Complete version of two-player, reality-shifting co-op puzzle-platformer available now through Early Access
How do we succeed in overcoming life’s obstacles as social beings when it’s clear that we often see things very differently than those around us? This is an important question for everyone to consider, but it takes on a much more literal meaning in tokoronyori’s newly released co-op puzzle-platformer BOKURA.
The game stars two young boys who dream of seeing “far away” and run away from home together. When they come across a disturbing sight, however, they faint and awaken to find themselves “in two different realities occupying the same space.” One of the boys now perceives “a picturesque forest laden with animals while the other inhabits an industrial dystopia full of robots.” If they’re to figure out what caused this rift in their respective realities and hopefully find a way to reunite in the world they left behind, they’ll need to cooperate in a “mind-bending escapade,” solving puzzles and making a number of crucial choices that will greatly impact their journey.
Presented in a charmingly chunky side-scrolling pixel art style, BOKURA requires two people to play, either in couch mode or via some sort of external chat program. Most co-op games drop players in different locations, but here both characters share the same screen. The catch is, what each player sees is “completely different” from their counterpart, and objects in the environment behave differently as well. What one player does in one reality impacts the other, so to succeed both partners will need to communicate what they see to compare differences and cooperate to solve complex puzzles and progress together. There is no single “right” solution to the obstacles in your path, as the game is meant to be highly replayable with multiple paths and possible endings.
The first game to be published as part of the Kodansha Game Creator’s Lab project, BOKURA is now available on Steam for Windows and Mac, with each purchase coming with a free Friend Pass. While technically still just in Early Access for the next six months, the game is complete and fully playable. The only feature not included is cross-platform functionality, which will be implemented when the iOS, Android and Nintendo Switch versions are complete.