NOTE: This review only covers Act 1 and it will be updated after acts 2 and 3 are added into the game.
I'll be honest, I'm not really into point&click adventure games. There always seems to be something that ruins the experience for me - puzzles that don't make any sense, hidden objects, actions that take forever to perform, bad voice acting, etc. It's a good thing then, that I've had none of those problems with TME, although it's by no means perfect.
TME is set in a retro-futuristic dystopian world
, where it never seems to stops raining, and where apparently both flying taxicabs and vinyl LP records are still totally relevant. It screams technoir
. Visualy, it's a nice mix of a first person view
and a comic book panels
as a way of telling a story. Although the artwork quality is somewhat inconsistent in some scenes (especially towards the end of the first act), it's still very atmospheric and enjoyable
. That's actually the thing this game is very good at - creating an atmosphere. The aesthetic fits the setting perfectly. The soundtrack is also really good
and helps a whole lot in that regard. The combination of electronic music and jazz
reminds me of Gunpoint OST (one of my favorite game soundtracks).
Obviously, I don't want to talk about the plot that much, so I won't spoil it for others. The little I can tell you is that the game starts as you wake up in an abandoned building with no memory of who you are
. You will need some help to figure out what's going on in the world around you…
While it's not the best writing
I've seen in a game, nor is it original, I found myself very invested in the story and I can't wait for the rest
What I really have to mention are the characters. The writing and the character design work so well together, making every character a unique, memorable personality
. Sadly, there's no voice acting
, it's all just hypertext. It could've been so much better, but then again, I'll rather have no voice acting, than a bad one…
Gameplay-wise, there's not much to talk about, really. It's a very casual game
, with only a few easy puzzles
, just enough to keep you engaged. There are of course dialogues, but from what I can tell, there are no bad answers
. That's kind of a weird thing to me - making hypertext, story driven game with totally linear narrative
...Sigh. To be fair though, devs claim that it will get more interesting an non-linear in the next act.
As of now, the game consists of Act 1 and two additional very short stories
(related to two of the characters you meet in the first act). It only took me 2 hours to play through
, and that comes from someone who likes to take his time, read everything properly and enjoy the scenery. You could definitely run through it in an hour or so
That brings up an important question - is it worth the price? At this point, I'm not so sure
. These season-pass-kind-of-deals are always risky. Considering how short the story is, Act 2 release is long overdue, which is not helping the situation. At least devs still seem to be working on it instead of just dropping the ball, so that's good to know.Right now, I would either recommend you to get it in a bundle (like I did) or a sale, or maybe just wait a bit.Conclusion
If you like cyberpunk/technoir genre and visual novels, and you don't mind reading, there's a good chance that you'll enjoy the short TME experience - as long as you'll treat it as a visual novel, not the game. It's not very original, but still atmospheric and intriguing. I'm definitely looking forward to see more of that world and hear more of that great soundtrack. Again, bear in mind that this isn't a complete game, and that the full price may not be adequatte at this moment (as I mentioned in a previous paragraph).
If nothing else, it made me watch Blade Runner
yet once again, so that's a plus I guess…