Vote now for May 2022's TA Playlist game

By The TA Playlist Team,
As you spend April sneaking around Masaf, Jerusalem, Acre and the rest of the world, stabbing left, right and centre, in our current TA Playlist game, Assassin's Creed, it is now time to choose a game ready for next month.

While April had a more fun theme, choosing from a set of games that have terrible movies based upon them, this month we’ve decided to choose a more serious theme. In some places around the world, May is a month for Mental Health Awareness, with this year’s theme in the UK being loneliness.

We’ve chosen a selection of four games that tackle mental health issues in one way or another. A quick note, you’ll notice that some of the most prominent games to feature mental health issues — such as Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, Night in the Woods, and Child of Light — haven’t been nominated. As they have previously been featured TA Playlist games, they are no longer eligible to be chosen again. That said, they are all incredible games and we highly recommend you try them out. Onto our selections!

Sea of Solitude

Sea of Solitude

Kicking off our list is a game that matches well with the loneliness theme. Sea of Solitude is an action-adventure game developed by Jo-Mei Games, and was originally released on Xbox One in 2019.

In it, you play a young woman named Kay. She has such a strong feeling of loneliness that her inner feelings of depression, hopelessness, and abandonment take on the form of frightening beasts and fantastical creatures, turning her into a monster. You must guide Kay through a seemingly empty flooded city and interact with its scaly red-eyed inhabitants to reveal why Kay turned into a monster, helping lead her towards tranquillity as she faces off against relentless beasts of her own making who want to see her capsize and drown, unless she can summon the inner strength to face them.

Sea of Solitude holds a 3.62 out of 5 rating here on TA and can be completed in 5-6 hours. It’s been started by nearly 31,000 people, with just under 4,600 having completed it. It’s available on Xbox Game Pass, via EA Play.

Celeste

Celeste Portrait

Celeste is our second nomination. It is developed by Sickhead Games and was originally released back in early 2018.

Celeste is actually the name of the mountain that our heroine sets out to climb, and your only goal is to reach the summit. However, we quickly find out that this is no ordinary mountain. It's a place of ghosts, strange magic, and ruined cities, which seem to take the essence of the characters' inner selves and make them real. The mountain requires our heroine to challenge her inner demons of anxiety and depression in order to reach its peak. On top of that, it’s also an enjoyably challenging platformer with interesting and beautiful level design, being simple to learn but requiring some patience to master. It also has an incredible soundtrack. For those who struggle, you’ll find that the accessibility options can dramatically reduce the difficulty, but we implore you to try the game without.

Celeste currently holds a 4.06/5 community rating and is expected to take 8-10 hours to complete, although, without the accessibility options, it’s estimated to take closer to 20-25 hours. It was available with Xbox Games with Gold in January 2019, and for those looking for more tips, we have a great walkthrough here on TA written by TheOnlyMatto.

Limbo

limbo

Our third choice is Limbo.

Developed by Playdead and released in 2014 (although the original Xbox Live Arcade version was released back in 2010), Limbo is a puzzle-platformer game set in a sparse, quiet world with no music and no colour. You play as a lonely child who must journey across a bleak and dangerous landscape to reach someone he loves, namely his sister. Limbo lays on its themes thick, demonstrating loss, depression, and grief with an attack on your sense of sight and sound. The black-and-white world is cruel, violent, and filled with dangerous traps. The game itself is interesting, with many of the achievements being based around finding the locations of a handful of hidden collectables and finishing the story (with the notable addition of a sub-five-death run of the game).

Limbo has a 4.06/5 rating on TA, although the original arcade game currently sits at 4.26. A mere 3% of the game’s almost 130,000 players have completed it, with the completion expected to take 6-8 hours.
As always, if Limbo wins, you will get a TA Playlist credit for unlocking an achievement in any stack of the games; Limbo, Limbo (Xbox 360) or Limbo (Windows).

Life is Strange: Before the Storm

Farewell screenshots

Our final pick for this month is Life is Strange: Before the Storm, a point-and-click adventure game developed by Deck Nine Games and released back in 2017.

Set three years prior to the events of Life is Strange, you’re put into the shoes of 16-year-old Chloe Price. It’s fair to say that Chloe has been through a lot, as two years prior to the story beginning, her father was killed in a car crash and her best friend moved away. She struggled to come to terms with events that have had such an impact on her life. She embodies a torn character, caught between a deep urge to rebel, raise a middle finger to everything and leave, and the impossible wish to return to the peaceful normality of her past. The moral dilemmas that you face and the choices you make affect the entire story, as you get to see the world through Chloe’s eyes.

Life is Strange has a 4.05/5 rating on TA. Including all the DLC episodes, it can be completed in 6-9 hours, with 51% of the site’s 53,000 players having done just that. If you’re looking for any help with the achievements, our walkthrough should help you to get everything finished off.

Let us know which of these four games you’d pick to play for May’s TA Playlist.

If you’re ever in need of mental health support or are affected by any of the experiences you feel in games or other media, please do reach out. There are lots of organisations that specialise in help and support. Some of the most prominent UK organisations can be found here.
Which game should the community play for May 2022's TA Playlist?
  • Celeste22.8% (264)
  • Life is Strange: Before the Storm24.27% (281)
  • Limbo27.03% (313)
  • Sea of Solitude25.91% (300)
We've had 1158 responses.
The TA Playlist Team
Written by The TA Playlist Team
The TA Playlist is a monthly community event. Everyone votes on which of four games to play, and then we all play through it in the following month. There's a dedicated hub to discuss everything about the game, from story beats to gameplay tips – and of course, you can track your achievement progress during the month as well. TA Playlist was created by Mark Delaney and is now run by Miles, Nici and Chewie.