There’s more than a little voyeuristic pleasure in playing Sara is Missing. It’s the video game equivalent of a found footage movie and while it’s far too short, the game compels you to learn about Sara while you figure the dark and disturbing nature of her disappearance.
Sara is Missing is a simulation game developed by Monsoon Labs, it’s quickly becoming a fan favorite on PC and Android. The player walks along, minding his own business, when he comes across a Sara’s phone.
The phone is severely damaged, but after you’re able to recover some data and talk with I.R.I.S., think SIRI if she had a soul, you begin the adventure. IRIS really wants to find Sara and enlists your help to do so. You must talk to IRIS and look through Sara’s pictures, videos, emails and texts to piece together what happened and ideally find her.
The game is instantly creepy with equal parts The Ring and The Red Room mythology. What’s striking about Sara is Missing is the realism put into the game. You peruse her videos and get an idea of who she is. You learn about her recent breakup with her boyfriend and how controlling her mother is.
For every item connected to the main storyline, there are 10 more that are just insights into Sara’s life. The game takes about 20 minutes to half an hour to complete and the first 10-15 minutes is the unlocking and learning phase of the game. Once you get to “live” texting and frightening phone calls, the pace is fast and furious.
I love this game. I’m a big fan of found footage movies and this might be the next generation of that genre. It’s available on both Android and PC, but I suggest downloading on your phone for the ultimate in realism. Your phone literally turns into hers.
There are a few drawbacks to the game. The conversations you have with IRIS and others must have canned responses and many times the game gives you a choice, but there isn’t a difference between which one you choose. It’s a very guided story.
The game is also very brief and while what it gives you is superb, you’ll be left wanting more. The ending itself is a cliffhanger and I hope the developers will take the games popularity into account and create either an update with more content or a sequel.
Monsoon Labs is small independent company and they have a hit on their hands with Sara is Missing. It’s a great start and only the beginning of a potentially great game series.