Manchester based studio White Paper Games is still mid-way through development of their debut game, Ether One, but it's already piqued the interest of many. Ether One is a sci-fi adventure that has the player delving into the minds of those around them (not totally unlike what we've heard about We The Force Studios' game Randall). White Paper's game explores the themes of mental illness and memory, paying homage to classic films such as Inception and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
The core concept behind Ether One is that players are sent into the minds of people suffering from various mental illnesses. The player is a 'restorer' and one of a small number of people who are able to do this. Players are instructed to investigate the host's memories for the purposes of hopefully restoring the host's mental state to something a bit more neuro-typical.
The early portion of the game sets players down in a sterile lab environment. After completing a few procedures you're put into a mental representation of a seaside town with a mining facility that is entirely constructed from the memories of a patient. The game is played in the first person with traditional WASD controls and looks extremely atmospheric.
The gameplay video above features the sound of distant voices from people back in the real world and shifting environments slightly reminiscent of those found in some of the Silent Hill games. Ether One is also said to feature some devilishly difficult puzzles that will require you to whip out your dry-erase board or notepad and pen in order to keep track of clues and other snippets of information you'll come across whilst exploring memories.
In addition to all of this, Ether One will support the use of the Oculus Rift. The devs have apparently only just begun to implement support for the Rift but From what I've heard and seen of this game, it seems like the perfect title for it.
The game has emerged victorious from Steam Greenlight and will be available sometime later this year. And I can't wait to play it. Remember to check out the official site here and to check out the gameplay trailer above as well.