CONTRAST is a puzzle/platform game where you can move between a fantastic 3D world and a mysterious shadowy universe in 2D in the blink of an eye. Delve into a dreamlike and surreal 1920s world, inspired by the performance art world of vaudeville and film noir, and cradled by a smooth and sultry jazz ambiance.
User reviews:
Overall:
Very Positive (2,887 reviews) - 90% of the 2,887 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 15, 2013

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Packages that include this game

Buy Focus Selection Pack (December 2015)

Includes 23 items: Another World – 20th Anniversary Edition, Blood Bowl: Chaos Edition, Bound By Flame, Cities XXL, Contrast, Etherium, Faery - Legends of Avalon, Farming Simulator 2013 - Classics, Farming Simulator 2013 - Official Expansion (Titanium), Farming Simulator 2013 Titanium Edition, Final Exam, Game of Thrones, Mars: War Logs, Of Orcs And Men, Pix the Cat, Pro Cycling Manager 2015, R.A.W. Realms of Ancient War, Runaway, A Road Adventure, Runaway, The Dream of The Turtle, Runaway: A Twist of Fate, Space Run, Styx: Master of Shadows, Yesterday

 

Reviews

“The interaction is stellar”
IGN

“It’s as if Limbo and Bioshock Infinite had a baby while watching Pan’s Labyrinth”
VENTUREBEAT

About This Game

CONTRAST is a puzzle/platform game where you can move between a fantastic 3D world and a mysterious shadowy universe in 2D in the blink of an eye. Delve into a dreamlike and surreal 1920s world, inspired by the performance art world of vaudeville and film noir, and cradled by a smooth and sultry jazz ambiance.

In this universe, where the boundaries between showmanship, magic, intrigue and deception are blurred, you play Dawn, the imaginary friend of a young girl named Didi. You have the power to slip from the 3D dreamscape into the parallel 2D shadow world bound to it. Cast light on a shadowy story by manipulating light sources in the 3D world to distort, enlarge or stretch the 2D shadow world. Manipulating and shifting between light and shadow will be the key elements that you will need to use to solve our world of shadow-based puzzles and help progress Didi's story!

Key Features
  • Shift between the physical 3D world and the 2D shadow world, at any lit wall surface
  • Create unique shadow landscapes by manipulating light sources and real world objects, and use this ability to solve mind-bending puzzles
  • Experience a new story and world, exploring adult themes through a child’s eyes
  • Immerse yourself in a lush vaudevillian world of cabaret singers, circus performers, and magic

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: WINDOWS XP SP2/WINDOWS VISTA SP1/WINDOWS 7/WINDOWS 8
    • Processor: AMD/INTEL DUAL-CORE 2.3 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512MB VRAM, COMPATIBLE DIRECTX 9.0C AND SHADER MODEL 3.0, AMD RADEON X2600 XT/NVIDIA GEFORCE 7900 GTX
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Storage: 4 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DIRECTX 9 COMPATIBLE
    • Additional Notes: The Original Soundtrack and the Programme (Artwork, Dev. Diary) will be placed in your CONTRAST folder in the Steam Directory: ...\Steam\SteamApps\common\Contrast\CONTRAST_Programme-OST
Helpful customer reviews
20 of 20 people (100%) found this review helpful
11.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 7, 2015
Contrast is a very beautiful game, it has a unique and interesting art style, the music is top notch, and the game play is pretty unique with using light and shadow to travel. The story is pretty compelling as well, it has quite a few heavy subjects done in a way that seems genuine and not just thrown in for shock value... The game has a few somewhat open areas to play through in each Act, the game is comprised of 3 acts, each act will probably take about an hour or so. The puzzles are fairly simplistic, although that isn't really a bad thing.

The story centers around a little girl known as Didi, she has an imaginary friend named Dawn, often being left alone at night so her mother can preform Didi enlist the help of her friend Dawn to sneak around in a landscape which is set in 1920. Going along with Didi, the player (Dawn) will be introduced to numerous interesting characters shown only via their shadows.

The length of the game is rather short, I have 11 hours clocked in but over 8 of those hours were from idling cards while I slept. I played the game completely and got all the achievements in a little under 3 hours.

I'd recommend this game for the gameplay, interesting art style and compelling story. I personally found it well worth the price I paid, but if you are a stickler for games having a lot of meat and potatoes, I'd think you may be better off skipping out on this one. Fans of good games will enjoy this in spite of it's short length..
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 26
Contrast is one of those rare games that you come by and despite it's flaws you're left with just wanting more.

What is it? Apart from the one feature that makes this game unique (Shadow-Shifting), it's your basic 3D platforming game. The best way I can describe it would be for you to take the gameplay mechanics of Alice: Madness Returns and mix it with the atmosphere from that of the movie Barlesque. That's actually the perfect example of what we have here.

Sure, the game has some collision detection issues, sure it's platforming isn't as nearly as polished as other platforming games, sure I finished it in three and a half hours BUT the charm and storytelling choices the developer made for this game make me wish for a sequel in the near future.

There's some things this game does extremely well, the storyline for one, is fairly captivating. Contrast's story revolves not on the main character but actually a young girl who you accompany throughout the game. The emotion of the story takes hold of you from the very beginning, leaving for no disconnection for the 3 and a half hour journey.

The art style is very nice. It's almost a cel-shading effect, but the game lacks visual settings and options for use if anti-aliasing, fov, and other things that could have really enhanced the visual experience quite a bit. Still, not at all a bad looking game. Despite it lacking anything technically deep, there were times where I looked at a setting and said Wow... this is simple but just so beautiful in that simple yet effective kind of way.

The controls are okay. The camera can be clunky. After awhile, you learn the hard way that even though only some walls are fun to shift into to. Some others make you scratch your head and think "What was the point of this? Why am I able to shift on an object that causes me to spaz out" things of that nature. These small detection errors can cause puzzles to be frustrating at times but still, when it's done right, it works ab5d it's fun.

If you want to enjoy a great but short game that you can finish in one sitting, if you loved American McGee's Alice games, or Steampunk things then you owe it to yourself to check this one out.

Also, this game is sexy.

Review based on current build, bought on sale for a lower price.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 25, 2015
Ended up getting this because the mechanics looked interesting and it turned out to be a great (and underrated) little gem. Your character is a woman with the ability to shift between the tangible world and the shadows. She watches over a little girl and her family while navigating a strange city in a parallel universe, where the inhabitants are shadows and your character is invisible to all but the little girl.

The game is a puzzle-platformer and your character must use the shadows cast by real objects (and people) to achieve her goals. This often involves moving light sources in such a way as to line up shadows just right to reach a ledge or time a jump over the shadows of moving people. The mechanics aren't perfect, but for the most part, the flow is smooth and fun.

The graphics are detailed and unique, with a moody, jazzy soundtrack and a very endearing storyline. Definitely recommend this.
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 6
Contrast is a game with a solid idea and little substance to back it up.

The core shadow shifting mechanic is clever and well designed. Manipulating light sources to move shadows around is intuitive and adds some complexity to the puzzles. Transitioning in and out of shadow is fluid and also fits well with the rest of the platforming. That being said, the clunky physics will frequently and unexpectedly push you out of shadows, often times due to a poorly designed obstacle location.

The highlight of the game is clearly its fantastic art design. The surreal Parisian-noire tone is presented well, covering everything from the lighting to the architecture. Once you've accustomed yourself to the art design however, there isn't much more to the game. The story is charming but rather predictable, the environments are small and sparse, and the puzzles are short and straightforward (complicated only by the aforementioned shadow physics). Most irritating for me were the constant fade-to-black mini-cutscenes, which take away control from the player and ruin the game's pacing.

The pop culture geek in me got a kick from the various movie easter eggs (Casablanca! Back to the Future! Fight Club!), but otherwise I was left disappointed. The premise shows a lot of promise but I wish the developers had done more with it.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 13
I only purchased this game because the little girl was named Didi and what I got in return was so much more. Beautiful music, stunning views and a gorgeous Player Character. The noir atmosphere made me want to listen to Jazz music, drink whisky and smoke a cigar or two. There were some moments in the game where the shadow mechanism made me salty as ♥♥♥♥ to the point where I wanted to swallow a grenade, but eventually I got passed it. The collectibles were fun and the witty achievements were cute, but the development of the overall story as whole won it over for me. I just wish it was longer and a little more in depth with the ending.
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