Last October, South Carolina made headlines when a thousand-year rainfall put much of the state underwater—that is, the chances of that amount of rain falling in a given year are 1-in-1,000. The storm drove residents from their homes onto dangerously flooded roads, leaving others trapped and in need of rescue.
Water Me, created as part of Indie Grits 2016’s Waterlines project, is a response to this historic flooding. Atmospheric and contemplative, the game explores the experience of being stranded in your house, cut off from the outside world by the encroaching storm, with only your potted plant for company. Your objective is to keep this plant alive.
Featuring real broadcasts from the South Carolina public news radio before and during the flood, Water Me takes place over the course of a week. Given the option of watering your plant and proceeding quickly to the next day or lingering over details, the player can fight the tedium of waiting out the storm by watching the water levels rise; listening to music or the news; providing your ailing plant with some artificial sunlight in the form of a flashlight beam; pruning its leaves; and, most illuminatingly, talking to it.
As the storm rages outside your open window, your tap water becomes contaminated and your plant, deprived of sustenance, begins to wither. Your morale withers along with it, turning your dialogue options from cheerful (“Look how healthy you look. I am a plant wizard.”) to guttural (“Fuck.”). Is it even possible to keep your plant, which you are asked to name at the start of the game, alive? That’s something you’ll have to find out.
Try to help your leafy friend survive the storm in Water Me here.