I got this game in a bundle, and it has easily been one of my best bundle grabs. Keep in mind that this is a three-part game, and - at the date this review has been made - the next installment is projected at ~12 months. Also be aware of the shortness of the game, it is beatable in one sitting - I completed my playthrough in less than 2.5 hours, proceeding at a leisurely pace. That being said, if you are interested in a well-written, well-executed story revolving around an AI protagonist tasked with protecting its suit pilot, this game is more than worth the playthrough.
If you like atmospheric puzzle games, space themes, and a good storyline, then you should really enjoy this game.
The aethetics are great - the details add nicely to the dark atmosphere. The presentation of the AI interface (when you press ESC to go to the menus) is really cool. The startup screen mimics the faceplate of the pilot, and the cracks are a foreshadow for the story (and you also have a cracked screen effect whenever you are low on health/shields). The sounds and music are both very good and do a great job of creating a gripping vibe.
The controls are very simple, and the tutorials are quick and helpful whenever a new mechanic is introduced. The learning curve is minimal to moderate, depending on your experience with puzzlers/point-and-clickers. Most of the puzzles are intuitive, and can also be solved with a bit of trial and error. There is also a combat element, and this part is fairly straightforward and not very challenging.
For the ahievement hunters, you MUST do a second playthrough to get 100% completion (and if you do everything correctly the first time around, this will be for a single achievement). I am currently contemplating whether or not I should do a speedrun for that 100% game completion.
The gameplay thus far has been pretty good - I really enjoyed experiencing your suit "upgrading" (or "unlocking," to be more precise) new abilities as you progress through the story. Most of these unlocks occur due to threat to the pilot's safety (ex: you unlock stealth capabilities when a sentry gun locks sights on you), and the small ways these can influence gameplay is great (ex: you later unlock semi-automatic fire - which decreases your damage, encouraging you to use more cover/stealth to protect yourself from incoming fire). You will be moving back and forth between areas to solve many of the puzzles. The map is not too large, and enemies do not respawn.
I really enjoyed the dialogue and dialogue options - the AI protagonist reminded me a lot of GLaDOS from the Portal series. A.R.I.D's (the AI) development over such a small amount of gametime was refreshing to see, and I look forward to seeing how the next installments play out.
Admittedly, the ending reveal of The Fall was much more obvious/predictable (at least to me) then, say, The Swapper. This does not, however, make the game any less valuable or fun to play.
If you are interested in atmospheric puzzlers with a good storyline, definitely check this game out. For it's current price ($9.99), I would suggest waiting for a sale, considering the very short gametime (unless of course, you are really dying to play this game).
DJSF @DJSF's Rogue Reviews