Windows Near life expérience

Near Life Expérience can be played here:

Near Life Experience is a game I made for the 9th GMC jam (from the old forums) and I managed to score 4th place with it and win a steam key for Hotline Miami! (great game btw). The theme was "science gone wrong", and the limitation was "no humans nor humanoïds". Everything until "the trial" was made in about 72 hours, and then the trial itself was done during the following week.

What is this about?

This game is a visual novel, and will consist mostly in reading. During the course of the game, you will encounter a mystery that you must solve, and you must gather evidence across the game before moving on. Occasionally, there will also be a few mini-games that you must complete in order to proceed.


  • Press any key or click to advance the text
  • Hold the N key to skip text if you've already read it.
  • Use WASD or the arrow keys to move around when necessary
  • Spacebar is used for quick time events and actions.
Oh and you will probably cry at some point.
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Near life expérience
@Adrien Dittrick
Review written by: @Otyugra
___I believe game developers need to play other indie games, the same way writes should read books to improve their skill. To tell the truth, I can hardly recall the last time I played, much less bought, a large indie game, so I'm glad to have played this. Near Life X. calls back to me from a era of indie games left behind. It was made in 2013, but it feels older than that. It has midi music, DIY graphics, a story that feels innocent in a way that's hard to describe, and gameplay that feels radically simple when it's present. It's quite dreadful to witness this brand of indie game die over the years. I can't speak for others, but I've lately become afraid of how others will see my vision as a creator so I work on a game until it's perfect. In contrast, this is a game that feels like it was mad pure to a vision, the creator as the audience, and funny enough, that has always worked in a quirky way.
___One thing I wasn't expecting was for this to be a digital gamebook, but not only that, it's got innovation and minor elements of a regular videogame intigrated. It is amazing what you can do with GameMaker if you just think and try to do something different. I once made a randomly generated animation, and this guy made a digital gamebook. Hey why not! The creator didn't hold back. The story is unlike anything I've experienced in a really long time, and that's not making a comment about the quality of the story. It starts off with a beautiful display of what stories look like if written word was displayed on a still 2d plain over a sequence of time. Not only did the intro story entertain me really well, it took full advantage of its interactive format. The player still reads at the player's individual pace, but words appear in different locations and assisted you as you read. The location of the words was able to do things a traditional book can't and that's something I hope more people learn. The intro story itself was simple and classic enough, backed by good execution, and contributed to a perfect intro to the gamebook. I can't say enough how wonderful the intro novel by Mystery is. Unfortunately the gamebook goes downhill from here.
___By 2013 standards, this is an ugly gamebook. The graphics are minimal, blurry, sloppily designed, and at on point contain an error (the moving animation for Mystery has a different eye color). While character design gave me mixed feelings, everything else about the visual art of the game detracted from the story (obviously, I'd take fairly-bad graphic over no graphics whatsoever. What art is present is important due to the specific designs and world presented. This wouldn't work as a modern text adventure game). This is all foreshadowed by the poorly-made title screen; The title is way too low and everything looked stretched too large as though full screen was an afterthought. The backgrounds helped set up the bizarre atmosphere, but were really distracting. As for the characters, who you look at throughout the entire game, they had next to no animation, were crudely drawn, really lacked consistency (sometimes that was mostly a good thing), and on rare occasions, I didn't know what I was even looking at, like with Mystery's arm/wing/things. If art quality is very important to you, the reader, I cannot recommend this game in it's current state at all.
___The world you are presented with, and it's story are the main elements of the entire game. So did they hold up? Definitely. For such a small place, God's eternal domain has a past and present. It feels realized and complex. Adrien has a lot of guts to write a story about an alternate monotheist creation myth. Most games don't touch religion with a 10 foot pole, so to see one take on the subject so well and so unbiased is a breath of fresh air. It didn't even feel the slightest bit pretentious despite how hardcore it takes itself seriously. The story is more thought provoking than meets the eye and manages to have mostly complex characters with unifying traits that play off of each other. Love stood out to me as the flattest character which was nice for variety, but there is only so much flatness I'm willing to take in a story the raises the bar like this one did. The cast of characters was a highlight, and I loved to see the story go places and their reaction to one another. The story, when trying to be a story, was solid, the driving force for why you might buy this online gamebook. Story occurs during gameplay too, which is a concept most people seem to struggle with. If you have a segment where you need to throw the main character at another character, as a third character, over and over until the second character stops evading you, amidst a larger narrative of trying to talk with a wrongfully convicted prisoner, it will ruin the story. The "hey hey kids! It's time for a wacky gameplay segment!" felt really unfitting, yet needed, but I'll talk about that in a moment. Overall, the story was great, though it didn't feel like it fully earned the right to be so deeply dramatic considering the many silly/ relaxed elements within the same story. Kudos for having a murder mystery story in heaven; that's basically what the story is, for anyone who hasn't played the game.
___The sound effects that play, such as the one during the constant display of new text, did their job well. The one exception was the "shing" sound that managed to be at least twice as loud as everything else. The music is all taken from other games. They sound nice and are swamped out often. The problem with borrowed music is how often it fails to fit the dialogue or scene as a whole, but it would take a lot of music to fix that, in your defense. The thing is, your selling this game. That is absolutely deplorable, to take someone else's copyright music and sell it as part of your game. You can sell games when you own the property to all of the parts; any other situation is illegal and immoral, specially considering you didn't give credit to the composers in the credits.
___*ahem* Anyway...
___The actual gameplay almost couldn't be simpler and random, but I have to admit, Adrien did a good job of keeping it active and challenging at about the right difficulty. The challenge was sometimes unfair (like with the throwing chase scene and contrived-path through the ocean) but were noticeably much more easy at other times, like the three times you needed to cross a path. Speaking of which, I find it really odd that you had "get from point a to point b" gameplay three times in total out of maybe seven total gameplay segments. It got tiresome the second time, and stayed that way the third. The present-the-evidence scene was extremely frustrating, which doesn't help the fact that this was the game's climax. If the climax requires you to present evidence that you'll likely pick wrong because of bad execution, you'll dislike the climax, and if you dislike the climax, a major dent forms in the player's overall opinion of the story. Then there was the worst of it, the quick time event at the end; that event happened so fast that I failed to understand what I needed to do in time and it cause me to go all the way back to before the climax of the game. I literally quit playing the game right there and then. There was no way I was going to redo that nonsense trail-gameplay so that I could do an unfair QTE so that I could see/ read the remaining 1 minute of content. In fact, the game should have ended right there, before you find out the second thing dies. This just seemed like a new story arch, which was bad timing because it made the game feel like it was dragging on too long.
___It all comes together to make for a good story, but a slightly lesser general experience. The elements not found in a book (moving visuals, sound, and interaction) all enhanced the story and fit for what it was, but the execution muddied the end product. It was an experience that I don't regret at all, and one with some very strong highlights. If the music was not taken illegally, I would have no problem paying $4 for this game. However, because the suggest price is $5 (higher than my suggest price), because it is extremely short and flawed considering the asking price, and because the maker of this videogame does not own the rights to the music (and maybe sound effects), I cannot recommend this game, at it's full asking price, to anyone. I can, however, recommend getting this game for free, to anyone who likes a good story, and doesn't mind bad art/ gameplay in a gamebook.

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The opinions and points of view offered in this review are not the opinions and points of view of the GMC Rad Reviewers, but from the author of the review. We are all humans; as such, we might have made a mistake or misinterpreted something when playing your game, so please share your thoughts of this review with us.
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Oh hey there thanks for the review :)
About the whole "sales" thing, I don't actually sell this game, gamejolt just has a suggested donation button. Most people will decide not to pay anything for it and they'd be right!
You have a valid point about the suggested price though, maybe I'll just remove that!