A Place for the Unwilling is a branching narrative adventure set in the final 21 days of a dying Dickensian city. Explore, meet its residents, and make decisions that reveal terrible secrets and shapes the fate of the city. But remember – the clock never stops, and you can’t be everywhere at once.

Spanish developer AlPixel has released a six-minute gameplay video, showing how three different characters choose to spend their first day in the game. Each one goes down a unique path that will set them on their own path down the game’s branching narrative.

Elizabeth chooses to focus on trade and commerce, Arthur attends a party and performs a favor or a friend-of-a-friend, and Margaret sets out to explore as much as she can. While we can’t see it in the video itself, the developers promise that these unique interactions will have a lasting effect on the remaining 20 days, and can even change the final outcome.

Another thing we don’t really see in this gameplay video is the game’s Lovecraftian inspiration. Towards the end of the video, the narrator tells us we can choose to spend our 21 days as a regular citizen, working, socializing, and just going on their day. Or, we can try and uncover the city’s mysteries and “what lurks below.” Things lurking below are a cornerstone of every Lovecraftian tale, so that’s promising. The game will also deal with themes of inequality, isolation, and more; sounds like a cheery game.

A Place for the Unwilling is all about the story. There’s no combat, no mini-map, and no quest markers – you are free to go at your own pace and find your own path. There are over 100 narrative events you can encounter, depending on the time, place, and your previous decisions.

A Place for the Unwilling

I heard of A Place for the Unwilling in 2016, when it was on successfully funded on Kickstarter. But this gameplay video is the first I’ve seen of the game since, and I have to say I’m intrigued. I enjoy slow-burning cosmic horror tales, and with the game’s focus on replayability and player freedom, I’m sure I’ll be spending a lot of time in this decaying Dickensian city.

A Place for the Unwilling will be available later this year on PC. Head over to the game’s Steam page for more information and updates. Don’t forget to wishlist it if you like what you see.

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