Beyond A Steel Sky: Video Game Overview
It is logical that the Games of the British Studio Revolution Software At one time, in the mid-90s, it was organized almost that the revolution in the quest genre. Everyone, of course, heard about the series Broken Sword, started in 1996, and two years before this handwriting studio and her creative leader Charles Cecil (Charles Cecil) was largely formed in the chic Ciberpan Advent Beneath A Steel Sky. Here’s how she wrote a gently me for her beloved (Platonically, of course, and in general I did not know who it was actually) Masha Arimanov in the December issue of Game magazine.EXE from 2000: “Self-fantastic song about survival, memory, people and robots, cyberspace, steel cities. The second youth of the genre … It is beautiful, rapidly, compact, exhaustively laconic. Before us, Advenchur new generation “.
So, later, after 26 years old (God, how time flies!) Continuation of the same authors, Beyond A Steel Sky, Also could become a revolution, the next youth of the genre. But hardly it will become. Now I will tell why.
What is it at all for the game?
A little prehistory. Developments Beneath A Steel Sky 1994 unfolded in postpocalyptic Australia, divided into six cities-states. Between them, naturally, the empty, which are called hand. We were told by the story of Robert Foster, who was still the only child who survived the plane crash and was raised in disaggregation – there he learned to survive and created from the old chip of the cynical robot-Mizantrophop Joey.
Then, when Robert has already matured, his and Joey (more precisely, the board of Joey) kidnapped and taken away to Union City. The helicopter on the neck of the city crashed, but Foster survived again and the whole game tried to “remember everything”, to figure out who he is so and who is worth it. Fabul is awesome, however, very lively, funny characters and dialogues, especially the creative duet of Robert and Joey, their constant jokes and dive, gave the game a special charm and did not allow to fall into the gloomy cyber I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream. Critics were called rare humorous antiutopia. How it looked around, you can rate on rare trailer.
What we were promised to sequel?
The game was successful and gathered a bunch of awards, and there were comics in it Dave Gibbons (Dave Gibbons), co-author Alan Mura (Alan Moore) for cult “custodians”. Everyone was waiting for the continuation, but it was not all and was not – in many ways because the studio focused on the series Broken Sword.
With the onset of the Kickstarter era, they tried to collect folk money (after all on Broken Sword 5: The Serpent’s Curse collected!) but not happened. but Charles Cesil promised that after the release Broken Sword 5 Development will still begin.
This summer, the continuation still came out – quite unexpectedly and without much noise. And in his authors, all the same Revolution Software, Charles Cesil And Dave Gibbons. However, judging by the video, screenshots and descriptions, we were waiting for something new – “the most ambitious work of the studio,” not the quest, even in a classical understanding, and a modern game with a view of a third party. And almost with an open world, which is constantly changing, where every character has its own motivation and for each of them a hero can affect. Accordingly, they promised a non-linear approach to solving problems.
And what we got?
Naturally, in the end, it still turned out quite a classic quest, and no sandbox. Yes, there is a view from a third party and quite modern graphics, as in large RPG and Action / Adventor, – the picture is stylized under hand drawn, but it’s even for the better. And yes, there are quite large locations, for which people are flashed there and.
But call it a constantly changing world, inhabited characters, on which we somehow affect, – to put it mildly, great exaggeration. If something changes here, then exclusively by scripts and by the will of the screenwriters, and the characters roam and are engaged in their affairs in very limited limits and without much thought. Well, the robot butler, for example, can move around the room and interpret under the legs, or a hacker girl walks there and here on the first location.Where many celebrating people in Union City look like, this hologram looks like.
All motivations and the ability to influence the scripts are spelled out. If we, for example, you need to impress the droid with the quality of your cleaning, then only we will influence – in fact, simply by letting the task in the way and promote further, leaving his motivation and our “influence” beyond the further plot.
Pseudosimulation – Rather, the problem: while the characters are aimlessly shy there, here, we need to manage to catch their mouse clicks and make it talk or apply objects from inventory on them. And the peculiarities of local control and behavior of the camera (everything is “sharpened”, apparently, under the touch control) do not always allow it to do it immediately and conveniently. Many also complain about bugs and departures – I really have nothing to do with the camera, but in any case to technical execution Beyond A Steel Sky have questions.Especially inconvenient to move when Foster goes with a scanner.
And as with non-linearity?
It is classic in its essence quest, nothing that overlooks the third person. If there are alternative options for solving puzzles, then this is an exception. And so everything is according to the classics: where you need, we need to properly apply objects from the inventory, we answer questions, we crush all the replicas to find out where, for example, the character we need, – and only after that the opportunity appears to get into a new location.
That is, if necessary, to solve the problem, so that Joey was at a certain point on Earth, it should be on Earth – otherwise the option “push” simply will not appear. Well, what kind of nonlinear approach?Unwind the child on the carousel and give him to play – this is also needed in the plot.
A hacker tool appeared in the game, which you can hack various systems – and they are in Cyberpenkown Union City, it is clear, a lot. As a rule, everything passes through one or two schemes – we change the conditional algorithms “work outside / work inside”, “open / close”, “enable / disable sprayers” or in the “Fill 100%” command change 100 to 0. And something begins to work, open, the alarm is turned off, we shove the droids for a magnetic press or turn them into a safe platform, on which a frightened girl will come down from the height. That is, there are no particular space for maneuver here.Just change blocks and algorithms are not enough – you need to save changes.
According to the same scheme (well, with variations, of course) all the game we embarrass the artificial wardlands of local raven – gangamov, thus solving different tasks. And I often repeat the same exercises as in the original, – something lie, cut, cool the valves, manipulate the gas supply, stick the lomik between the gear and so on.
However, it is rather nostalgic refills and generally traditional things for the genre – even too traditional and obvious. In general, the complexity of puzzles compared to the original in Beyond A Steel Sky average. Although it is not surprising, considering that we saw the same nipper in the side of the newcomers in the fifth Broken Sword. Hardcore for a large account remained in the past – that is why a very democratic system of prompts is built into the game.
That is, everything is bad?
Not really. First, I so detailed everything painted not to mercilely criticize the game (although pro control and camera is criticism, yes!), but to show that the authors simply slightly in their promises. No it is a sandbox, but a classic quest. But after all, the classic quest, and from the authors Broken Sword, Yes, the continuation of many stories loved by many, is also very good for the current standards.
In addition, in addition to traditional riddles there are others, quite elegant, funny and not so simple. For example, when we travel by cyberspace. Or when we use the aforementioned hacker tool. So, one day, with his help, you need to convince the visitor to the museum in the fact that the “hand of Joey” gives him signs. And for this you have to hack and “Hand”, and the surrounding exhibits, and cruising around the droid, transmitting different behavioral algorithms along the chain – “calmly”, “cute”, “aggressively”, “seductive”.Artificial sausages in this hand will not like.
There are interesting largests when, for example, in order to deal with the droid preventing us, you need not only to organize sabotage, but also to play with him in a hide and seek, almost like in Metal Gear Solid.
Or here – during one of the dialogues, you can focus on visual tips of other characters.
How in a game with a plot?
Yes, yes, I have not yet said about the fact that in fact the main thing in the quest Charles Cecil with comrades – about the plot, characters, dialogues and humor. And so with it just in Beyond A Steel Sky Everything is expected good. At the same time, for diving in history, it is not necessary to know the original – the scripts are quite competently told and remind that we missed or forgotten.For fans, a mass of nostalgic references was prepared.
The new plot at first almost repeats the original – from gone, where Robert Foster lives, the child is kidnapped again. This time is not him, Robert, but the son of a local resident, but this incident again leads our hero in Union City.
The situation in the city is no longer so gloomy, people seem to be quite happily, but it’s all the equilopia with all the resulting – control, total surveillance and mass drinking of special drinks of joy with a requirement always smile attached. This soda is sold at every turn.
Plus, everyone here is simply obsessed with the earning of virtual points, which are credited to the imported chip. It helps to advance through life – such a relevant reference to the current attempts to introduce similar estimation technologies. The phoster in the midst of all it is necessary to find out who and why kids children and help them.
What about humor?
History B Beyond A Steel Sky, As in the original, mixes drama and comedy. In some sad situations, it seems even exemplary situations, but in general, with humor here again everything is in order. Yes, you can say that Foster has become more silent, but in fact, the charisma is still grabs.
To fulfill the tasks, Foster must re-implement another person. And of course, to joy to all of us to interact with an old robotic friend, which there will still have grumbling and rushing to move from one mechanical shell to another. And it opens the scope for numerous jokes and sore.
Already in the first five minutes after a new meeting, Joey, placed in the body of an old robot cleaner, outraged by his status of the vacuum cleaner and asks phoster to turn away when he has to insert his plug into a hole of another old droid (to intercept control, naturally). And then he asks never to remember this ..Let us turn away too and never remember what.
But without this couple here there are plenty of bright characters. What it costs, for example, a droid poet of Tarquinia, who constantly composes poems, reflects on metaphors and even to a question, is there any ideas, how to save the girl who is stuck at the height, say again about the poems.
Almost every character is well registered here, and many are ready to joke. For example, one of the interlocutors in response to the replica of Joey that he was suiced to the phostera, it takes aptly: “And it tells me the vacuum cleaner”.The owner of Tarquinia, by the way, also a person with humor.
Yes, this is not the best sample of the British humor, and in general some believe that in Beyond A Steel Sky Humor has become lower than. But it’s still better than many attempts by modern rigging to joke.
That in the end?
Yes, Beyond A Steel Sky did not become what could be. That is, a new word in the genre – for this you need more freedom, scale and real influence on the game world. Revolution U Revolution Software did not work out – much closer to her Frogwares with his adventures about Sherlock Holmes. But the legendary British came out just a good quest, which is quite fresh and is ideal for familiarizing with the genre as a whole and with his classics in particular. That’s what the price of the game was lower ..
Pros: In general, the fascinating plot that continues the history of the 1994 classics;Coloric characters;Many funny situations and company humor Charles Cecil;There are really interesting puzzles;The game looks pretty and modern;good Russian localization;Quality work with music and voice acting.
Minuses: The authors promised more than they could do;Riddles are repeated;not very comfortable camera and management;There are problems with technical execution.