Revisiting Night in the Woods as an Allegory for the Millennial Condition
It’s not often that you stare into the deep well of video games and find your own reflection staring back at you, but the first time I played Night in the Woods, I saw myself in Mae Borowski’s nightmare eyes. From her snarky cynicism to her steadfast rejection of the world, I saw flaws in Mae that mirrored my own, but on a much larger scale, mirrored the overall sense of nihilism and defeat that characterises the millennial worldview. Mae, to me, became a representation of a generation of silenced voices, and of uncertain futures.
Ostensibly, Night in the Woods is a game about the intriguingly odd Mae Borowski returning to her hometown of Possum Springs after dropping out of college, but beneath its charming surface, it represents all the horrors of the postmodern millennial condition. It is a game unafraid of exploring the context of the world in which it takes place, drawing parallels between Mae’s circumstances, and the financial and emotional struggles of the current generation of young people.