[PlayStation 4] To Leave Review
To Leave is a game on PlayStation that deals with a topic not many seem to like to talk about: mental health. Find out more in our To Leave review!
In To Leave, you pay as young Harm, a manic-depressive person who is struggling with a lot of things in life. You will learn more about his issues by reading what he writes in his journal, the narrative presented by the game, as well as with Harm’s interactions with the worlds he visits. To Leave is rated M for Mature, and right at the start, the game warns you about how its story will deal with existentialist themes that include topics such as depression, social alienation… and suicide. Because of this, the game also offers links to different websites where the people who consider they might need some help on those issues, can seek assistance.
As for the story’s setup, Harm is seeking a way to use some ancient technology to harvest the souls of every single person in the world, including himself, so that they can all go to heaven. The game uses some great-looking animated cutscenes to present to us the world of Harm, or at least the world he seems to be hallucinating after taking a weird green concoction he himself prepared. After drinking it, Harm appears to be taken to a bizarre world where he’ll fly around trying to reach the glowing fairy in his dreams.
Once you’ve completed that section and get to interact with a blue shiny magical door, the game proper will commence. The door allows Harm to fly through each of the areas he visits, but this is made possible because the door is actually sucking up Harm’s soul, feeding on it. It will be Harm’s soul that will also be used to feed the contraption guarding the entrance to each of the areas he visits, so little by little, he will be sacrificing a part of him to proceed with his plan – you can probably see where this is going.
The door needs more souls to operate and help Harm travel around each area he visits, and because of this, you need to pay attention to the counter in the lower-left corner of the screen which lets you know how much energy the door has. As you fly around, you also need to be careful of where you use the door to take you, since if you so much as ding the door, it will end up being destroyed, and you will need to repeat the section from the start – that is if you haven’t activated one of the checkpoints in the area. Run out of energy, and you will be kicked out of the door, with it demanding more of your soul to recover some Vibrance to carry on. The door can only land on the big squares with faces on them, and once you link two of them, you’ll be able to proceed to the next area.
As for trophy hunters, the good news is that To Leave has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy, with trophies split into ten Gold trophies and four Silver trophies, and several of them are awarded by progressing through the games 4-6 hours long story – depends on your skill level. There are three missable trophies that you must pay attention to if you want to get all trophies in a single run, one of which will require you to backup your save if you don’t want to have to start the game all over again. As a hint, be sure to visit the roof of your place, and to check Harm’s journal, so that you can have an easier trophy hunting experience.
To Leave is an interesting 2D platformer of sorts that deals with some very serious topics and issues, presenting them as small vignettes that showcase what could be going inside the mind of someone who is feeling depressed or who has suicidal thoughts. It’s also an entertaining release from a gameplay perspective, and one that we recommend you give a try on PlayStation 4.
This To Leave review is based on a PlayStation 4 copy provided by Freaky Creations.