I feel as if I’m on a never ending quest to find the greatest game possible. Maybe that’s why I plan on reviewing every game I own. Who knows, but what I do know is that this is definitely not one of the greatest games I own. It isn’t even great, or good, or okay. But why is that? Well, we’re going to take a look at why that is. Otherwise there wouldn’t be any point to me doing an article on it.
Lets start off with the good stuff though. I make a note of everything as I play a game nowadays, I have two notes for the pros column of this game. Firstly, the only reason I bought this game is because it was cheap and an easy thousand gamerscore. Mind you, I bought it a good year ago or so and have only just gotten round to playing it.
The only other thing I picked up on is that the graphics are fairly good. I’m not a huge fan, but hey, for an indie game it looks pretty good. It attempts to set a mood for the game and it’s marginally successful. But, that’s all for the positives I’m afraid. I might honestly get smacked for writing this, it was released to critical acclaim. I’m just an outlier I suppose, and that’s a good thing.
One thing, well, two things I noticed before I even started the game was how simplistic the menu is. And by simplistic, I mean a bit shit. I do like how it looked, so we can chart that up as another positive. The main problem I had was the lack of an options menu.
Without an options menu there was no real way to change the volume or graphical settings. So without that, I felt a bit nervous as to what the game was going to look and sound like. There’s always the chance the game is too loud/quiet or the graphics need changing. Anyways, that was the main problem I had with the menu.
The other problem I had was that the D-Pad doesn’t actually work on the menu. Honestly it baffles me as to why it doesn’t, but I suppose I just have to live with it. That’s a nitpick at best anyways really, isn’t it?
Again before the game had even begun, I noticed that the opening cutscene was basically useless. They could have removed that cutscene and I would have given an equal amount of shits about the story, which is none. The problem I have with games nowadays is that they just assume I’m invested in the story from the get go and make no effort to keep me or try and make me invested.
You could argue that the game does this well and that the whole mystery aspect is engaging. But is it really? Creating a mystery just so the player sticks it out until the end? It’s done well in some games like the Sherlock Holmes series, but that’s because there’s more than one mystery.
To make a compelling story, you need a decent or strong voice cast. This is something the game very nearly has. Honestly, I was a fan of the computer you meet later on and the explanation for why his voice is like that was great. But it’s A.R.I.D.’s voice that annoyed me the most. I know it’s supposed to be a robot, but for the love of God don’t make them say the exact same thing over and over.
I’m not going to tell you what that is, you can play the game for yourself and find out. But you’ll spend a lot of time introducing yourself. “I am the A.R.I.D.” followed by a lot of text. All the time. Good lord.
Somehow the game takes a Monkey Island approach to things and has you point at objects and then interact with them. So, for example, you look at an object, hold RB down and then move the analogue stick to select an action. This is what I call “unintuitive”. It takes far too long to select an action, and it’s not as if the game uses every button. RB and then the analogue stick and then A? It’s quite a sequence to open a door.
What about sound though? Sound is especially important in a game like this. A suspenseful mystery, by God the sound needs to be the most important thing in the game. It’s not. It’s shit. I’ve never known a game to annoy me so much with something so simple as sound effects. I never really thought it possible, but apparently it is. There is nothing that annoyed me more than the sound.
I mean, there is one thing that annoyed me more. The combat. So, because the game wants to do everything and anything it can to make itself interesting, it throws combat in.
Do you see the flashlight in the image above? Well, that’s also your gun. But you can’t use the flashlight and gun at the same time. I honestly don’t know why this is, but you can switch at the touch of a button so it isn’t too much of a problem. The gun also takes some time to charge and does about as much damage as a wet towel so what’s really the point?
All of this is made so much worse though by unresponsive controls. Somehow they also implemented platforming that doesn’t work? Oh god knows, go find out for yourself. I know it’s my job to review this but you know what I honestly just have no words for how bad the platforming and controls are.
Overall, well, it’s not as bad as it could be. People have found the game enjoyable, and the majority is what counts. I’m just a curmudgeon that hates games or something.
*Legally I am needed to clarify I do not hate games.*