Lacuna

I saw this on Keymailer immediately got Blade Runner vibes, so I had to request it.
You can see my first playthrough here.

Initially I was quite taken with this game, nice basic introduction, lay of the land and characters. Plot of why you are on that plant and remote learning (oh Covid) it was nice, especially as it was then all rudely interrupted for a holy fuck run for your life situation when it literally all came tumbling down.

You then fast forward to forty years later and the events of the holy fuck moments and some of the characters you met just before they happened are referenced but you are a new character now with a mission… you detect things, as a detective.
This is where I was getting the Blade Runner vibes from but only in this instance it is
slow
as
fuck.

The main story is interesting though, I like the social friction and the undertones of possible civil fallout/war if things aren’t handled right and the general nods to xenophobia with other peoples religious customs and beliefs. Its sadly very relevant to life now, but well executed within the plot of the game.

Screenshot

I really love the graphics style too, there’s plenty of detail within the minimalistic frame and the atmospherics work really for just walking around and waiting for the train etc. I also found it really amusing when you got locked out of your own apartment and had to actually use the pin to enter.

I found the detective mode okay but very prescriptive, on reading some more of the press kit I found out that depending on your choices, there are multiple endings depending on decisions you make BUT because its so hand holding about finishing every clue the answers are obvious, so I wonder how much that might evolve with more playing. In the first crime scene I had figured out where the bullet came before the ‘evidence’ pointed to it – but I couldn’t submit my report or skip ahead until I had done all the things. Little bit frustrating and kind of reminded me a bit of detective mode in the Batman Arkham series.

Screenshot

Had some issues with the controls, and despite the fact it initially said it worked with the PS4 controller, it was much happier with the Xbox One controller but required a restart to play nice and accessing the phone didn’t seem to happen with the button you were told in game.

Other features that were interesting was the ability to download news articles from set points in the world and get a greater background for world events and political leanings, that was a really nice attention to detail. The smoking mechanic is just a bit meh, there is no incentive to smoke or not smoke seeing as cancer has basically been eradicated.

Shiney Rating
2.5 out of 5
Its interesting, and there is lots I like about it but it is really really slow. Its also very linear, you can’t make decisions unless you have every single piece of evidence, even if you already worked it out – which makes it frustrating. Its not a bad game but I won’t be going back to it unless I run out of other games to play.

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