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Video Game / Sense: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story

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Sense - 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story is a 2.5D Survival Horror game developed by Suzaku and published by Top Hat Studios Inc. It was initially released for PC on August 25, 2020, was pulled from store shelves quickly after, and was re-released as the 1.1 version in September 2020, with later Nintendo Switch and Play Station Vita releases in January 2021. A Play Station 4 version was released in February 11, 2021.

In 2083 Neo Hong Kong, a young woman named Mei-Lin Mak is dragged into a maelstrom of supernatural horror. As she peers deeper into a century old mystery, Mei will be forced to question her perception of reality and whether she trusts her cybernetic eyes. Under the neon lights of a cyberpunk dystopia, the ruins of the 'Chong Sing Apartments' hides a bloody mystery illuminated by both the traditions of Chinese folklore, and the innovations of the industrial future. If there is any hope of escaping this nightmare, Mei-Lin must explore this complex, piecing together the stories of 14 lost souls, and discover the truth of her own family curse.

A sequel, SENSEs: Midnight, was released on July 22nd, 2022. Unlike the first game, it's a fully 3D third-person game with Resident Evil style fixed camera angles. The game follows Uesugi Koho, a young woman who is streaming her midnight exploration of the long rumored-to-be-haunted Ikebukuro Walking Park to her online friends in the occult research club. However, after foolishly attempting to open the park's cursed "Midnight Door", she ends up trapped inside the park being hunted by a relentless Onryo which seeks to consume her spirit energy.


  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The game is set in 2083, only slightly more than half a century from the date of release.
  • Adventure Game: 90% of the game is trying to figure out what objects are needed to move onto the next level of the haunted apartment building. Sometimes in very odd combinations like melting down a statue in order to make keys.
  • Augmented Reality: A possible explanation for Mei's ghostly encounters. See Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane.
  • Author Tract: A couple of times during the game, the writers take pot shots at people who dislike Fanservice in manga and a girl's toy. This includes saying the toy line (a Expy for Barbie) went out of business because girls didn't want to play with a "realistic" girl.
  • Big Bad: Fei Fei is the evil at the heart of the building and arranged the murder of the other tenants at her engagement party. She is a jiangshi and must be defeated in order to exorcise the hotel.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The "Normal" ending of the game ends the curse on the building but Mei is left paralyzed and possibly brain dead by the experience. You need to beat the game three times to get the "Secret" ending.
  • Body Horror:
    • Mei removes her cybernetic eyes to fix them in a dirty bathroom.
    • Mei can have her eyes pecked out by crows while still alive.
      • Mei can also be killed by feral cats in the same way.
    • One of the ghosts had his tongue, eyes, and ears cut off. By himself.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: Mei defeats Fei Fei at the top of the apartment building but this results in her soul being shattered into three parts and paralyzing her. She also loses one of her cybernetic eyes.
  • Buxom Beauty Standard: One of the women at the nightclub compliments Mei on her assets.
  • The Cameo: As a form of cross-promotion with another Cyberpunk title published by Top Hat Studios, the main protagonist of Synergia makes an appearance, and this game's protagonist appears in Synergia.
  • City Noir: Most of the game takes place at night, with dark streets and abandoned rooms lit up by neon signs and always-on televisions.
  • Closed Circle: The point of the game is to escape Chong Sing apartments.
  • Content Warnings: The store page for the PC release has a lengthy list of warnings towards the bottom, including "skimpy/semi-revealing outfits", "murder, suicide, and abuse", and "disturbing imagery, blood/gore, and violent character deaths". An official statement from the publisher states that they kept all of the original content intact and uncensored for the Switch release.
  • Corrupt the Cutie: Suk Yi is turned into a malevolent spirit by the dark energies of the place.
  • Crazy Cat Lady: Maddie Mao's apartment is full of vicious cats. She's also a vicious person herself who becomes a Cat Girl.
  • Cute Ghost Girl: Suk Yi is one of the least horrifying and malevolent ghosts in the apartment complex. She just wants you to play paper, rock, scissors with her as well as hide and seek.
  • Cyberpunk: As indicated by the game's subtitle, the setting is both gritty and technologically advanced, with the main protagonist having cybernetically enhanced eyes.
  • Domestic Abuser: Harold physically hit Maddie Mao repeatedly during their relationship until she accidentally killed him and chopped him up before putting him a suitcase.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: If you beat the game three times, Mei recovers from her coma and returns to normal life.
  • Eldritch Location: The Chong Sing Apartments are perfectly preserved from when they were first abandoned, full of evil spirits, and have things happen like doors disappearing or refusing to let people leave. Then you get to the floors where everything has giant manes of human hair growing out of the walls...
  • Expy: The Chong Sing Apartments are these for the apartments from Silent Hill 2.
  • Fanservice: The game actually lampshades this in-universe by having Mei listen to a news story about a manga that was controversial for its over-the-top fanservice. The creators saying, "Hey, it's all just for fun."
  • Guide Dang It!: Some of the choices and locations of items are counterintuitive. For example, to get a key to a room, you have to get a blueprint for it, melt down a sacred statue in a frying pan and then pour it into a mold to make the key.
  • Haunted House: The setting for the majority of the game is a haunted apartment building you find yourself accidentally trapped in.
  • Have a Nice Death: Ghosts can kill Mei in horrifying ways as well as events like her cybernetic eyes getting pecked out by crows.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Sally is a prostitute and addicted to plastic surgery but one of the nicest people in the apartment building.
  • Jiangshi: Fei Fei, Daughter of Father Yip, was turned into one by her ex-boyfriend Hwang.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Mei will steal everything not nailed down. Justified as it's a survival situation and the apartment complex has been abandoned for almost a century.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: It's revealed at the end of the game that someone may have hacked her cybernetic eyes and everything she saw was just put in there. It's unlikely, though.
  • Metalhead: Mei-Lin makes an off-comment at the beginning that she doesn't enjoy pop music and likes harder stuff.
  • Most Common Superpower: A very noticeable quality of Mei's design is this.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Mei certainly qualifies. Notably justified as she's actually going out on a blind date and wants to make a good first impression.
  • New Game Plus: To quote the store page, "Sense will be filled with secrets, only some of them will be revealed in a single play through. Some secrets wont be able to escape the spirit realm until the "Plus" appears". To get the Secret Ending where Mei recovers, you must beat the game three times.
  • New Neo City: The game's setting of Neo Hong Kong, which is actually Seattle.
  • Nice Guy: Jeong is one of the nicest in the building.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: It turns out that the reason the apartment building is haunted is due to Fu Hong, the owner of the building, sealing a bunch of dark spirits there despite the fact there was a powerful evil there. This made all of the other spirits incredibly powerful. His mentor even said that he should destroy all of the evil spirits before they rebelled.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game was inspired by unforgiving Horror games from the past, and to quote the developer, intentionally had "very limited saves, deep exploration, repeated trial and error, punishing deaths, and a reliance on careful reading and planning your actions are the things". This was slightly toned-down for version 1.1, due to QA feedback, but is still quite challenging.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Mei starts the whole plot rolling by burning the incense to appease the ancestors of a jerk who she needed to move the car of and traded favors with. This ends up attracting a horde of damned souls down on her head.
  • One-Hit Kill: The ability of the ghosts unless you have a Jade Bangle.
  • Outgrown Such Silly Superstitions: Christianity is apparently all but extinct but Taoism and Buddhism are thriving.
  • Point-and-Click Game: A classic example of the genre with all of the items, Insane Troll Logic, and more.
  • Serial Killer: Doctor Lai believed he was a Vigilante Man and targeted Yakuza but was actually one of these.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl: Mariko, one of the ghosts, is one of these.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Mei is trained by Fu Hong to become a Daoishi exorcist and sent to take down the apartment's evil spirits. Too bad it still isn't enough to beat Fei Fei without considerable personal cost.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Ghosts can be banished by having an offering made to their photo. Too bad most of these people have been dead for a century.
  • Wretched Hive: The Chong Sing Apartments was a hellhole when it was active, full of murder, child abuse, and betrayal even before it was literally haunted.