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Video Game / Taut

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Taut is a 2007 freeware horror game made in RPG Maker, which takes heavy inspiration from Silent Hill in terms of visuals and the movies of David Lynch. It can be downloaded here; both the original German version, and the English and French translations.

The protagonist is a little girl, Judith Neelley, who is planning to leave town with her mother soon. Things are packed and they could leave at any moment, but when she gets up on this day, her mother is gone. Thinking nothing of it, Judith whiles away the time. But then, someone breaks into her house. Strange events occur and, frightened, Judith runs away. The entire town is abandoned.

More and more questions arise in her: Where is her mother? And everyone else? Who is this weird creature that seems to haunt Judith? And why do none of these questions seem to get any proper answers?

Confused and seeking refuge, Judith heads to the one place she finds comfort and memories in: her school...

Taut contains examples of:

  • Creepy Doll: Judith's teddybear, which seems to teleport inside her house a few times. It later is found ripped apart in the basement, in a puddle of what is believed to be its own blood.
  • Demonic Possession: The policewoman Maria, who helped Judith, becomes possessed and tries to kill her. The protagonist manages to escape.
  • Haunted Technology: Apparently the case with the TV in Judith's house, which turns itself on a few times.
  • Missing Mom: Judith's mother up and vanishes out of nowhere.
  • Multiple Endings: Several over the course of the game, most depend on where the player heads off to, once they leave the house.
  • Save Point: The game is saved by using telephones. They tend to be in sensible places, like a house's hallway or a secretary's office.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The static filling the screen when the protagonist is attacked is heavily based on Silent Hill.
    • A puzzle in the game requires the player to pour an acidic solution onto a dead hand, to disintegrate it and gain access to a key, the same solution a puzzle in Silent Hill had.
  • Unexpectedly Abandoned: The entire town is devoid of human life. Maybe. Except for the protagonist, there is one little girl to be found in the park who is implied to be a ghost.