i love this so much. i found it at exactly the right time. thank you so much for making this!
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Thrilled to get this message. Thanks for that. Fair play on making your games too. We got this!
Strength has officially been gived.
Hey there! Played your game at just the right time. It really helped me remember my value and the reason why I do what I do. This game needs to be played by everyone, or during a time of need. This game is an absolute gem and I can't believe more people haven't played it. I really enjoyed your game :) thank you for making it!
I really like the idea of this game, with all this thoughts and stuff, but actually I had so much fun in the dancing part :D
It made me really happy and I didn't expect that, I played it much longer than ten minutes, thanks for that!
This game stole 3 hours and 44 minutes of my night, caused me to download numerous programs and probably a good few viruses onto my computer, and will have single-handedly ruined my sleep schedule. In other words, this game was fantastic. All this despite - or perhaps because of - the immense pain and suffering it has brought upon me.
I am not writing of the game's content itself, that has been done already and I assure you it was fantastic. No, I seek to tell the story of my arduous journey in searching for a way to play the original speaking audio of the... characters(?) in the game.
Admittingly, I may be my own to blame for this games trespass. I won't lie, I thought it would be easy to find and play the audio. I started off and went into the game data, finding a folder of streaming assets. Easy right? This story complete? NO! NOT EVEN CLOSE! NOT BY A MILLION MILES CLOSE IN ANY CONCEIVABLE WAY! Why not, you might ask? Well because of the painful, and I do mean painful fact that the audio files were of the .BANK type.
You see, the way in which one goes about converting this file type is so brain dead, so cruel to anyone who might try, I honestly question the mental state of whoever designed such a heinous file format. Hours spent reading guides from online websites, downloading programs which were supposed to convert BANK. files and didn't, frustration incarnate is a meek and meager description of what I could call my supposed feeling at that point. Quite frankly, there was no feeling. Only a sunken suffering of the soul as I plunged deeper and deeper into the rabbit hole of YouTube videos with less than five views and hyperlinks with less than superb standards. Download buttons placed in the abandoned wreckages of decade old websites, whose remains I robbed in search of a conversion tool.
Over and over I went through the excruciating process of trying programs, which either didn't work due to my computers age (it uses windows 7, so sue me) or which were so broken they wouldn't have functioned under any right circumstance. A repetition of program deletion, guide finding, video watching, hyperlink clicking, program downloading, program failing, and program deletion.
Finally, after multiple hours, I stumbled upon a blessing of a video, with a functioning download and a working program to convert .BANK files. They were then converted to .WAV files, which forced me to download VLC Media Player. I would attend to frustration further, but compared to what I had already faced it was very little to ask at that point. I finally had access to the voice lines of the games characters. The oh-so inspirational dialogue that I sold my life to.
Game developer, James Poole, you have created something which has changed this day in my life completely and totally. It means something, to have had purpose in a task, even one so frustrating. Well, after all is said and done anyways. It has been been done, and now it is said. Thank you James, and whoever else needs thanking of course.
Also, forgive what are surely ramblings of stupidity in this comment, I am tired. So, so tired.
This was a journey to read! Super humbled to hear that you enjoyed it. I feel a bit exposed that you can get at the audio files but nice one for hacking at it! There are probably a whole lot of outtakes in there and I am kicking myself that I didnt add some easter eggs in the files to find. Cheers for playing! :)
Managed to pick up the game on sale, made some kind of bonus
This is an interesting work of yours, James.
Anyways, I wish to give my regards to you in Ireland, and give my thoughts on this.
Of course, as you realized, we all have a sort of river of thoughts when it comes to our lives, whether it'd be an expectation, an idea, faith and belief of something, a sense of willingness, a question...
You've had these thoughts and many others, and this work of yours should be shared to make light of the complexity in our inside conflict.
I think I might be too into this, but, after all these random words, I like this, this sharing of what you had in mind when you were planning on making something.
You did made something, and it was more than enough to get people to think of themselves.
I guess this is what you wanted to convey to others?
Basically, it's a nice experience, that's what I wanted to say.
Howdy! I just played this after seeing it's nomination for AMAZE (congrats by the by!) I wasn't sure if this was the best way to reach out to you but I was struck by your design sensibilities as I feel we have some in common. The recognition of the affect striking visual design and voice can have. Switching up the vignettes to keep the experience novel. Also, the playful silly dance moment at the end. Hope this isn't tactless but I'd like to share my own work, I think you might find it interesting. https://duncan74.itch.io/life-at-1247pm
I hope this does not come across as cynical self promotion, I just thought you might feel similar. In any case, great game!
by "playing" this interactive thought, i'm reminded of the thousands of strange, some inaccessible thoughts i have about every single part of the creative process. i'm reminded of the fact that 90% of what i create is going to be shit and that i should accept that and continue creating regardless of that fact. and, finally, i am also reminded of the beginner's guide by davey wreden which is the highest compliment i could give to an interactive experience.
What a wonderful game!
I don't often write reviews, but I thought I'd give it a go here.
Over lockdown, I imagine thousands of socially starved creatives came up with some crazy ideas for games (or 'interactive thoughts' in this case) , and one in which you walk around interacting with hundreds of thoughts and feelings most certainly seems like it wouldn't have been made otherwise. Some are completely mundane, others are more thought -provoking, and some made me LOL ('THROW THOSE SHAPES'). But they all form the seemingly endless network of thoughts that make up 'Give Me Strength', allowing the flow of James' thoughts to be relatable to all in some way, particularly people like me who like art and want to make it good, but have no idea how or why.
In terms of technical side of the game, there are one or two minor things that pulled me out of the experience. Firstly, I accidentally skipped the tutorial and opening monologue by going to the blue guy straight away, which was fixed by a second playthrough. A more not-me problem is how, in the first level, there are invisible boundaries that make quite a few of the 'red guys' inaccessible; something very frustrating for 100% perfectionists like me in such narrative experiences. However, I'm not sure whether this an over-sight or a deliberate stylistic choice, since we can't access all our thoughts at the same time (would love to hear James' thoughts on this!).
The soundtrack is a great background to the experience, being soft and flowing enough to not interrupt your own thoughts and the flow of the experience, but never in a dull moment when you do pull away to listen to it: like good elevator music, but better and mirroring the echoed style of some character models. The animation style has a similar flow, with excellent and yet so tragically under-used dance moves, which definitely took far more development time than most other things in the game.
I don't believe that such an open ended game is designed to tell a cohesive story. Instead, it allows the player to think as deeply and take as many lessons from it as they can interpret. I, for one, was reminded that good work comes from throwing lots of bad work out there and seeing what people like. While 'Give Me Strength' can allow you to have a good think about the nature of your own wandering thoughts, I believe it is a little too abstract, and requires too much internal analysis, to gain mass appeal. But I'm also fairly sure that making the next indie darling wasn't James' intention, but just to put another game out there and see if anybody could make meaningful connections to it. In that regard, I think it's class.
Thanks a lot for this! I appreciate you taking the time to share your experiences with the game, it means a lot.
Regarding the inaccessible red guys, Im sorry to cause frustration haha! Something that I was trying to get across in these levels is the lack of control that we often have over the thoughts that pass us by. And often I am trying my best to remember something but for the life of me I can't get that thought back. So yes, while this boundary is firstly a technical limitation (I needed to draw a line somewhere!), I thought this placement fitted what I was trying to get at.