Knock Knock

Knock Knock, the sound came not from the door, but inside the cabin.

Knock Knock, how do I put your experience into words? You have the appearance of a game, but challenge conventional expectations. I feel confused and frustrated when I spend time with you. We tread the same ground over and over again, and you never tell me what you want from me. But that’s your intent, isn’t it? ISN’T IT! Like the way you randomly generate your levels, so I can never be prepared for what’s to come. Or the obscure directions I do get from you, which sometimes are in direct contradiction to what I should be doing. You twist time and reality around me. You send uncanny nightmares to stalk me. All I want to is make it to see another sunrise.

I remember when we were introduced. I was enamored with your surreal style of cartoonish graphics, and your lighting. Oh, Knock Knock, your lighting. Shadows took on a life of their own, and colors underwent a metamorphosis in your lighting. I remember the boy; the unkempt red hair, the baleful stare, holding nothing but a candle. He spoke to me in a garbled tongue, never breaking that stare. I never understood a word he said, but you put the words on the screen for me. I thought you were helping me. The nameless boy needed guided from room to room. He has insomnia, and is fixing the lights in every room. I guide him to illuminate to room as he wants, and he tells me to wait and closes his eyes. The room was spartan and unwelcoming when the light first went on. I honored the boy’s request and waited. Furnishings faded in from nothing, now the room is cluttered and unwelcoming. He remarks how he can hide behind these things in the room. The boy can feel their presence. I began to feel them too.

Knock Knock

A slam and a sizzle causes the camera to pan to another room of the house. The first guest is here, and it’s coming for the boy.

I guide the boy to turn the lights on in the rooms we had already visited, hoping it would keep whatever the guest was at bay. The boy told me to turn them off, that things would be able to see him from the outside, and know he was home. This was his world; I had to assume he knew best. It was then I first heard the guest, it’s croaking metallic voice speaking a language I did understand. Speaking discord it sauntered slowly toward the boy. I guided the boy to go the other way, back up one room and take the stairs down. We were cut off from going any further; we had to find another way. I hadn’t guided the boy to the basement room yet. I was looking for another route, or a place to hide the boy. You had other plans for us, Knock Knock.

The wall peeled back into the void, and an unblinking eye stared at us from beyond. The guest was descending the stairs after us. With no where else to turn, I guided the boy to enter the void. Fade to black. The boy was now in a long hall with an open door at the end. I guided to him through the door, and right back to where I first met the boy. He stood by his bed and stared at me. Time had rewound as well. The dawn was further than before. I felt his eyes meeting mine, and where I once saw his stare go through me, I now felt accusation. my actions were going to force him to relive this all over again.

Knock Knock

I foolishly accepted the blame back then. It must have been me. It was through my actions we had fallen back to start. I vowed to see the boy out of this madness, and guided him more cautiously this time. Now hearing a second voice in the darkness. It was feminine, and softer. Was it the house? Was it you Knock Knock? I cannot say. It would say things, true things, but for what purpose. Was this voice trying to help? Or was it just prolonging the madness? I managed to guide the boy to the front door, now open. He told me there was no where else to go, and that the path outside only lead back to the house. That couldn’t be true, Knock Knock must be responsible for this misguided madness the boy was experiencing. I should have listened.

The path in the woods wound round the same trees. Left, right, up, or down, it was all the same. It all lead back to the house. Having no where else to go, I guided to boy back inside. This is when I truly saw your loading screen, Knock Knock. A silhouette of the boy moved one notch further towards the center of a concentric spiral. Towards the inevitable end.

Knock Knock

I still am guiding the boy through the house, and the guests stalking him there. Strange creatures composed of body parts and household objects, shambling ever towards the boy in a depraved game of hide and seek. I help him survive his own insanity to see another daybreak, only to be cast out into the forest and back into the house again. We’re getting close to the center of the spiral now, the origin point. Will you provide answers there Knock Knock? Or will I be left with more questions?

I now think that was your game all along. This isn’t about the end goal for you, it’s about drawing the players in.

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