Back to Bed: A New Video Game Inspired by the Surreal Artwork of Escher, Dali & Magritte

If you’ve ever looked at a mind­bend­ing, impos­si­ble piece of archi­tec­ture designed by M.C. Esch­er and thought, well, I would love to play that, then you just might love Back to Bed, a video game for Win­dows, Mac, Google Play and Playsta­tion.

Sim­i­lar to last year’s aes­thet­i­cal­ly beau­ti­ful archi­tec­ture puz­zle game Mon­u­ment Val­ley, play­ers make their way through 30 lev­els of increas­ing­ly dif­fi­cult land­scapes. You play a dog-like com­pan­ion that tries to stop his sleep-walk­ing own­er Bob from falling off into space by plac­ing objects in his path. But, as with these games, you must use log­ic to access some of the objects and think­ing sev­er­al moves ahead stretch­es the brain.

back to bed

The giant, green apples recall Rene Magritte, melt­ed watch­es are out of Dalí, and the voice that says “The stairs are not what they seem”? We have anoth­er Lynch fan in Bed­time Time Dig­i­tal Games’ crew. And the whole nar­colep­sy theme has a bit of the ol’ Cali­gari going for it.

The small com­pa­ny con­sists of for­mer stu­dents who cre­at­ed the game “in a freez­ing old ware­house on the har­bor in Aal­borg, Den­mark,” accord­ing to their bio. They forged ahead with the game after a Kick­starter cam­paign and what sounds like many years lat­er, they won the stu­dent show­case at San Francisco’s Inde­pen­dent Games Fes­ti­val. That attract­ed investors and with actu­al fund­ing, they’ve rewrit­ten the game to make it real­ly shine on HDTVs.

Despite the sus­pense­ful game­play, there’s much that’s relax­ing in the worlds of Back to Bed, from its chil­dren book graph­ic design—everything looks airbrushed—to its hyp­not­ic, hyp­n­a­gog­ic sound, includ­ing a very Bri­an Eno-esque ambi­ent sound­track.

“Back to Bed, the game says out loud in a drone, half-awake voice when you fin­ish a lev­el. But this addic­tive game might just keep you up lat­er than usu­al.

via Vice’s Cre­ator’s Project

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Meta­mor­phose: 1999 Doc­u­men­tary Reveals the Life and Work of Artist M.C. Esch­er

Play the Twin Peaks Video Game: Retro Fun for David Lynch Fans

The Inter­net Arcade Lets You Play 900 Vin­tage Video Games in Your Web Brows­er (Free)

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the FunkZone Pod­cast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, read his oth­er arts writ­ing at and/or watch his films here.

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