TYPE: Visual Novel Game
ROLE: Composer/Sound Designer
Photopsia is a psychological visual-novel horror game by Loutanina. It is inspired by the phenomenon of photopsia, were people see lights like stars dancing in their vision. The game tells the story of Iris, a young outcast girl who has been suspended from school for a week and will be home alone for the days to come. Unfortunately for her, misfortune always has her in its sights and is ready to strike at any time.
The horror-element of the game unfolds as the days progress, but it's not present at the start. The music for the first day is kept light and rather uneventful to illustrate both this and Iris' general boredom. However, beneath that exterior she is an inquisitive and curious girl, always looking for more than might be immediately apparent, so lots of little musical details were sprinkled throughout the track to reflect that side of her. The only indication of something more sinister going on is a deep, resounding drum that follows throughout the track and grounds both it and Iris.
The music for the game menu is much more atmospheric and creepy, in line with the beautiful but somewhat haunting imagery and to make it clear from the start that it is, in fact, a horror experience. To then go into the first day and have that expectation contrasted so strongly creates a wonderful sense of anticipation for the player.