Your dog is missing. Your sister is missing cause of your dog being missing. It is time for you, a little girl, to brave the dark streets of your rural town in Japan and find your dog and sister. Oh, and there are ghosts. This is Yomawari: Night Alone.
The story of Yomawari: Night Alone is a young girl is walking her dog, Poro, at night and suddenly Poro dashes away from her. Left with just his leash and no idea where he went, the young girl goes home. Upon arriving, her older sister is surprised to see just the young girl and no dog. She decides to go looking for said dog. The young girl is worried about her sister and her dog and decides to look for them both. Now she is on a mission to find them but only at night. With ghosts wandering the streets. Equipped with just a flashlight. And rocks. Much rocks.
The gameplay of Yomawari is like a puzzle game. In order to finish the chapter, the player needs to go from point A to point B to trigger a cutscene to set off the next flag in the chapter. Basically find the object that you will need to finish the chapter, whether it be getting a key to open a door or placing salt to ward off murderous ghosts. You are equipped with a flashlight that you can turn off and on. There are puzzles that require you to have your flashlight off since some ghosts do not like a flashlight in the eyeballs. You will also have rocks, coins, matches/torches, and salt. Rocks are used to distract ghosts (it does not work for all ghosts). Toss a rock and they will go to that sound. Coins are used to quicksave at various Jizo Statues around the place. Yes, I said quicksave. The hard saves are at the end of each chapter and in your bedroom. Matches/torches are used to distracts ghost too, especially ones that will kill you if you shine the light in their eyes. I am not sure how salt is used since I never tried it.
Ghosts are everywhere you look. So be prepared to die to them many times. Each ghost is different about how they move and what sets them off so be careful and learn their traits. A few chapters will have a “boss” ghost. That ghost will appear numerous times throughout the chapter and some times you can’t shake them, but you can hide from them via bushes and giant signs. While hiding, you will see a red ball glow and pulse. This will show you how close the ghost is to you. When the red ball moves away from you and the pulse weakens, this means you run like hell and pray the ghost won’t find you. Again.
You can run and tippytoe your way through the game. I haven’t tippytoed much but it has been useful when I need to be quiet around ghosts. Running is cool but you have a stamina bar. Remember you are a little girl, not an adult with crazy stamina. When you are running near a ghost, your stamina bar will be used up more quickly due to being scared. Dude, it’s a ghost. You would be scared too.
Do you like collectables? Good! There are a crap ton of collectables scattered all over the map. The only way to see them is by shining your flashlight on them. They appear as a shiny dot on the ground. Be careful though, the rocks/coins/matches also appear as shiny dots. Some collectables can be put together to build something else like a radio or a puzzle. With those collectables, there are many pieces to collect in order to get the finished object.
Yomawari: Night Alone is short horror game that has its share of jumpscares and moments of dread. If you are looking for a short horror game to satisfy you for Halloween, then I can recommend Yomawari. Oh… You can feed cats. CATS!!!! They love this town. Ghosts don’t bother them so they cool.
Yomawari: Night Alone
Game could be a little longer but there are those collectables… Gotta find them all!
I also have to quit dying to ghosts…
Yomawari: Night Alone is available on Playstation Vita and Steam on October 25th.
I would like to thank NIS America for providing us with a copy of the game for reviewing purposes.