Somber Pixel’s puzzle/adventure game Night Reverie was released in October 2021. The developers were kind enough to give us a key, and we have thoroughly enjoyed this sweet and hopeful story about the relationship between a brother and a sister.
Despite being a short experience, Night Reverie is a beautiful indie game for those who like adventures, puzzles, and visual novels.
Somber Pixel was founded in 2015 by two people. Now, this indie game developer has four members: an artist, a composer, and two programmers.
Night Reverie is their first game and a passion project. The developers talk about attempting to create a game that is meaningful and significant. They also aimed for a dream-like atmosphere, and they seem to have achieved just that.
Let’s take a look at what Night Reverie has to offer.
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Night Reverie is rather short (the players on Steam seem to have played it for two to four hours). Despite that, it manages to tell a cohesive story.
The game, in fact, is plot-driven, and we will try not to spoil anything. The story is very sweet, which makes sense since the main character is a child.
Matt and Emma are a brother and sister who love each other very much. However, their home is not as welcoming as it used to be. Their parents are rarely home, and Emma seems to have trouble getting out of bed.
To make it all even more confusing, Matt wakes up in a house he does not quite recognise. It is a warped version of his home, and Emma is nowhere to be seen…
But Matt is the Night Explorer! He will solve this mystery because that is what he is great at!
Night Reverie does not shy away from tough subjects, but it retains a hopeful, sweet tone to it. The story might make you cry, but you’ll be smiling through your tears!
Due to the importance of the plot to the game, it looks like a cross between a visual novel and a puzzle-adventure. But puzzles are important here too!
Indeed, Night Reverie is a puzzle-based adventure. You will explore many rooms and try to help the creatures that inhabit the house with Matt’s unbelievable puzzle-solving skills. You will meet characters that can help you and those that can confuse you. There will be a lot of mini-games, too, and the puzzles will be increasing in difficulty.
The game is controlled entirely through the keyboard. In fact, it looks very much like a classic RPG Maker game. Also, there are several endings, but only one ending is the true one. Don’t forget to save from time to time!
The game offers a charming little story that stands out on its own. However, Somber Pixel managed to create a beautiful package for it as well.
The pixel art is beautiful and sweet, and the locations are gorgeous! But it is the music that made the dreamlike and whimsical surroundings come to life.
The music changes as your adventure progresses, but it is always surreally beautiful. It does grow less innocent and more foreboding with time, but the true ending has it sound as hopeful as ever.
The story and the music work in tandem to cause you to laugh and cry. It is a very emotional experience.
Who Is the Game for?
Night Reverie is a game for those who like puzzles and story-driven games. You should also be prepared for a short experience and some mini-games, which get progressively more difficult. Finally, please be ready for some difficult topics.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Night Reverie uses the medium of a game to tell a story the way a book cannot. It is an engaged experience, in which the sound design contributes to the mood, and the gameplay says something about the main character.
All the encounters you have in Night Reverie are deeply symbolic. They are not out of place in what looks like a dream of a child, but if you look closer… they are more than that. And the visuals and music are representative of how close you are to resolving the mystery of the house.
The only issue is that Night Reverie is not very replayable. You might want to experience the story again, but the puzzles will not be very new by then.
You can use saves to see all the endings and experience the game to its fullest.
A cross between a visual novel and a puzzle-adventure, Night Reverie is a beautifully written and delivered story with unique design and soundtrack.
The game is explicitly crafted to make an emotional impact upon the player. It is amazing to watch how the story, gameplay, and design come together to create a one of a kind experience.
While not exactly replayable, this indie game is worth experiencing if you like puzzles, adventure, and visual novels.
Both cute and bittersweet, Night Reverie wants to tell you a story about the love between a brother and a sister. If that is interesting to you, Night Reverie is available on Steam: