Whispers of “another adventure game”?
How many adventure games have you seen being released the last couple of years? A dozen a week? At least? How many of them are sci-fi or cyberpunk in one way or another? Half a dozen?
Well, look no further, as Raw Fury comes with their own, newest title, newest adventure game, “Whispers of a Machine.” The company aims to penetrate the already overly-saturated market of sci-fi adventure games with a title that breaks boundaries no other game of the genre dared to even cross before it.
Take control of Vera, an augmented police detective who visits a small peaceful town that recently has been seeing various strange homicides. Your goal as a player is to guide Vera as she tries to solve the mystery behind the murders. Sounds very simple, but the story is actually very interesting and intricate in its own special way. The fact that we get to solve the mystery in the way that we choose is best is actually what makes this “yet another adventure game” title stand out from the rest.
Yes, we may have seen a heck ton of sci-fi adventure games and yes, the whole cyberpunk theme may be hyped all over the place right now, but as a lover of both of those things, I can tell you firsthand that Whispers of a Machine actually brings something new to the table. It brings something exciting and something worth spending your time to explore. At first I was a bit skeptical about going into yet another point’n’click game since as much as I may love them, I am growing tired of having to meet the same sort of characters over and over, again and again, adventure game to adventure game.
But no, this one is different. Here’s why.
Vera comes with a few augments when we start the game that we are told by the game how to use in order to make our investigation easier. On top of all the typical adventure genre gameplay, we have a layer of options and story-driven choices to make. Depending on how much and where we use our augment abilities, characters respond differently around Vera and so the story changes. It is quite interesting to go back and read about how others did it differently and what kind of repercussions that had on their investigation. What they found and what they did not find.
Augmented humans is a very discussed topic regarding how accepted people like that could be from society. This is just like playing Detroid: Become Human where every choice we make and every little detail around us, reminds us of the ethical background that all of this technological advantage comes with. You can’t help but sit down and think about what all of this means and how humanity fits into all of this.
The graphics of the game are pixel-art, which is always an awesome choice for an adventure game, but I have to say I somewhat expected them to be a bit better. The game looked a bit rough around the edges and although that sort of look sometimes works for games of this genre (e.g. Primordia), I feel like Whispers of a Machine could have done better on that part. The voice acting however is very spot on and actually helped keep the game alive when everything else is colored with the stereotypical gritty cyberpunk palette (I mean, is the future really only gray walls and stuff…come on people, we’ve got more imagination than that, surely). Adventure games usually end up being a silent journey for the player but the ones that bother to add at least decent voice-acting end up standing out from the crowd due to the impressive character the title attains from the sound.
Seeing how Wadjet Eye games provided the voice-overs for the game (as well as the same engine), it is no wonder this was going to end up being one heck of an adventure game. If you are unfamiliar with Wadjet Eye Games, you should definitely check out some of their games too. We have actually reviewed quite a few ourselves, here on Hyper Light Up.
If Kathy Rain was a game that you enjoyed, then you will be happy to know that the studio has gone far and beyond what Kathy Rain was and actually brought a treat for all adventure gamers. Whispers of a Machine is a “Choose your own adventure” and an adventure game in one. So make sure you tag along with Vera on that journey of solving a murder in a not-so-distant future and check out the implications of using technology in investigations for yourself.
You can find Whispers of a Machine on Steam.
+ Good story with interesting to deduct plot points.
+ Augments give you another way to solve the mystery in a way that it affects the story in an actually cool way
+ Good voice-acting with intriguing characters
+ Thought-provoking choices through a compelling murder mystery storyline
– Pixel-art is good, but feels like it could have a more unique look to it
~Konstantinos “Kelfecil” Christakis