Plants vs Zombies and To the Moon composer Laura Shigihara has turned her successful music writing career into full blown game development with Rakuen, an adventure game inspired by the Hayao Miyazaki classic Spirited Away.
Rakuen stars a young boy tired of being stuck in a hospital bed, and one day, he invites his mother to join him on an imaginative adventure through his favorite storybook. On his journey, he learns more about the other patients who share his hospital wing, finds hope in someday leaving the hospital, and ventures ever closer to the paradise island of Rakuen.
Shigihara cites Maniac Mansion, To the Moon and The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past as her main sources of gameplay inspiration, minus all the violence and actual action. This is a talking game, one of story, character development, mysteries and simple puzzle mechanics.
Rakuen has been in development for over a year, and it is scheduled for a PC release in early 2014. Shigihara doesn’t seem to be turning to crowd-funding for financial support, but her musical background should be enough reason to give the soundtrack a purchase to help aid in development. Be sure to check it out.