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 4.8 out of 5 stars
(660 total ratings)
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 303 · Next page · Last page

This looks good... Ill be playing this LIVE tomorrow 1/26 around 630-7PM EST =D.


Thank you very much for making such a beautiful game! It has a great and meaningful story! But I would love to know more about the main characters' life a little bit! Btw, I still love the game so much!


This was such a beautiful story, and it was very heartwarming in way. I really enjoyed it 10/10.

Hey, do you plan to translate your game to other languages, e.g. Polish? If so, I would like to offer you my services completely free of charge. I want to become a professional translator and am currently building my translation portfolio.

If you want to help, please email me: nv7z2@icloud.com


i went into this game thinking it was a game where you would play detective and use your smarts...god am i sad but also happy that i was wrong, because this game is an absolute gem

(;_;) great game but now I'm sad


Any trigger warnings available for this? This game looks great, but I don't know if I'm ready to play it if its about what I think it is. 

Looks stunning and hope to play it one day if not soon <3 Thanks!

I played it a while ago and it did have some suicide and religious trauma but its only spoken about nothing visual


Wow. After finishing the game I'm kind of just stunned at how beautiful and painful that was. The storyline and writing were so immersive and and art was just gorgeous. My emotions were all over the place. 


I came into this with assumptions about what the game was going to be about and related a lot to Sara and her opinions. But when I made it to the end it was such a sobering experience and so bittersweet, makes you rethink your character and everything that happened.

hi my friend i checked your game it was good ,I made a game too Alone Bird 

Hope you check it too GL


thank you for the game ;-; 


I almost cried, dammit, I love this is a very hateful way.


This is such a lovely game! Despite its breathtaking atmosphere & soothingly gorgeous soundtrack, I'm mostly left choked to tears by the writing, especially as the story unravels itself. Everything about this is beautiful!

beautiful :P

very lovely game, kinda sad, but beautiful


i loved this game so much !! the storyline and the colourings were so well thought out and beautiful 

(4 edits) (+4)






Very moving experience... Touches on lots of complicated emotions. Change, grief, life transitions, shifting relationships, growing up, sacrifice, dreams. How well we know ourselves & those close to us. Our preconceived notions vs the truth. The final conversation with Lina was really raw, affecting & impactful. Bravo to the developer for crafting such a thought-provoking & mature narrative about sensitive themes using only snippets of memory & dialogue between characters.


What a beautiful game fr.

(1 edit) (+7)(-1)


You have been warned.

I loved this game. It tells an amazing, emotional, heartbreaking story that genuinely surprised me. I fully expected Sara to ask Lina if she knew that Maria wanted to kill herself and Lina telling her "Yes.", then trying to convince her not to tell everyone and that it's best to just keep it to herself. I expected the ending, in the game sense, to be letting the player choose either to tell everyone or to just keep quiet. But instead it turns out that Sara was wrong, with everything actually making sense without any real leaps in logic.

I didn't like Sara because from the start she was overly cynical and forced a hatred of her hometown everywhere. But as the game went on it made more sense why she was like that. In her eyes Maria's parents, along with the entire town, were to blame for what happened. She thought the town's general religiousness was the reason Maria didn't want to terminate her pregnancy, even though she was repeatedly told by Maria that that was not the case. Sara blamed the town and everyone in it because she believed that the town forced her to have a baby, tying her down there and leaving her miserable. Sara could never be happy living in Härunga and because of that she couldn't believe that Maria, as her best childhood friend, was happy living in Härunga. In her eyes the town was directly responsible for Maria's death.

Her thinking was reasonable, it's easy to see where she was coming from but that doesn't make her any more likeable to me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying me disliking her is a bad thing; after all fictional characters are supposed to emulate real people and no one likes everyone. She isn't shallow as a character, that's what matters.

The story in general is amazing. Very hard hitting when it comes to emotions and it had a genuinely unforeseen twist for me. Everything falls into place. The final shot of Sara completely alone on that hill, the car even more busted up due to age, with the final song on the soundtrack creeping over the whole scene nearly brought me to tears. 

Sorry about the whole story half-retelling, I'm just not used to expressing how I feel about games in this way and I don't know how to quite put it into words. I suppose a generic statement like "It really is an amazing experience, very well put together. Kudos to everyone who worked on this, it really is fantastic." will have to do.



i will never forget this storyline. The game is beautiful, the art is deeply touching. everything about it is good, the music the pixel art, the script... Great work here!


The most beautiful pixel art game I have ever played. Wow, just wow. I saw that the deluxe edition had some neat stuff, but since the game was free I wanted to try it out first. Great Game. Great Art, and great music! The music creates a calm atmosphere, and with the help of the rain, an even calmer atmosphere is created. A short but very worthwhile point-and-click adventure in a sad and gloomy town. I recommend this game to everyone, but if you have 2$ to spare, please buy the deluxe edition. The team really deserves it, and don't get me started on those wallpapers that are included!!!


Naah i gotta test that


Bruh i wanted to play the game online not download this sucks


wa i cry cuz i don't know how to download beautiful game awe  


Sorry for that- 


I don't play a ton of narrative games, but when I do, I like finding ones that stick with me. Beautiful game, thank you 

Full Play No COmmentary 


Justo ahora solo puedo escribir en español porque no me saldrían las palabras en inglés suficientes para decir cuan maravilloso es este juego, me atrevo a decir que más que un juego ha sido una experiencia. Por momentos en verdad comienzas a pensar como la protagonista, y esta tan bien hecha la narrativa qué es muy fácil meterte en la historia, por dios, en varios momentos me hizo llorar mientras leía los diálogos. Definitivamente vale la pena jugarlo, por lo menos una vez.


A very touching story and great atmosphere. It felt very guided though. The player doesn't have to make any choices at all, expect from a few dialogs which don't affect the story.


amazingly done!!!
But if you want to change anything:
-Sometimes the movement is clunky, and in some doorways you can make yourself invisible
-I was so disappointed when I arrived at my grandfathers grave, didn't have flowers, went back to the flower shop and my response to "did you forget anything" was a no.

Still, an amazing game, especially the art direction!


God dang did this game kick me not only in the feels but also my train of thoughts. I related so much to Sara in a way that I blindly agreed with her, and when I realized what was really happening it really felt like a slap to my face and woke me up to reality. God the story's so good, the pacing is nice, the artstyle is also lovely, the ambience/music complements it well, and it felt so polished and clean it's amazing. Wonderful job even though it's haunting me!!


Love it, the artstyle, music, story. Nice work!

çok güzel gözüküyor dostum, başarılar dilerimm :)


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. 

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