BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Critics and gamers alike praise “That Dragon, Cancer”, a game based on a real story. The story of Joel, a five-year-old child that ultimately dies from a rare cancer form. The game was written and created by Joel’s parents and it embodies their five-year struggle with the illness.
“That Dragon, Cancer”, a game based on a real story has been nominated for a Best Narrative award at the Indie Video Games Awards. This comes only shortly after its release on Steam. The story of the game follows the two parents from the moment in which Joel is born, to the long, frequent walks in the hospital lobbies, to the sometimes encouraging, sometimes depressing talks that they have with the doctors that tried to treat the baby, to the ultimate, inevitable moment of Joel’s death.
Apart from being the incredibly sad story of a life-changing struggle, the game also acted as a coping mechanism for the two grieving parents. They hope that their creation will help others understand what is really like to battle cancer, and also be there for parents that are going through the same ordeal that they went through.
“That Dragon, Cancer” is an indie game with a dialogue-based gameplay. It is similar, in appearance, to “The Cat Lady” and “Hellblade”. The settings are roughly sketched, the faces of the characters are vague, but the colors used are very warm. The game manages to induce to the person that is playing it the same, or much rather similar, emotions that the characters experience throughout the gameplay.
Even though speedrunning is all a craze these days, this is not a game that can be finished in one single sitting. Not even by the most serious of gamers. This is due to the fact that all of the fine details like the characters’ voices, or the lighting, or the sounds made by the toys with which Joel plays seem to take the player and emerge him right there into the story.
There are no reset buttons, no alternate happy endings. The people that chose to play “That Dragon, Cancer”, a game based on a real story will get to live the real experiences of the Greens, Joel’s parents. And they have decided that the game should be true to what happened in real life. So be prepared to hop on the feels train, because this game will leave you sobbing.
“That Dragon, Cancer” is available for download on Steam starting this 12th of January.
You can also check out the trailer below.
Image source: www.kotaku.com