Games where you can have serious negative emotions

I really enjoy games where you can play as an emotional wreck of a person. But being a heavy topic to tackle, it doesn’t seem super common. So I figured I’d ask here to see if people have any recommendations that I’ve missed. Complete games or WIP are fine.
Examples of games with the sort of thing I’m looking for:
I, the Forgotten One - PTSD
Fallen Hero - Suicidal ideation, self hatred
Mind Blind - Depression, guilt/self blame
Greenwarden - Suicidal ideation, anxiety
Smoke and Velvet - Depression, anxiety


One of the best in my opinion is The Exile:

I have to check out Greenwarden - never heard of it, and I like these themes too.


I don’t know if this would count for you or not; however, you can have some pretty grave hangups in The Grim and I that you may or may not work through. That’s actually the entire point of the plot. It’s not as dark, but you can definitely be a mess.

I related to the fear/anxiety portion a ton.


Through broken lenses is a good one tho it also contains the sexual abuse of a minor among other stuff (mc was a child soldier)

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Study in Steampunk deals with a lot of emotion… One of the reasons I enjoyed it so much.


Perhaps not exactly what you were looking for, but in The Fog Knows Your Name you can have some pretty heavy paranoia (it is a horror game after all) and you can also have some serious trauma over the death of your friend (that’s not a spoiler it’s the first thing you learn about in game).

Rent-A-Vice lets you play as very self destructive character. I’m not sure what negative emotion the MC’s feelings would be exactly, but it’s very prominent throughout the game.

Similar to The Fog Knows your name, Highlands, Deep Waters lets you play a character who can slip into insanity if you don’t let them indulge in their vices or get too caught up in the investigation. Big trigger warnings for this one though, as there is some sexual assualt in it. Not on screen exactly, but it’s definitely there.

From what I’ve heard, the later Samurai of Hyuga books also allow you to have serious negative emotions (and even force them on you sometimes from what I’ve heard). However, there are some huge trigger warnings for this series, which you can find listed under the description for Book 4. I also haven’t played this one myself, this is just what I’ve heard on the forums.

An Odyssey: Echoes of War is kind of a retelling of the Odyssey but it deals much more with the aftermath of the Trojan War and the trauma the characters experienced from it.

It’s fantastic, you definitely should.


I thought about suggesting that one, but I’m conflicted.

It depends if having the character be that way by default without being able to make them actually want to get better truly counts? :thinking:
It’s a bit hard to describe. I can’t argue with the fact the MC is an “emotional wreck of a person”, so if that’s all that’s needed then sure, it works perfectly fine! Honestly, even at the beginning they already are. But it gets WAAAY worse from the second half of book 3.
With that being said, as I mentionned, the players don’t really have the agency to make the MC want to get better or make them feel even worse, so if what one likes is exploring the worse possible mentality for the MC while having other options there, then it won’t do. I know that’s what I do in Mind Blind, in which it’s totally optional, and I get an entirely different feeling when playing that than when I play Samurai of Hyuga, in that regard. But maybe for some people there isn’t much distinction between choosing to have a MC like that and being forced to it, eh… :woman_shrugging:

With that being said, Samurai of Hyuga CAN be considered to be pretty triggering, yeah. High levels of violence, depression and self hatred, sexual assault (that one can be skipped), dismemberment and all sorts of violence and questionnable things.

Now, it IS one of my favorite IF type games of all times, and really, a great game overall.

I will! I’ve read the synopsis and RO descriptions, and I already know I’ll love it!

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Somme Trench, while these emotions are never explicitely stated, it’s a game set in WW1 Somme Trenches hence the name. in your first battle you see a large portion of your batallion cut down and after that you begin to see an undead soldier nobody else sees or hears. I think that its a mental trick from PTSD and that when you take up the offer to take the soldier’s hand and put the fight behind you. I believe thats the ptsd and depression offering the soldier an out. Suicide


I hadn’t really thought about the distinction before, but on reflection I feel having that agency is what makes things land for me. Using Mind Blind as an example again, something like choosing not to defend yourself during the interrogation hits so much harder for being able to see responses an MC in a healthier headspace could have made.

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That’s why I didn’t mention Samurai of Hyuga at first!
The Exile is a middle ground, so I did mention it - the MC is canonically depressed etc, but you can still try to make things better or worse with your choices.

I like that kind of themes no matter if there is player agency in them being present or not, but it hits a special chord when you actually get to decide.


Forgotten. It has… a lot of negative emotions and mental health issues, from anxiety to self-harm. But the latest update was quite long ago.


The recently released Donor is a mix of supernatural horror and dark comedy that the MC is imprisoned by two vampires who really don’t care whether you live or not. it deals with helplessness, drug addiction, Stockholm syndrome, toxic relationship and betrayal. There are so much fear and anxiety that they form the basis of mini games.

Blood For Poppies is in beta now. The MC Is en experiment trapped for all their life. The best outcome is only a bittersweet/false hope after all


If I understood this topic correctly, then I recommend the WIP Throne of Ashes. It deals with a lot of things, including the option where MC can be touch-aversed and/or sexually abused. A lot of angst to be had as well.


Thanks for suggesting that one - I tend to avoid Twine, so I’m less aware of games made using it, and it seems REALLY interesting!

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Not a problem! :slight_smile: I myself am not that familiar with Twine games (save for A Tale of Crowns, another good one), so stumbling onto that particular WIP was a nice surprise.


This game is really good.With the addition of calm,blissful music,it was simply sublime.Thank you so much for this suggestion :blush:


I’m writing one like this myself, please remind me to add it here when it’s ready :sweat_smile: with topics like death, anxiety, and cognitive problems and memory loss.

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