A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux

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HOW WE KNOW WE'RE ALIVE is a free hour long melancholy,  point-and-click narrative mystery set in the bible belt of Sweden.

"A mature and thought-provoking tale that will resonate with many people long after it has been completed"

Keen Gamer

"How We Know We're Alive will break your heart."

The Indie Games Website

"A deeply touching and emotional game that really hits hard. Highly recommended." 

Alpha Beta Gamer

Welcome to Härunga – a small industrial town in the bible belt of the mid–north of Sweden. You play as Sara, an aspiring writer who, after having been away for 10 years, returns home in order to investigate the tragic fate of her estranged best friend. 

The days grow short quickly this far up north – and the rain never seems to let up...

Lovingly crafted and richly animated, explore the melancholy atmosphere of a small town that time seemingly forgot. 

Meet old friends and enemies and piece together the mystery of what happened after your friendship tragically fell apart. 

As in life, what you say will impact things in hidden ways and not everything may be as it seems. Who is telling whose truth and can you know the difference? 

HOW WE KNOW WE'RE ALIVE is a passion project among friends and completely free for everyone. However, if you would really like to support this and future projects you can pay 2€ or more and get access to HOW WE KNOW WE'RE ALIVE – DELUXE EDITION which includes:

  • 5x High quality custom made desktop wallpapers
  • 6x High quality custom made phone backgrounds
  • 4x Animated custom made phone backgrounds
  • Mastered version of the original soundtrack including unused tracks, composed by Ivan Starenius
  • Digital ART BOOK, with detailed versions of used and unused sprites and artwork
  • A PDF of the original script, written by Imogen West-Knights

Created & directed by August Håkansson

Art & animation by Leo Köhler & August Håkansson

Written by Imogen West-Knights & August Håkansson

Original soundtrack by Ivan Starenius

Contact and press: hello@augusthakansson.com

Presskit: https://howweknowwerealive.com/presskit/

Motvind logo design: Andreas Knutsson

PlatformsWindows, macOS, Linux
Release date May 01, 2021
Rated 5.0 out of 5 stars
AuthorMotvind Studios
Tags2D, Atmospheric, Experimental, Female Protagonist, Pixel Art, Point & Click, Singleplayer, sweden, swedish
Average sessionAbout an hour
InputsKeyboard, Mouse


Download NowName your own price

Click download now to get access to the following files:

HWKWA_win.zip 95 MB
HWKWA_linux.zip 102 MB
HWKWA_macOS.zip 101 MB
if you pay $2 USD or more
if you pay $2 USD or more
if you pay $2 USD or more

Development log


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Viewing most recent comments 1 to 40 of 272 · Next page · Last page

Thank you,thank you,it touched my heart

I played this game almost a year ago and now that I have an itch account I want to leave my thanks—this story has left such a profound impact on me and articulated a lot of the anxiety I've felt with the passage of time and changing relationships. Very powerful work <3

I loved this game and it had me making theories and guessing the entire game, Loved the themes and the emotions in it, really makes you think. I recommend it to anyone. Check out my playthrough here

Wish we could claim this besides download. I never play games that I can't claim because I always forget about games I add to my collection.

heartbreaking, amazing short, highly recommended

That's so great ! The pixel art is perfect and the story is really immersive. Loved it :-)

The atmosphere was great from the start, the story and presentation made me feel a lot of things. Well-crafted little game!

It literally brought me to tears.... This game is so sad yet so beautiful...

Such a haunting game. Even though it's been a long time since I played it, I still randomly think of it, as the storyline resonates with me on a personal level. Main character comes back to their hometown, visits a grave of an old friend and starts to reminisce. Seems like a banal idea for a story, yet there is something so emotional and so touching it's hard to forget. Overwhelming feeling of guilt, and the urge to deny the neglect is shown in such a  simple form - game mechanics, graphics and spare style of writing. 

great game, great style!! loved it overall <33

Thanks for making a Linux version, the readme tells about the glitch and the script to run it, that is kinda convenient, except that you wrote the whole gamename into the script while the file is called differently, this does not work, it needs to call HWKWA_Linux_x86.x86... just wanted to say that before I forget it while playing... which I will do now :)

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This is the game only game I've fully cried playing. 10/10 please make more.

I think you by accident said 10/0 instead of 10/10

Shit, I meant 10/10

i played this game for 59 min and 59 seconds i just got played  

I am not crying, you are.

Amazing story, beautiful graphics. I have never played a agme like this before and I am so glad I found it.

i can finally comment about this game, IT WAS SO GOOD AND JUST OUTSTANDING. loved it!


Such a BEAUTIFULL game!!❤!!..I'm so glad i found it!..I purchased the deluxe edition and i loved the wallpapers and everything else that was included!!

Thank you so much for this game,i really hope you make more!!


made me cry. gorgeous experience, beautifully made. 

What a lovely game, looking forward to seeing what you do next!

There is no sound in Linux version... :((( The following appears in the log: "FMOD failed to initialize any audio devices, running on emulated software output with no sound." Pulseaudio on my system is working correctly & all other apps have sound. Anybody knows a solution for this?

now this just hits hard....damn

One of the best games I've ever played! Absolutely stunning artwork & great storyline :) 

heartbreaking :(

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I can't express how much the story moved me. It was so heavily emotional for me. The music and the graphics. Everything was well put together. I look forward to your future games

Absolutely amazing story with an important message. This is the kind of game that makes you reconsider some things about going through life. 

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You really have a gem here. I was not expecting at all to get so involved in this story, and by the end I was almost crying. THANK YOU, I can’t wait to see everything you do next!! Here’s my playthrough video :)


Wow. Simply Wow. Maybe best five bucks I spent since inception of the indie scene. That writing... Man, it is soooo good. I was simply stunned how great this little project is. So personal, nostalgic, emotional... Those two last scenes - on cemetery and then in the church - those hit me, as they say, right in the feels. Guys, you've made something truly special. You have a serious potential, please don't let it go to waste. I'm eagerly, like EAGERLY, await your next project. Big, huge thanks! I just wish there would be more games like this, and not that AAA-empty-monetized-to-hell crap.

P.S. Somehow I pictured every scene as a movie. It was so weird, as every scene went in my in parallel with my imagination how can it look as a movie. This was so weird, as it happened to me only a couple of times. I'd really wanted to see it worked into a movie.... Man, that'd be great.


Due to the fact I’m an idiot, I chose this game thinking it was a horror game. Turns out it was an “hour long melancholy, point-and-click narrative mystery game.” It was such an AMAZING story and such a wonderful experience I decided to make a new playlist just for games like this. I never did anything this long before completely unprepared, but it was so good I wasn’t going to stop. I sincerely hope you all enjoy watching this as much as I did playing it. Do yourself a favor. Make some tea, cuddle up in your warmest blanket, purchase this game and have yourself an enjoyable

time. If the devs ever see this, damn you for pulling on my heart strings and making me feel….also please make more…..

Great narrative and atmosphere. Growing up in a similar location it is also very relatable. Inspiring and emotional.

Also thanks for including a Linux version (you might want to update the launch script as the filename referenced seems to be from an old version). 

This game forreal gave me life is strange vibes.

Gosh, what an absolutely beautiful and brutally sad game. Even though this is just part 1 of 2, all the comments could not prepare me for how much this would pull on my heart strings

will this have a 32bit version coming soon?

I made an account to just say this is a beautiful game, stunning art style and amazing story telling! 10/10

Excellent storytelling! Well done to everyone involved!

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Wonderful experience, perfect art style visually and musically. I enjoyed every scene, every particle and every single moment, specially the one on the title scene, i stayed there for like 20mins after finishing the game. Thank you so much for such an artistic piece and i hope you keep creating awesome games like this, really grateful.

How to claim this?

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 A wonder 

A wonderful thought provoking game.

i loved it. its so beautiful. i cried, i was already expecting a sad ending but i didn't think it would be this sad :,) amazing work 

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