The rules of Nevermind are simple: find the exit, and don't be afraid. I don't mean that in a comforting way either, because you'll face some pretty creepy, weird, and terrifying things. You shouldn't be afraid because the game knows when you are, and the more frightened you become, the harder it gets. Do you feel better now?
Making an appearance at GDC 2015 following a successful Kickstarter campaign, Nevermind is an adventure-horror game that challenges you to keep calm in stressful situations, or else. Described as a "bio-feedback enhanced adventure-horror game," by Flying Mollusk Creative Director Erin Reynolds, the game tracks your heart rate via a real-sense camera (like the Kinect) or heart monitor to see how scared you are. The faster your heart is pumping, the more frightened it thinks you are, the more difficult Nevermind becomes.
"You have to learn how to progress through this horrific level that has… all sorts of intense moments and keep your cool," Reynolds explained during an on-site demo. "It's a fun kind of horror game, a twist to horror games, but on the other hand, it's a tool for learning how to stay cool and calm in stressful situations."
And stressful they are, since the story of Nevermind revolves around exploring the repressed memories of PTSD patients trying to recover from past trauma. The game's dreamscape setting is rife with bizarre and uncomfortable imagery, like screaming baby heads and milk cartons full of blood. But don't let it get to you! Or else the screen fills with static and everything becomes more hostile. "It's a very unique feeling, because the game is responding to something you have not a lot of conscious control over," Reynolds explained, noting that playtesters have so far been intrigued by the challenge of mastering their fear.
Nevermind is currently set to hit Xbox One by the end of 2015, and could arrive on Steam before then if it clears Greenlight. Also, you're thinking this sounds like a perfect and/or inhumanly cruel fit for virtual reality, you're not alone. "We're super excited to bring it to VR," Reynolds said. "It's all about being in the space, in the world, and VR… opens up a bunch of new options for that."