In this day and age of checkpoint-laden shooters, disposable free to play games, and other flashy titles trying to stay afloat in the sea of the App Store it's pretty rare to have a game make you stop and think, or even let out an audible "Huh." Mr. Roboto Game Studios' upsets that balance with the just-released title Hope: The Other Side of Adventure [Free], a totally free adventure game of sorts where you "play" in bite-sized chunks and explore the story of what the stereotypical video game princess is feeling as she awaits rescue. It's super clever, as in most princess-rescuing video games the princess basically serves as a necessary MacGuffin to give a game a purpose beyond "Hey buddy, just complete these levels." I mean, we've seen this going back to the earliest games, and even persisting through modern-day titles. I'm not sure what the princess is even up to as you're collecting coins in Mario or Triforce fragments in Zelda is something many people even think about, as to the game, it's largely irrelevant.

Hope: The Other Side of Adventure is unlike any game you've played before, so much so that the developers even felt it necessary to include the following warning at the start of the game:

As mentioned above, you play as the princess and your control options are limited to moving around your cell, sighing, and crying. That's it. Each play session is five minutes long, and the tale is told over the course of six days. So far I've experienced the first "chapter" of the game, and really dig the setup. You hit the first stopping point quickly, at which point the game just tells you to come back tomorrow.

If you're into these kind of experimental games on any level this is something that should be on your iOS device. Give it a download, grab some headphones, turn down the lights, and take it in. Discovering this kind of thing is seriously my favorite thing about the App Store. If you want to know more about the game, the developer has posted an extensive blog entry [Translated] on the Mr. Roboto site, but I strongly recommend at least giving the first play session a shot before checking it out to avoid lessening any of the game's impact.

We'll post a deeper look at game next week once we've made it through the whole process as the developer intended. I can't wait.

  • A182

    "[Y]our control options are limited to moving around your cell, sighing, and crying. That's it."
    You really sold me on that!

    • Rivoc267

      Well it's the introduction to a girl locked in a cell. What can you expect from that?!?! That's like bitching about Zelda 1 saying the buttons don't do anything cause u don't start with a sword. The shame is that we have to check it again in 24 hours to see if the controls are still limited, that you can't keep playing to see what develops. That's the real crime.

  • toxiccheese

    I'm kind of intrigued with what this is trying to do. I like the idea of something outside the box. Not everything has to be a typical gaming experience.

  • DranDran

    Not available in my country :(

  • Mithel

    The voice acting is terrible.

    • Eoghann

      I've heard worse voice acting in some big budget movies.

      • Rivoc267

        I don't think the voice acting was bad, really. TONS of good budget anime and games have much worse voice acting. The failure was limiting your playtime PER DAY

  • Rivoc267

    I love the idea, although controls are very limited thus far. One major flaw, "come back tomorrow to see more". Dude.... Do you really want to limit how much someone can play your game in a sitting?!?! What if the user loves it?! What if they want more?!?! What if they only have an hour a week to play and u just crushed their hopes?! If I payed money for this I'd be furious. But it's free so ill stock it out.

    Developer tip #1: DON'T LIMIT HOW MUCH USERS CAN PLAY YOUR GAME IN A SITTING!!!

    5 minutes?!?! Really, you come up with a brilliant idea never before done, get people pumped and intrigued and tell them to come back tomorrow after 5 minutes?!?! REALLY, YOU THOUGHT THAT WAS A GOOD IDEA?!?! It's a cruel sick joke, and a shame. All that originality and you limit it so much. Frankly, I'm curious to know what will happen, but so furious I'm inclined to delete the app. But it was free so ill play before bed tomorrow I suppose.

    YOU FAILED just so you know. Poor execution on this brilliant idea. Very poor. Making people play 5 mins in 24 hr increments. I hope you fix that in an update. Such a basic rule you violated. People don't like to come back when you make them. People like to cone back to games as their option, not as they are forced.

    • HelperMonkey

      Because you seem somewhat upset, they will now allow you (but only you) to play for SIX minutes each day. But because such a long time would get boring, it will be split into three-minute segments every twelve hours. Pretty sweet, yeah? You can't complain about that!

    • decabao

      Probably it's part of the experience. Like, a princess can not just change the time on her cell. We have to wait as desperately as her (nearly)

  • Dueler

    Ok so i just finished day 1,2,3 & 4.
    You never get to do anything but sigh and cry. but the story's ok if you don't mind just walking around in the Cell while she monologues of her past night/day.
    The story actually does have me interested and the the game gives you little updates on the knight at the start of each day and an old school level clear screen where you see how many monsters he killed etc..
    Day 5 however doesn't load for me, the screen stays black and the story was just getting really tight. oh well ill just have to wait the actual five days now lol.
    Anyway Pro TIP, change your day forward on your iphone and you dont need to wait. just remember to set it back when your done or some stuff wont work anymore.

    • Marvin

      I took your advice and I encountered the same problem so its a possible bug

  • http://twitter.com/SquaredApe Robert Cummings

    Surprised there isn't options for different genders. Perhaps have the prince in his cell, except if it was the prince he'd have wifi internet and generally be incredibly happy every day.

    The End.

    ps. I'm not trolling, I think this game is a nice experiment :-)

  • Rivoc267

    Well, I'm enjoying finding out what's going to happen. I ranted pretty hard against the gameplay tactic of the developer, but what I FAILED TO UNDERSTAND is that you can only play snip- its on a limited timeframe, to add to the mood of the story, which I think is INCREDIBLY CLEVER. So clever, it went way over my head and just upset and frustrated me. NOW I get what the developer was getting at. In a way, getting mad about the login every day thing is similar to getting mad at an author for his setting and tone. Very, very unique game that deserves a shot. I'm enjoying my experience, and I retract my previous grumbles. Great idea here, guys. I'm curious what else you'll come up with or what other games will spinoff from this unique idea. :D

    • Dueler

      Good on ya, really couldn't understand your earlier opinion. I guess you sort of have to prepare yourself for the change. I mean so far isn't this the quintessential "Not-Game".
      But my opinion still stands that its great thus far and you can tell how well it's gripping us due to the fact we are coming back and posting about it.

  • reasonjp

    It's visually confused (it'd be better all in 2D with text than the low poly 3D and 8 bit interludes). The script is pretty weak and though I'm fine with interactive art over a gamey game, there is no interaction here at all; if you we're presented with six five minute audio monologues it'd have exactly the same effect as you never go beyond this tiny room. Wastes the medium a bit.

  • http://twitter.com/slammajamma28 Dillon Chalupsky

    Seems it has been pulled from the US App store

  • CommandoRick

    Definitely NOT currently on the U.S. App store... Aww shucks, I was actually pretty interested in this one.

    • Adams Immersive

      Yep--it's gone. Hopefully to return soon! I missed it.

  • Dueler

    so got the day 5 Notification and i'm getting black screen in game after starting on the menu, anyone else.

  • tpianca

    I'm also with a black screen on day 5. Actually, I missed one day, so I'm not sure if it would be really day 5.

  • Frungi

    So where's the "deeper look"?

  • Adams Immersive

    Looks like this is back in the App Store now.