Beneath a Steel Sky

This game was a nice, entertaining, casual gaming experience. The puzzles were really not too hard but at the same time I never felt like I was just reading a story. The graphics and backgrounds were really pleasant to look at. Very simple animation of course but they really took the 256 color palette to the limit.

The story was enticing. I could not get the game to play the intro animation for me so I was a bit confused at first. Apparently you crash your helicopter and end up at the top of a scaffolding inside a building. That never did make sense to me but I’m sure it’s covered in the intro.

The “sidekick” trope was exploited to the fullest with your little friend Joey who follows you around in various guises throughout the game. His presence was never gratuitous and a number of puzzles involved some special ability that he had.

The game started off giving me the impression that it was going to be a Blade Runner type knock-off. Especially with the trench-coat and all. Actually it also reminded me a lot of Brazil (the movie). I was concerned I’d be sneaking around afraid of the cops the whole game. Luckily that’s not the way it works out and you meet all kinds of amusing characters who generally don’t give a shit that you are the fugitive that the police are looking for. It made for a nice surprise.

What Worked

The game was just very entertaining. The dialogue was funny and the characters were well developed.

What Didn’t Work

I got bogged down a few times. The cyberspace world had one time-sensitive puzzle which I feel is always a bad idea in an adventure game. Barring that one puzzle and the fingerprint puzzle I was able to complete the game without hints.


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