Up All Night
Horror/Mystery/Visual Novel
Struggling with the emotional aftermath of a grisly tragedy, recent high school grad Nick is dragged to a remote cabin by his loving mom for a winter weekend getaway. Unfortunately, the vacation becomes irreparable when an unforeseen blizzard leaves his mom trapped in town and Nick stranded in the isolated cottage.
Contribution: Narrative design, writing, UI/UX design, original programming
NOTE: For serious employment inquiries a game key can be made available upon request.
Gameplay Sample
In-Game Screenshots
Sample Scene Game Script - Alternate Paths Included
Sample Scene Script
I woke up, shuddering and coated in chilly sweat that rolled down my forehead and into my eyes. A groan escaped my lips and I pressed my palms into my closed eyes until I saw stars.
Nick: (I wish I could stop those dreams. At least I won't be alone again tonight...)
It was light outside now and the TV was still on. The morning news was playing.
Newscaster: "Quite the storm we had last night! The pass up to Aspen Lodge has been closed until the city can plow it. Hope you vacationers have a cozy fire and a book because it's going to be at least another night before it's clear!"
I groaned again. That was not the sort of news I wanted to hear, not at all.
Nick: (Nevermind then... I guess it's another day alone. No reason to wait around here, might as well go out and get some air.  Maybe I'll run into that guy. What was his name? Felix?)
Nick: (Or maybe I'll get lucky and get mauled by that bear, I won't have any more nightmares then... ha...)
I opened the door to leave and nearly walked into Felix who was standing just outside.
Nick: "Ah! W-what the..."
It was snowing lightly, the sky still overcast from last night's storm. He sighed and rubbed at the bridge of his nose as if he had a headache.
Felix: "I wanted to apologize for last night. I can be a little... oh, I don't know. Intense? And here I am, surprising you again. I've made a bad impression, haven't I?"
There was a light dusting of snow on his shoulders and there were slight bags under his eyes that made him look tired. He was holding a small basket at his side, the contents wrapped in blue checkered cloth.
Nick: (It looks like he didn't get any sleep last night. Was he out looking for that bear?) 
Nick: "It's fine, don't worry about it." 
Felix: "Most of the people who come up here are either retired or parents with young kids. Needless to say they aren't great for conversations that hold my interest."
Felix: "I may have gotten a bit carried away with my introduction. It was simply refreshing to meet someone like you."
Nick: "I told you, it's fine. I mean, I'm not exactly normal myself."
Felix: "Yes... true. You seem like someone who understands isolation."
Nick: "Um... yeah, I guess. But I'm only here for a couple days, it isn't like I'm gonna be here forever."   
Felix: "Well, of course. I'm not a fool, Nick. I was thinking I should come over tonight... I would like to get to know you better. I would regret it if our time was defined by one single, strange meeting."

“Yes, come over.”
"No, don't come over."

Nick: "Sure, I guess?"
Felix: "Oh, good. I was worried I'd put you off too much. Here. As an apology."   
He handed me the basket he was holding. I unfolded the cloth covering the contents.
Inside were a couple bottles of sparkling water, a bunch of individually wrapped toffees, and a package of off-brand peach rings.  
Felix: "The um... guest shop is a little low on selections for this sort of thing but... it's just a little something to apologize about the phone. See you tonight then?"
Nick: "Uh, yeah, see you tonight I guess."   
Nick: (He's kinda weird but I guess it's better than being stuck alone for another night.)   
Felix: "I'll see you then. Maybe I'll bring a movie. Unless you have a suggestion?"
Nick: "Well, I'm kinda stuck up here so, nope, no suggestions. Unless you have a way to get wireless internet I don't know about."   
Felix: "No. Unfortunately, it's rather expensive. The phone lines took quite a while to get hooked up... and, well, you know how reliable those are." 
Nick: "Yeah, I guess that's too much to ask for. Anyway, guess I'll see you tonight? I'm sure whatever you end up bringing will be better than infomercials and phone games."
Felix: "Oh, well, I may end up disappointing you... I don't have many... things like that."   
Nick: "Don't you live up here? What the heck do you do?"
Felix: "Oh, mostly working. I read at times. I also go for walks fairly often, I mean, with a lovely landscape like this how could I resist?" 
Felix: "Anyway, see you tonight. Have fun exploring." 
With a wave he turned to leave. I guess I really would be alone for the day. Unless...
Nick: "Hey, you wouldn't want to come with me, would you?"   
Felix glanced back and seemed to consider my offer. For a moment he looked like he was about to agree before shaking his head regretfully.
Felix: "No, no. I have too much to do. I do look forward to hearing about your day though. Perhaps you can provide some suggestions for freshening this place up. Maybe we can explore more tonight."
Nick: "I dunno about going out at night. What with the bear and all."
A small smile creased his lips and it made me realize just how tired he looked.
Felix: "My current project, actually. I need to preserve the safety of my guests."
He continued on his way and left me standing at the door, holding the strange gift basket he'd given me.
I trudged around the side of the house, the bright white snow making me squint. There was a trail nearby with a frozen pond about three miles away that my mom had wanted to visit.
Nick: (I guess I could go check it out and let her know if it's worth her time.)
The air was strangely still after the harsh winds from the night before. It made everything feel less real.
Nick: (The trees are actually pretty beautiful out here, the bark is almost as white as the snow. It kinda looks like some sort of fantasy show or something.)
Then I saw it.
A blossom of red among the endless white.
The smear was so crimson bright that it gleamed like a beacon. I couldn't look away.
Nick: (What is it? A person?)
After I got closer I could see three hooves poking out of the layer of fresh snow.
Nick: (A deer maybe? Why the hell did I think that was a person? Maybe there really is a bear around here.)
???: "Ohhhh gross! What in the hell is that?"
Nick: (What the...?!)
The words cut through the silence and made me jump.
Nick: (A girl...?)  
She was staring at the deer corpse, her expression somewhere caught between disgust and fascination.
Nick: "You scared me! I didn't hear you come up. What are you doing out here?"
The girl gave me an annoyed look.
Girl: "Uhhh... Goin' for a walk? Looks like you were doin' the same thing. Or were you out lookin' fer dead stuff? That'd be pretty weird."


Nick: "What the...? No! I was NOT trying to find a dead deer..." 
Nick: (Damn it, my face is getting red... gotta keep it cool...)
Nick: "Some guy last night told me there was a bear around so I thought I'd take a look... uh, what's your name anyway?" 
Girl: "Oh! Name's Grayson!"
Grayson: "And man, that sounds like somethin' fun! A real live bear, huh? He ate that critter pretty damn good too didn't he?"  
Nick: "Uh... yeah... I guess... if ripping something's guts open is... uh... good. I'm Nick by the way."   
I cleared my throat. 
Nick: "Sooo... uh... you on vacation out here too?"   
Grayson: "I guess you could say that... If bein' stuck out in the middle of nothin' for three years counts as a vacation. You wanna look at that deer now?" 
Nick: "Sure, might as well. Nothing else to do up here, right?"  
I found myself grinning, which was weird since I was standing over a deer corpse.
Grayson: "Yer right about that! What'cha wanna look at first?"  

Look at the head
Brush away the snow
Don't look anymore

Look at the head:
The neck looked as if it had been crushed between a set of powerful jaws.
Nick: (Ughhhh...)
[Start Memory]
Brie: "I still can't believe you guys drove all the way out here to pick me up!" 
Tyler: "Don't look at me, he's the one that wanted to get you."   
Nick: "Well, I mean, I invited you to the party, so I figured... you know..."
Brie: "Are you BLUSHING?"
Nick: "Shut up!" 
Tyler: "Haha, you're super red man!"  
They were both laughing and I felt my cheeks burning.  
Brie: "Oh! Nick—!"  
Brie: "No! The road!"
Nick: "Shit!"
A shadow had darted out from the side of the road. Slender hooved legs stood frozen in surprise, shocked eyes glowing green in the glare of the headlights.
I swerved.
Nick: "!!!"
[End memory]
The eyes of the doe in front of me weren't gleaming with any light at all. They were gray and lifeless. The deer's mouth was hanging open slightly and its tongue had lolled out.  
Nick: "(It must have been panting on the ground as it died.)"  
Grayson: "Hey buddy, you okay? Niiiick!"
Grayson waved her hand in front of my face trying to snap me out of what must have been a very obvious daze.
Nick: "Sorry, I was... thinking about something."
Grayson: "Not a problem, don't worry about it. Pretty freaky how somethin' crushed its neck, huh? Some guy said there was a bear?"
Nick: "Yeah some guy came by last night and said something about a bear getting into the garbage. I guess it got into more than that."   
I gestured grimly at the dead deer.
Grayson: "You're in the cabins?"
Nick: "Yeah, it's just over there."  
I pointed back toward the tip of a cabin roof still visible in the distance.
Grayson nodded and peered over at the deer, her eyebrows furrowed in thought.
[return to examination]

Brush away the snow:
I could see more red under a lighter coating of snow that covered the deer's torso.
Nick: "(It must have been killed after the heaviest part of the storm had passed or it would have been more buried.)"
I brushed the snow away.
There was a deep, frozen pool of blood under the deer's exposed stomach. Viscera and organs trailed out into that congealed pool. The blood had overflowed into a second more shallow indentation in the ground.
Grayson: "Ugh... looks like a big paw print frozen in blood..." 
Nick: "Aren't bear paws pretty wide? Looks more like a giant dog print." 
Grayson: "Nah, that's way too big to be a dog. Gotta be a bear."
Nick: "Poor thing. I wonder if it was still alive when its guts were ripped out."
Grayson: "Well, don'tcha just sound like the life of the party..."  
Nick: "..."
Nick: "I don't go to parties anymore."
She rolled her eyes, hands placed firmly on her hips.
Grayson: "Way to be a downer."
I ignored her and bent down again to look at the body.
[return to examination]

Don’t look anymore:
[Main Script After Investigation]
Nick: (I know she's curious but this is making me feel sick.)
Nick: "Hey, I think I've had enough of this. Why don't we do something else?"
Grayson: "Sure, why not? What'cha wanna do?" 
Nick: (What should we do? Maybe I should invite her back to my cabin? No, wait, that's super weird! I just freaking met her!)
Grayson wandered off while I was thinking, then perked up and called back to me.
Grayson: "Ooooh look! More prints! Wanna follow ‘em and see what else that bear got up to?" 
Nick: (Uhm... Not really... what if there's another dead animal?)
Nick: "I don't know if—"
She ran up to me and grabbed my hand, pulling me toward the tracks she'd found.
Grayson: "Come on, it'll be fun! I've been damn bored for I dunno how long. I mean, you're the first friend I've made in forever!"  

Pull Away
Go with her

Nick: "Yeah it's been a while since I've made a friend, too." 
She grinned.
Grayson: "So, since we're friends and all, what're you doin' up here anyway?"   
Nick: "Oh, my mom made me come out here for a vacation. Guess she thought it'd take my mind off things." 
Grayson: "It work?" 
Nick: (Not unless constantly remembering the worst night of my life was her goal...)
Nick: "No, not exactly. What about you?"
We trudged after the animal tracks while we talked, our breath misting in the chill air.

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