Set out on a cross-country journey to win back the love of your life and endure the hardship of making story-defining choices that affect your life and the lives of those around you.
User reviews: Very Positive (799 reviews)
Release Date: May 21, 2014

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Buy Always Sometimes Monsters: Soundtrack Edition

Includes 2 items: Always Sometimes Monsters, Always Sometimes Monsters - Soundtrack

 

Recommended By Curators

"A creative choice and consequence simulator that while not heavy on graphics and gameplay, is a very interesting "create your own story" game."

Reviews

“Always Sometimes Monsters deals in chaos and quantum theories – in every second of our lives, we make choices that forever impact our timelines going forward, dictating whether we keep or lose friends, maintain a job or succeed in our goals. We are the masters of our destinies, Always Sometimes Monsters says – but we can't control other people's lives. That's where it gets tricky.”
4/5 – Joystiq

“It's an earnest look at life under tough economic pressure, at love when things don't go according to plan and at a creative career during its shittiest lows. It has a lot to say, and importantly, it speaks from the heart.”
8/10 – Polygon

“Always Sometimes Monsters isn't the first game to get clever with morality. It's not the first game that's had a few grey areas. It also isn't about either of those. It's about perspective. It's about empathy. It's about who we are and why we do what we do. That narrative is one of contradiction and hypocrisy, because that's what real people are about.”
9/10 – Eurogamer

Content Warning

Always Sometimes Monsters has content dealing with racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, mental health, sexual assault, child abuse, animal abuse, drug abuse, and suicide.

About This Game



Out of money and out of luck you find yourself heart broken and on the verge of collapse. Your landlord's taken the key back, you can't finish your manuscript, and your beloved is marrying someone else. With no choice but to handle whatever life throws at you, you set out on the open road on a mission to win back the love of your life. The story from there is up to you. Can your life be salvaged, or are we always sometimes monsters?

Choice
A story-driven experience focusing on relationships and emotional bonds rather than traditional RPG combat and adventuring. Indecision is your enemy and empathy is your weapon in a quest to earn one last chance to win back the love of your life.

Circumstance
Choose from characters of different gender, race, and sexual preference and live through the common experiences and unique hardships of each based on your selection. NPCs may treat you differently based on your gender, race, or sexual preference opening and closing different paths along the way.

Consequence
Each playthrough is filled with a staggering number of diverging paths that can be discovered through both overt actions and subtle choices in conversation. The journey you experience will be tailored to your personal ethical compass as your decisions both conscious and subconscious change your fate.



Download the original Always Sometimes Monsters soundtrack by LASER DESTROYER TEAM featuring 15 remastered tracks from the game. Available on Bandcamp.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7, or 8 (32-bit or 64-bit)
    • Processor: Intel Pentium 4, 2.0 Ghz or faster
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 1024 x 768 desktop resolution or better
    • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
53 of 78 people (68%) found this review helpful
72.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
Wow, this game is good.

I'm a sucker for any game with a good story and Alway Sometimes Monsters does not disappoint. Not only does this game feel real but it also makes you think. I really do enjoy the simple graphics and I just love games that let you chose your sexuality instead of forcing you to be straight.

I want more games like this.
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16 of 18 people (89%) found this review helpful
13.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
Pre-emptive warning: I haven't spoiled any major plot points, but there are some tonal spoilers for one of the game's endings.

I err on the side of recommending this game, but I can't claim that it isn't very deeply flawed. Its main failing is that the story is about a lot of things, but the ending is 100% reliant on whether or not you "win back" your love interest. Personally, I thought it would be most satisfying to play a character initially very deeply set on reconnecting with his ex, but gradually coming to terms with the breakup and, in the end, letting the ceremony go uninterrupted. In this playthough, I had been successful in almost every aspect of my life: religiously keeping a journal, participating only in activities I believed in, and treating everyone with kindness. My character's future was promising. So, what ending did I get?

The one where I'm suicidal, nihilistic and alone because I couldn't bare the pain of losing my ex-girlfriend, who I'd had every intention of getting over on the way to her wedding. This is the only ending possible if you fail to "win her back", regardless of your other achievements or the way you've roleplayed your character. The game as a whole could be massively improved by the removal of the framing device at the beginning and end, as, for many endings, it fundamentally doesn't make sense and stands contrary to the story's themes. There's a fine post-credits scene, but it didn't negate my confusion at my character's hysterical response to making a perfectly fair, mature decision that, in my mind, caused him no great pain. It was a very "Huh?" moment for me.

As for the rest of the story, it's pretty good. Tonally uneven but not at all bad, and I genuinely enjoyed most of the campaign. The trip was gruelling but satisfying, with more than its share of close calls and poignant moments, and it felt like I was coming to the end of a long journey when I finally arrived at the ex's wedding location. It's not realistic, but there's a realness to it -- something humbling about the situations you're faced with, an earnestness in the way the game presents love, friendship, and hope. I guess that's why I felt degraded by the ending... I mean, how can my character be so nihilistic when the past month has probably been the most interesting in his life? He's learned so much, experienced so much, yet the game gives me a pitch-black failstate because I didn't adhere to the arbitrary goal. It's not only unsatisfying, but also troubling philosophically. I guess I would recommend this game with the cliche that you should focus on the journey, not the desitation... or play with the LI in mind. Either way.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 19
Damn! This game is funny as hell! The story is hilarious! And..(spoiler shizzle) investing in Sandviches? Rap-lyrics as password for your Happy Pills? I find this quite creative. If you want to be amazed, well just play it, and enjoy :3
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41 of 75 people (55%) found this review helpful
5.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 10
I really wanted to like this game, but I haven't been able to immerse myself in this world for reasons that escape me. |

I LIKE pixel graphics.

I LIKE thought-provoking concepts.

I LIKE things that aren't based around world war whatever or aliens or zombies or goats.

Too many of the situations in the game come off as trite. However, maybe I will eventually come around to enjoy this, but as it stands the world is/was too bland and forced.
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42 of 77 people (55%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
It's very difficult to recommend this game despite its rather lofty goals, which I respect. However, it fails to deliver on practically any of them, including an engaging premise. The consequence-driven gameplay is little more than a thinly-veiled illusion and the "adult choices" amount to little more than having tosubject yourself to menial, boring minigames in the semblance of menial, boring labor to earn a paycheck. There's little reality here, despite all its claims to be more mature and adult.

I respect what the devs tried to do, but ultimately, they failed.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
10.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 17
I think I would give this game an 8/10. I stayed up very late to finish it lol. Its nice to take a break from all of the first person shooter games and racing and simulators. This game was different. It expelled strong emotions you real feel for the characters. You have a lot of choice over what happens in this game. It would have been nice to be able to go back through
and do more once you've completed it, but there are 9 save file slots so if you save at certain points you can do that anyway. All in all I highly highly reccomend this game. It had a suprisingly long length to it taking around 10 hours for me to complete.
I HOPE A SEQUEL IS MADE!!!!
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
Always Sometimes Monsters is frequently tedious and rife with things that shatter any suspension of disbelief. I had high hopes for this game, but it really fails to deliver on its promise of an open story of moral ambiguity in favor of a tedious romp through a poorly explained plot that looks like it was written by a 15-year-old going through their "edgy" stage. There is a lot to do, but none of it feels especially worth doing, and a lot of it affects nothing so far as I can tell. Maybe there's a point to buying crab rather than chicken apart from wasting money. Also, ideas like "Sandwich Furtures" traded at a terminal in a sandwich shop, banks that require a security question to make a deposit, and day care providers willing to overlook an allegation of terrorism on a criminal background check are all sufficiently stupid (and not actually funny) that they do nothing but detract from the story.

The characters are too close to being parodies of archetypes to feel truly endearing, and some of them are introduced to disappear completely from the game moments later. I stayed at a girl's house for nine days and saw her exactly once, despite the fact that the she seemed like she could be an interesting and dramatic character. Meanwhile, I have to deal with the Kurt Cobain / Courtney Love analogues far more than I want. Too often, the choices I wanted to make I could not, and the questions I wanted answered were not.

Production-wise, the graphics are bland and inconsistent Some characters look completely different in their close-up versions and their walking versions. The imagery is often too cartoony for how dark the subject matter is trying to be (although a lot of that "darkness" comes off as a ham-fisted attempt at shock value), but not cartoony enough to feel like more than a bland vaguely anime look. The sound effects are ear-bleedingly jarring at times, with obnoxious beeps and sudden bursts of animal noise contrasted by the near complete silence of the game world apart from the music (of which I have generally few complaints). Even when the sound effects are appropriate, the lack of other appropriate sound effects make them feel out of place. If that was a design decision, it was a terrible one, but judging by the overall production value, I suspect they just couldn't be bothered to put any serious work into them.

I'm glad I got this as part of bundle, because I'd feel cheated if I paid for this by itself.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
10.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
So I don't usually write this sort of stuff but I felt like this game deserved an exception. So what I have to say about this game... Always Sometimes Monsters is simply engaging. Whitout giving away to much of it's stoyline, which frankly it is nearly imposible to spoil anything, this was one of the few games I've played lately that made made me actually care for my character and their outcome in the story. Maybe it's because you can be whomever you want and pick any choices you feel like, or maybe because this is a regular story about a regular person. Your character is not a hero, it's not a villian, they are just trying to get on with their lifes trying not too make any wrong choices, which is also kind of difficult because life is like that, at the end, you always have one or two wrong choices.

So, as a tl;dr, this game is one lil' neat indie game that explores so many issues, many of them feel wrong, some of them feel right. Just like life itself. I would recommend this to anyone wanting to expercience a different kind of story.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
9.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
This game proove that the story building is the most important thing to develop while playing an RPG game... This game will for sure stay in your head for a long time and willing to re-play again to live the story even deeper! This game rocks and need to be more well know!
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
23.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
First of all i'd like to state that i am not over-exagerating anything, and i'd also like to state i'm italian so i apoligize for bad grammar.


ASM is a romantic choose your own adventure game of two regular people that happen to be seperated.


Now i'm not gonna lie, i got the bad ending. And it was cruel, so cruel that it lead to me rethinking about everything in my life, the fact that i wanted to become a writer didn't help. I did tear up, alot. And well, this game left a print in my heart. Seriously this is up in my top 3 fave games.


Bad thing is, i don't replay games. I play them personally and what i would do in their situation, with the choices i made,


[SPOILERS]

i attempted to object a wedding, confessed my love, and got rejected, only to find out my best friend was getting married with my "ex-lover". This, hurt my feels. Because i grew SO attached to these characters, and in the end, where did he wind-up? Some homeless sh*thead living in the gutter. i felt for the dude, and almost shot him due to his misery. But i didn't. I couldn't. After this ending i definantly turned off my computer and took a long bath to think about my life.









11/10. Not even kidding. New Favorite.
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18 of 33 people (55%) found this review helpful
9.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
The idea behind the game is good, but the title is ruined by money farming in order to proceed in the story. If you want achieve the best ending, you need an insane amount of money, and still the ending will be simply awful.
Also there is not a moral dilemma, since you can play as a bad or good guy, choices are always clear and you won't be forced to act badly to complete your goals.
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23 of 43 people (53%) found this review helpful
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
God. This game tries, it really does, but for every element that could have been masterfully executed, it is marred by a trite and pretentious attitude about the whole thing.

I don't need happy endings, I don't need to be the hero, I don't even need to be straight in the games I play. What I do need, however, is fun, and there isn't any to be found here. As far as real life simulators go this is about as real as it gets, since bland scenario after bland scenario is churned out with the enthusiasm that is only matched by the main character (whom I've named Plod) as he lists his way through a life that could have easily been lived out on our own if we weren't to busy playing video games that were actually fun.

While the argument could be made of "That's the point, it's supposed to be about the world." it's honestly ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥, since games don't need to be disgustingly boring to make a commentary on common culture. If your game's biggest feature is the fact that your choices have consequences (read: 'molyneuxism') then it's not really a game is it?

Avoid this game at all costs if you value spending your spare time having fun. If you really want to play it, you can perfectly emulate the experience by wearing a flannel t-shirt, identifying as the opposite gender while being sexually attracted to that gender, sticking your thumb up your ♥♥♥, and thinking about how upset you'd be if you had to bury your grandkids right after your cis-gendered children were diagnosed with cancer.

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26 of 49 people (53%) found this review helpful
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
This is another game that tries really, really hard to be art, and fails on pretty much all counts.

The artwork, which was in fact made in RPG Maker, looks awful, and is yet another game that tries to use 'pixel art' to cover up a fundamental laziness with the over all design.

The story is trite, comes off as having a lot of forced conflict, and has some of the worst writing I've ever seen in a game. The choices are arbitrary, making more of a cosmetic difference than a substantive one, and never really feel important.

All in all, this game is a victim of the "style over substance" design philosophy, and ends up not even having a good style to cover the lack of substance.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
25.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
While it's not exactly strong in the gameplay aspect, the story and choices are more than enough to keep you going through till the bitter or sweet ending.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
18.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
Got this through the humble bundle when I had origonally bought it for Insurgency. I absolutely loved this game. Would buy again! :)
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 12
I was constantly bored or frustratingly wondering what the heck I'm supposed to be doing while playing this game. Despite trying to be a game about choices and stuff like that, there's a lot of hard triggers that you need to activate to advance the story. There's a stamina/hunger mechanic that isn't talked about at all so I have no idea what the importance of that is. Finally, I just found the story to be uninteresting and dull. I didn't play for longer than an hour though, so maybe it gets better, but there's lots of really fun games out there that don't feel like I'm wasting my time waiting for some payoff, and I just don't have the time to devote to this game. I can tell a lot of thought was put into the story in this game, and maybe I would be willing to give it a chance when I feel like I have more free time, but it's just not enough fun/minute to justify playing right now for me.

Give it a try if you like thoughtful, interesting story-driven games and don't mind if the visuals aren't super high-quality, and don't mind slow paced or relatively low-thrill games.
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5 of 8 people (63%) found this review helpful
10.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 12
Awesome game, choice drives you through a journey you make. Your decisions have weight and they will effect you. Nice game, I would love to see more with this game or maybe something else by this team where you full on create a character and have all the choice and things implmented; but awesome game. Took me like 10-11 hours to beat the game with one playthrough and I will probably play it again. Also its in a humble bundle right now so you can get it for a dollar, so you really dont have a reason to not get it!
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7 of 12 people (58%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Traditional rating : 6.5/10
Personal Rating : "Worth trying"


Well, it brings back memories of playing an old RPG game on snes. Probably teenage from 2k era hardly enjoy this.
The story itself is fine, not so much to tell, and the gameplay seems like repetitive after a while. The game is made on RPG Maker, there's not many good games made from them, but this one is an exception.
I will divide this in pro & cons.

Pro
+ 16bit music, you know, for nostalgia reason?
+ Text based dialogue, you know, for nostalgia reason?
+ The story is the main courses in this game, It's not the story about you crush zombie's head or killing the monster, it's about you fighting your way out of this cruel world. Yes, the "Monster" is our society. You're trying to survive from harm of our social integration.


Cons
- Sometimes there's a choice in dialogue that if you choose wrongly it will end (game over) the game and start again from save points. This game only auto-save your progress between map/stages , the choice sometimes appear at the middle of the playthrough. It really sucked to start all over again. You know, if there's a choice it should be having a different outcome of the story, not end or make it "game over".

- Some events only triggered if you walk over it (old styles) and you can literally don't know what to do if there's no event triggered. So yeah, you will walk almost all over place to make the event triggered and thats kinda cheap trick, I belive I can make event triggered by any other means in RPG Maker.




TL;DR
Anything else is so-so, the story was fine, the artworks kinda meh, the soundtrack is more of nostalgia thing rather than good cover.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
14.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 20
Warning: Do not buy this game unless you like story driven games. Not much gameplay to be found here other than some minigames.

First of all this looks like it was made on RPGMaker but I understand all the devs had to make this work is this so it does the job.
Artwork is fine, nothing amazing but it serves its purpose. As far as the writing goes its the strongest part of the game but that doesn't say as much as you would think.
At first the game feels very interesting but it kinda gets dumbed down as time goes on, thankfully I didn't lose my interest before the game ends so that's a plus.
So the story goes like this, your ex is getting married and you got invited, you must reach him in 30 days in time for the wedding and you must survive / gather money until then. You are given multiple choices of fulfuling that goal. Some are good and some are not so good (like stealing) It has multiple endings. The game claims that there are no good or bad choices just choices and consequences but I tend to disagree.
At the end of the day the most important choices you make will be defined by how much money you got and not by what you want to choose. So it kind of contradicts itself.
All in all it is a well written game with some fun little moments, if you are not a fan of not reading a lot with a short attention span this is not the game for you.
I personally would wait for a sale first.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
15.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
This is literally the best game i have ever played.

Its more than just a game to have fun. It is a story, your story.

It hit home with me if im honost, now how many games have you played that have done that? That make you just stop....speachless....and make you come to terms with the choices you've made and have to make to validate your previous choices, or just forget it all together?


-Spoiler warning, kind of, since things could change somewhat depending on you?-




I killed a man infront of his 4 kids to get a car to travel and see my Ex who I still loved and wanted to win back before she got married. I ended up finding out she was set to marry my old best friend. Threw a series of mistakes i ended up saving my old friend from getting murdered herself and I let the wedding go as planned so my ex could be happy at the expense of ruining my career and ruining my life.

All the time and effort I put in to getting to her at the expense of other peoples lives, sometimes literally, for my own happiness...and at the end of the day I made the choice at the expense of my life, for her happiness.

At the end of the day life is a cruel, shallow thing. The question is, how cruel and shallow are you willing to be for your own happiness? That is, if you even achieve it.
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