Throughout the ages, the readers and listeners of the Sleeping Beauty tale have wondered and fantasized about what goes on in a palace where every one is asleep. How does it feel to be surrounded by so many sleeping people? Would it be peaceful? Or a little bit scary?
“8” allows you to explore the vast luxurious palace frozen in time during the preparations of a glorious feast. Foreign guests had arrived and were spending their leisure time on the palace grounds. The kitchen was buzzing with activity. The Throne Room is being prepared for a glorious ball. And then, with one prick, everything became quiet. And remained quiet for years, decades, centuries...

The game starts innocently enough in a present day park. It's a Sunday afternoon in Summer. Birds are singing. There's a little breeze. In the distance we can hear de bustling city. But here all is calm. A man takes a walk with his son. Three women share the latest gossip. A lonely biker passes by. And a young girl is playing with her mother.

A threatening and dark place infused with magic. Many have tried to penetrate it. Many have failed. Their remains are scattered throughout the forest.
Next to the relatively friendly looking brambles, a new species of plant has started to grow. Thick twisted branches that seem to be aggressively growing. We can see them sway. They bloom with voluptuous flowers when we are near. Reaching for us as we pass by.

The Royal Garden has seen better times. The formal layout is hard to recognize anymore. The hedges have dried up and many plants have whithered. Others have started to grow out of bounds. The fountains are dry. The statues covered with dirt. Next to what appears to be a lighthouse, in the back of the Garden, there is a deep black pit, still smelling of burnt wood. There appear to be no doors in the Light house. You can hear the ocean. One of the trees is shaking violently.
And then there's these vile branches that have destroyed garden walls and are invading everything. They seem to be growing still.

It's quiet in here. Too quiet. On top of a platform, a human form is lying. Seemingly dead. Is that the princess?
This is the central place in the game. Where the Fairies have installed their spell maintaining device which was subsequently destroyed by the princes. In this magical place, the Girl will receive the supernatural powers that will help you on your quests.
Again these wicked branches everywhere. They have covered all windows. It's dark. You hear snoring. It's not the princess. It's coming from the door...

A wide open space. Filled with sleeping people, paralyzed in whatever activity they were engaged in at the time. It's hot here. And dry. Sand has blown in and covered things partially. The entrance hall still looks impressive though. And that black monolyth must be a religious building. It seems that a ceremony was going on before the people fell asleep. Galleries everywhere, surrounding the courtyard. Offering welcome shade.
There's a big fountain in the middle. Not working anymore of course. And high towers on all corners. I wonder what is in them.

With it's 250 rooms, the palace is a huge area to explore. Almost all rooms are accessible from the beginning of the game. Though it may not always be easy to enter them. The Wicked Branches have wreaked havoc in here as well. Some rooms look like a dead jungle. Others, on the other hand, have retained the soothing calm they used to offer to the inhabitants. Not that they need it much now. Everyone is asleep. Asleep in bedrooms and kitchens, in courtyards and bath houses, the chapel and the throne room, the stores and the workshops, in the dark basements and the high tower rooms. Everywhere, like petals shed by a cherry tree, the bodies of the sleepers lie.
Accept for a few odd looking ones. The princes. They have left traces of their imprisoned life throughout the palace. You can almost follow their trails. They're all dead now.
I feel a presence though. No, it's not those wretched branches. It's something else. Is there somebody else here?...