Close To The Sun: Video Game Overview
Alternative Steampunk Universe, 1897. Polushemusady genius Nikola Tesla (Nikola Tesla) is trying to build a utopian future where there is no wars, and electricity is free for every1. To do this, he creates a huge ship-Helios city and invites him the best scientists from all over the world. Sails here at the invitation of the sister and the main character, and in the end it detects only perfectly decorated, but abandoned halls, the mountains of the corpses, the inscription “Quarantine”, bred by blood, and wild local inhabitants (okay, he is one!) who periodically rush to her with a knife. Agree, trailers and announcements CLOSE TO THE SUN literally shook: “Look, we do Bioshock, in which delight rises from the seabed to the surface “. Waiting from the game many were relevant. And the overestimated expectations, as you know, is always bad.
Therefore (but not only) the game has already managed to grab in full of critics. I, however, did not wait for nothing, understanding what they were doing CLOSE TO THE SUN not Ken Levin (Ken Levine) with comrades, and little-known indie developers. Therefore, I took it a little different. Now I will tell why and again I will try to act as a defender of humiliated and offended.
Meet for dressing
STORM IN A TEACUP – Studio is really modest: she has only a couple of games, whose names you will not tell you about. But her leader Carlo Bianchi (Carlo Ivo Alimo Bianch9) managed to work in Ubisoft And Io Interactive, Also in his portfolio – Crysis 3 And Batman: Arkham Origins. And everywhere he was responsible for visualization, for lighting, for the cat scene and was generally one of the leading CG artists.
So it is not surprising that just with the image in CLOSE TO THE SUN Everything is fine. When we get to “Helios” and see all these beautiful scenery, rooms, compartments and halls, decorated in the favorite Many Art Deco-style raid with a pimp and nuara, where the smallest details are worked up to the chrome-plated toilet covers, – only one pulsates in the headthought: yes it really Bioshock? And what is the local large theater here – the work of CG art! For a long time it is useless – you yourself can see everything in the game or in trailers.
Someone screams about problems with textures? Well, first, it is already purely technical things, and secondly, I put in the graphics settings a very high quality texture and did not experience any problems.
We know reading
In such decoraticles, not a high-budget immersive SIM, but a laconic, compressed to 3-5 hours of passage, in which there is both its advantages and obvious cons. The most important problem is that here, of course, a lot of predictable – the authors are difficult to surprise us. Look at the run on the pursuer – really spectacular reception.
Already from the first references to scientific experiments Tesla It becomes clear that they will not end with anything good, and all these hints and direct statements about flirting with a space-time continuum immediately cause many films and games. Where the like has already met? Well, of course, in BIOSHOCK INFINITE.
Most plot moves are guessing in advance, and you understand that a person who communicates the whole game with the heroine by the walkie-talkie is not as simple as it seems;What exactly now with her sister will happen exactly what should happen;and so on and so forth.
Do not be afraid
At some point, the “walking simulator” is replaced by Horror, more precisely, attempts to scare us – most often unsuccessful. Here is the same problem: the authors use too familiar techniques. Bump every five meters a bunch of corpses and nimble blood frightening inscriptions? No, thanks. Well, though mannequins, silently growing behind his back, did not obstruct on every step. You anticipate when and where the authors will be allowed the consample, where in the face of the heroine will surely arise that the most psychopath with a knife or murmur from another dimension and again will take off for her.
The problem of these very liquets with monsters in CLOSE TO THE SUN not only and not so much that they are toughly painted by scripts. It is stupid to accuse the authors of the svascript story horror with a claim to cinematicism in the fact that they regularly issue sacripped scenes. On the contrary, it made it possible to realize interesting techniques during such versions – such as written by the blood of false pointers or the opportunities to look back and see the enemy running. The problem is that this technique is used too often.Congress of scientists ended the tragedy.
And yet we will see
However, I did not say in vain “in most cases” and “most often”. In fact, closer to the final a couple of times the game managed to scare me and surprise. And most importantly, with all the banality and the expectedness of many plot techniques, the main intrigue – as it was on “Helios” the time was distorted as the heroine and her sister were lost in space-time lines – personally for me was relevant to the final titles. And even after I immediately did not understand the answer. Maybe stupid, I admit. But the network immediately appeared different interpretations of the final. And this speaks of two things: first, I’m not alone;Secondly, the story still clings something if people want to interoperate the ending.
I will note and gorgeous voicing, and well-prescribed characters with their characters, and sometimes the appropriate humor (the same interlocutor by the walkie-talkie was very convincingly seemed to have such a funny crazy). Yes, and setting is not bad: collecting numerous notes, newspaper clippings, drawings or, for example, studying exhibits at the local museum of scientific achievements Tesla, You can learn a lot of interesting, places are funny and important for immersion in the history of information.
And if applied to CLOSE TO THE SUN Use first of all the word “history” (and “atmosphere”, of course, too!) then there are several strange claims for the simplicity of local puzzles. Yes, they are solved easily, logical and quickly, and tips to codes, as a rule, are at a distance of an elongated hand. On the other hand, they do not distract from narrative.
And in such cases, when the tasks are not sucked from the finger, they do not force us to be nervous, knocking the rhythm of the narration (and in CLOSE TO THE SUN he is intentionally high), and thus do not interfere with the story-oriented game to keep the public within the framework of the specified pace, critics usually write that it is good. We seem to be a “walking simulator” (albeit with the elements of other genres), and not The Witness or Myst. In this theater, no one will play.
In addition, sals with a runway between the switches and electric rays or hide from the shots of a huge tower quite succeeded. But in any case, definitely, puzzles are clearly not the best part CLOSE TO THE SUN. Perhaps it would be better to abandon them at all, concentrating efforts on better working script.
Animation as a reason for cremation?
What other claims are spoken up? To a small duration? But if we call CLOSE TO THE SUN “Walking simulator”, then 4.5 hours that I personally spent on the passage – it is for the games of such a genre even a bit. I repeat is an adventure, first of all, designed for a dynamically developing and emotional history. From this point of view, in some places, on the contrary, it seemed that the script was tightened: where the junction was already waiting, it turns out that there are two more chapters ahead.
Uncomfortable preservation? Here they are automatic and recorded almost it is not commemorated, that, on the contrary, it is extremely convenient – but there is no special need for manual “savages”. Animation? Yes, she is not the best here in the world, which, you see, forgiven for a small indie studio (and certainly not a reason to mix the game with garbage). And most importantly – especially to be afraid or enjoy this animation just nowhere. Lion’s share of time we see only ripped corpses. And long scenes with dialogues showing talking heads are not at all.
At such moments here is not so scary – rather, it is interesting than everything will end.
CLOSE TO THE SUN, obviously and loudly stating itself, turned out to be a storyline indie gorror, the authors of which did not do everything as part of their capabilities, but quite a lot. Yes, of course, there are problems, the potential of the concept is uncovered not to the end, and the developers are far from being able to surprise us something or truly scare. But personally, I even in such a form, this game managed to cause interest, and emotions – not always negative. So I would like to not throw another tomato in developers, but, on the contrary, support them. Because the independent developers do not think so: why even try to do something in such a style if they still compare with large aaaa hits and smear around the wall? No, do, dare, learn from your mistakes and improve. This in any case is better than another indie horror about the study of an old mansion or about hide and seek in the dark forest.
Pros: chic location design; an derived atmosphere; well-prescribed characters; In history there is its own intrigue and raisin; qualitative sounding of characters; Pleasant graphics.
Minuses: The script could be more interesting and longer; As Harrror game is most often untenable; Some would like more difficult mysteries; Not the best animation; In Russian localization a lot of errors.