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Video Game / Lone Siren

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"Open your eyes, dear, for you are alone."

Lone Siren is a free exploration game released in October 2013 by molegato.

Its premise is simple: The titular Siren wakes up and discovers all of her kind has left, for reasons unknown to the player, and so sets off to look for them. The player will soon find that the only way to accomplish this mission is to find eleven 'magic relics' and hand them over to an unnamed witch, who will then use her magic to help... but not everything is what it looks like and players are up for a couple of surprises.

The game has a heavy focus on ambient and is vague on the setting by design, and was inspired by Yume Nikki, OFF and Ecco the Dolphin, of all things.

Can be found here.

Lone Siren provides examples of:

  • Ambidextrous Sprite: The siren, as every other character in the game, is just mirrored whenever she switches directions.
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: The siren is topless but has no visible genitals.
  • Blackout Basement: The eastern caves.
  • Broken Bridge: All three of the abilities the siren can learn are necessary to progress.
  • Crapsaccharine World: It looks like a peaceful watery fairytale setting, except it's just the delusions of a little girl, wandering alone around the aftermath of a bombing.
  • Downer Ending: Turns out the Siren was just a scared girl imagining she was a mermaid to cope with the fact that everyone she knows is probably dead from a bombing raid.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: The witch sends the siren to fetch eleven magic items scattered throughout the sea to open the portal to the other sirens. There is also the four personal treasures, secret items leading to the secret ending.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: While the game has No Antagonist, the sirens’ disappearance was caused by an unseen military force that bombed the “sirens”- actually humans, as the resulting experience broke the protagonist so much that she retreated into a Mental World where she and everyone else are sirens.
  • Guide Dang It!: Getting the second ending requires you to get an item, ‘The Truth’. To get said item, you need to find four secret items- the personal treasures- then interact with the throne in the Palace, which seemed to do nothing prior, and place the items in the four statues with the bowls, and get it in the throne room. Once you have the item, you then have to interact with all four major NPCs and return back to the Palace.
  • Half-Human Hybrids: The Siren, by virtue of being... a mermaid.
  • Heroic Mime: The Siren never talks.
  • Multiple Endings:
    • The normal ending has the Siren give all the magic items to the witch, who constructs the portal to the other sirens. The credits play over a sequence of the Siren swimming to the distance.
    • The secret ending, obtained by collecting all four personal items and ‘The Truth’, leads to the revelation of everything being a delusion of a traumatized girl.
  • Musical Spoiler: The background noise at the palace. And how it stops forever depending on your actions.
  • One Hitpoint Wonder: In the rare occasions something attacks you, expect it to be fast and effective.
  • Race Against the Clock: The timed sequence at the caves, in which the siren falls from a waterfall onto solid land and has a little over three imites to slowly crawl her way back to water lest she suffocate to death.
  • The Maze: The Interior Reef zone.
  • Mental World: It's all in the head of a little, scared girl.
  • No Antagonist: The main conflict is the siren collecting magical items so the local witch can send her to wherever the other sirens are. There are eels that serve as enemies which will kill Siren, and sharks and octopi in the secret ending path, but none of them are actively causing the conflict. The ultimate reason for the sirens’ disappearance, the central mystery, is that they were humans killed in a bombing raid perpetrated by unseen forces.
  • The Reveal: The second ending reveals the reason all the other sirens vanished; the ‘sirens’ were humans who were killed in a bombing raid, and the protagonist was a girl traumatized by the bombing so much that she retreated into a Mental World.
  • Threatening Shark: A slew of these show up in the Tranquil Bay after you have ‘the Truth’. They will chase you if they see you and are the most threatening enemies in the game.
  • War Is Hell: The ending reveals that the “siren” is a human girl who snapped after a bombing raid destroyed her city and likely killed her parents and everyone else she knew, with the last visuals being of the city remains and one of the un-detonated missiles.