Heartbreak can be hell, and in Philophobia: The Fear of Love, that’s more than a mere metaphor, Stuart – its protagonist – traversing the actual bowels of Hell in an attempt to mend that which was broken. Whether it will actually work remains to be seen, but if nothing else, it’s an undeniably unique way to work through the five stages of grief.
If only it was that easy in real life, eh? A quick trip through Hell, beat some hundred levels, a handful of demonic bosses and come out on the other side of this challenging platformer, heart healed! Okay so ‘easy’ might not the most accurate way to describe the experience that awaits players in Philophobia: The Fear of Love, for Stuart, it’s a way of coping. A way of dealing with “his horrifying encounter with heartbreak”. Probably the only way too, seeing how video game protagonists don’t really have a lot of say in what happens next, restricted to their game world.
Right. So, it starts with denial… and ends with acceptance. Reaching that point, however, is another matter entirely, and one which involves enduring dozens upon dozens (read: 100+) of “levels of torture”, helping other lost souls as you go along, kicking demonic you-know-what. All while trying your best not to give up after dying for the umpteenth time. Because if the eerie trailer below is any indication, that will happen, time and time again. Well worth the effort though, as beating the odds will grant you (as in Stuart, not the player) salvation. Or will it?