Hypnospace Enforcer (found rare second "Hypnospace" game by Jay Tholen, 2014)
Hypnospace Enforcer is a video game released by Jay Tholen on itch.io in 2014 for $1.99, then became free after a new update was made in 2015. The game was, for a while, extremely hard to locate ever since the game was removed from itch.io to make way for Hypnospace Outlaw, a game that is more or less a 90s internet simulator. The game's download links on the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine were completely nonexistent, making it lost for years. The game was finally found on August 15th, 2021 after someone from the LMW team sent a DM to Jay Tholen only to be sent to a MEGA link with the game's zip file.
The game takes place in the year 2114. During that year, people are using pink electronic headbands in their sleep to connect to a world called Hypnospace. It is the future, and everyone is using it. But, there are bad apples who tend to break the rules of Hypnospace, and it is your job as an HSPD Enforcer to traverse across the Hypnospace road to bring these people to justice. The gameplay is rather simple, and is split up into three pint-sized levels and even features subtext and social commentary, and ramming your police cruiser into other cars causes your screen to shake, as well as big ol' explosions, and if you hit into oncoming cars, the cars fly off the road completely.
While Jay Tholen was working on the game Dropsy, he made this game as a side project to prevent burnout. Jay went with a simple, angular art style to contrast with the ornate detailed stuff he was also making. Jay also changed the music to make it all in 4/4. Jay released the game on itch.io in 2014 for $1.99 USD. In 2015, after an update to the game was made, Jay decided to make the game free to download through the itch.io page it was on. The devs then decided to add some OS bits to the game to make it more fresh, then the devs decided that the OS portion of the game was so much more fun than the basic game Jay had made. So, in 2016, the game was removed from itch.io so the devs could start working on Hypnospace Outlaw, and so people would not get confused. The game they eventually made was made into a 90s internet simulator complete with wacky and weird GIFs, wacky websites, and other wacky stuff, as well as a really compelling and engaging storyline. The devs added Jay Tholen's Hypnospace Enforcer to the game as well, but renamed as Outlaw, and would be playable once the player progresses in the storyline.
Hypnospace Enforcer was available to download through itch.io, but it was removed after the devs decided to focus on the OS portion of the game instead, and they thought the idea of two separate Hypnospace games would confuse people. The original page where the game could be found and downloaded at is on archive.org, but it was originally at that point made impossible to download in any sort of sense, because the download pages were not archived in the Wayback Machine. Game footage, however, did and still does exist on YouTube, so it is possible to see how the game looks. And on a Steam Community page, someone had asked where the game had gone to, and one of the devs of Hypnospace Outlaw responded by saying that the game was removed from itch.io not to confuse people, and that Jay would bring it back eventually. On August 15th 2021, the game was officially declared as found after someone messaged Jay about the game and was given a MEGA.nz link to someone who still had the game on their computer. The game is now also available on the Internet Archive for long-term preservation.
- Itch.io page (archive)
- Community page on the game's removal
- MEGA archive of the game
- Page on the Internet Archive