Return NULL, a Point & Click Adventure, is set in a distant dystopian society under an oppressive force where you play the role of Jack Drebin; husband and soon to be father whose life is on the verge of chaos. Episode 1 sets up key characters and a plot that escalates into an intense finale.
User reviews:
Overall:
Mixed (68 reviews) - 67% of the 68 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Apr 2, 2015

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About This Game


In a distant dystopian society under a heavy and oppressive militaristic force you find yourself in the shoes of Jack Drebin. Long time Local Security Force member. Husband. Soon to be father. You go about your business day-in and day-out working hard to keep the city streets safe. Then as fate would have it, your day to day life is thrown into chaos during a routine search and seizure on a suspected terrorist...

Return NULL: Episode 1 is the first in a 3 part Point-and-Click Adventure series. Done in an indie European comic art style, players will examine their environments for clues, carry on dynamic conversations, collect items and solve logical environmental puzzles to advance through the twisting narrative. When the action gets hot, Return NULL incorporates a real-time duck and cover shoot out mechanic that elevates the tension and puts the player in immediate danger.

FEATURES
  • 10 unique characters, each with different emotional dialogue portraits
  • 14 interactive hand drawn locations
  • Unique indie European comic art style
  • 7 original composed music tracks that set the mood and tone of each scene
  • Innovative, Real-Time Gunplay mechanic

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP or later
    • Processor: 1 GHz
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: Direct X 9 Compatible
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: 10.6.6 or later
    • Processor: 2.5GHz processor
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Open GL 3.0 compatible
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 and Newer
    • Processor: 1.4GHz processor
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Storage: 250 MB available space
Customer reviews
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Overall:
Mixed (68 reviews)
Recently Posted
Vic=HKC=
( 3.7 hrs on record )
Posted: May 11
Jack is a member of the local force, in a world where downtown is equal to a prison, at least, for the upper citizens, not aware of the reality. However, one day, his pregnant wife got killed in an explosion and he never recovered from that. Now ousted from the force, he's contacted by the same terrorists that need his help. Is what Jack always believed in really the truth?

Return NULL is an episodic adventure game in a dystopian world, where those living downtown are oppressed by the authorities, without really a perspective to survive and with the truth being hidden to the upper citizens (though they can be thrown down to what is described as a prison/jail). The story is interesting as we meet Jack before the death of his wife and after he's ousted from the forces because of the depression that followed. While Jack wants revenge, he's convinced that maybe the truth isn't the truth and is now ready to take down the society he once swore to protect. Everything is centered around plans of a bomb, even in the second episode.

However, I will only concentrate on the first episode as the second is available as a DLC and I will not spoil it. So, this introduction is interesting as you're leading a depressed yet determined Jack in the streets of this upper part of the city, not realizing of what is really happening down there (Jack himself isn't really sure of what to find, even if he knows the truth about it) or being afraid of the local forces, as people are taken and never seen to return.

The gameplay is a point-&-click game: you speak with people, you interact with them, you find items, you solve puzzles. There is nothing extraordinary added to Return NULL on that point and it's working perfectly. However, as it's a game with choices to make, you can expect some impact on the story (nothing really major, apart on the dialogues). It's just the way you will behave with people and how you will blame yourself on your wife's death. Besides, you can be met with a gameover as you have some action in the game.

What I liked in that game is also the graphics. I loved how the characters are depicted in a comic style. However, there is no real animation in the game. You're just in a static background. Jack isn't moving around, you're just pointing on where to go or where to interact and it's done like that, like in a casual adventure/hidden object games.

I also liked the soundtrack. However, there are no voice acting. You just read the dialogues as in a comic book.

I really liked this first episode though I found it short, even if some parts of it seems long (but it's the time taken to find how to solve some parts). It was a good premise for the story to come and for the price, it's not a waste of money - at least, for the first episode. I'm giving you a warning ahead for episode 2: I don't know what happened but it wasn't as good as this one.

I'm still waiting for episode 3 to make a conclusion for the whole series....
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Who
( 5.5 hrs on record )
Posted: April 25
For an episodic game this episode offers almost nothing of value.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
OhMagoo
( 3.4 hrs on record )
Posted: February 28
Through two episodes so far this has been an interesting enough game to keep me playing it. Episode two seemed to be an improvement over the first, hopefully episode three will also be a further improvement.

LIKES
Decent plot & storyline (not great, but interesting)
Comic book style is nice
Music for Episode 2 is ok
Good start/exit menu

DISLIKES
Way more mouse clicking than there should be
Some things/actions make no sense (instead of shooting the gutter, it just puts the gun in the gutter?)
Music for Episode 1 not the best
You can see & hear the enemies shots, but no sound or visual indication that our hero is firing any shots. He must be using a finger gun.

I am split on this one, there wasnt enough dislike to give it a thumbs down, but on the other hand i cant give it a whole hearted thumbs up either, so I will give a lukewarm thumbs up.

BTW - if you do for some weird reason, get your gun stuck in the gutter, the soup has to have hair in it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jiskra
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: February 28
Played first 2 episodes.
Very short, not very good, annoying shoting mechanic.
Its waste of time tbh. at least it doesnt waste too mutch of it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Aramax
( 3.7 hrs on record )
Posted: February 8
I know that this point and click game has 3 parts but judging from short length of the first part I know I won't be spending money on the DLC fellow ups of this game. In this game there is a grand total of 13 interactive still screens without any animation whatsoever, 30 clickable/interactive objects, I counted a little more then 100 drawings that are not really terrible but could easily be a lot better. Add to this the fact that the dialogue selection makes no impact on the game itself (you can click anywhere during the dialogue sequences it makes absolutely no difference) and you got yourself a game suffering from lack of content.

The story is also a mess... I seriously question the maturity of the people who made this game. If the developers are kids then it is a great first step into game development.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
SaltyBrains
( 1.5 hrs on record )
Posted: February 6
this is awesome! EP1 was short but intrigueing, fast paced and the puzzles are easy enough to keep it flowing without getting boring. interesting mix of action sequences and story/plot too. really enjoyable!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Trent
( 4.2 hrs on record )
Posted: January 28
Okay, I've giving this a thumb's up because I liked the art style and gameplay, but note that Episode 1 is VERY SHORT. Most of my time here was idling for cards prior to actually playing it several months later.

I think this is one of those games that if it were released in its entirety all at once, it would have better reviews, because many of the negative reviews were on how short it is. But it was probably a financial reality that they needed some revenue from Episode 1 to help fund development of future episodes. I don't know that for a fact-- just guessing.

Episode 2 is out now-- I don't have it yet. Maybe when all three episodes are out I'll revisit the game, because it does show promise.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Skoden
( 0.9 hrs on record )
Posted: January 15
Aweful. Just click and voice boxes splash the screen. Not real fun at all.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
HRPrime
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: December 7, 2015
This is a hard one. The game is nice but short.

First, it looks good. A comic book kind of style with still images that you interact with to progress with the story. Every screen will clearly show the tone and feel of an area.

The story is interesting and I was into it. The problem is that the game comes in two parts (more parts are to come, I assume). You can buy the game for $2 and get the first chapter. It then costs $3 for the next part, which really was a downer for me. It is very cheap which is why my verdict is recommened. $5 isn't a big problem but I wish the game was all together.

And the game is short. You will be stumped in the puzzle given but don't be fooled by my 2 Hours on record. I only finished the story of Chapter one in 45 Minutes. The rest of the time I idled for cards (I assumed I wouldn't need to).

Overall, a good buy at $2 and if it does go on sale, jump at it. I can't confirm if Episode 2 is the same since I don't own it and I don't feel like I should get it. Doesn't seem right.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Sojiro
( 4.0 hrs on record )
Posted: November 27, 2015
I suck at this type of game, but I still finished it in half an hour. The art is not very good, the music got on my nerve, the story is very mundane, and the puzzles aren't interesting. That's one of the most mediocre games I've ever seen. Not terrible, just extremely mediocre.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
84 of 107 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
16.7 hrs on record
Posted: April 3, 2015
Calling this a point and click adventure is stretching it a little bit. It is more like a choose your own adventure book. Theres very little interaction, your character is just drawn as part of the background. The writing is fan-fiction quality, maybe its better in german. The "gameplay" consists of clicking on 3-5 items in each room, which are drawn as part of the background, and choosing whether to look at them (which gives a 1 line description of the object), pick them up (or move to another room), or use an item. Theres no options menu, which is annoying because the game is insanely loud and only runs in fullscreen borderless, and there are no resolution options either.

The only well thought out feature is the "cutscenes", the way theyre presented in comic book style is kind of neat. Too bad theres no game around those.

I wish i could return this, because I dont support the idea of interactive stories being sold as games. It would have taken bare minimum effort to turn this into an actual point and click adventure with the drag-and-drop game making tools available today.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
43 of 54 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: April 4, 2015
Review on finished game (this episode). This game needs serious polishing, there are no voiceovers and I had to mute all sound due to the annoying background music. The description sounds great but ingame there isn't enough story setup. It is a short game, with about 20mins of me trying to figure out the last action sequence, which in fact ended up being simple.

The cartoon comic strip type gameplay, clicking on it to forward story I like, if the story was better fleshed out and written, more to do and a lot longer I would recommend it but even at $2.99 I didn't think it was worth it, and the first chapter of reversion is free point and click adventure and far better than this game. Premise is there and I do like the story, with a bit of tweaking and a LOT more gameplay and length maybe the next chapters will be worth it.

edit - Gameplay was just over an hour, cards have been added since hence the length.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
16 of 21 people (76%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 2, 2015
I'd say the music is definitely the best part about this game. Even though there's a distinct lack of sound design, and the gameplay could do be more interactive, the story doesn't fail to be interesting even when it falls into commonlike tropes. I think it's a nice start, hopefully we'll get to see more of it, it's hard to judge something through a pilot. Personally I'd like to see some improvements on the interface (minor stuff) and I believe voice acting could help a lot.

In terms of characters, I have to say that besides the broody protagonist, the female leads, Sarah and C, are very likeable and well written. C is my favorite, even though I can't quite place it. All and all, a small taste of hopefully more things to come.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 11
Jack is a member of the local force, in a world where downtown is equal to a prison, at least, for the upper citizens, not aware of the reality. However, one day, his pregnant wife got killed in an explosion and he never recovered from that. Now ousted from the force, he's contacted by the same terrorists that need his help. Is what Jack always believed in really the truth?

Return NULL is an episodic adventure game in a dystopian world, where those living downtown are oppressed by the authorities, without really a perspective to survive and with the truth being hidden to the upper citizens (though they can be thrown down to what is described as a prison/jail). The story is interesting as we meet Jack before the death of his wife and after he's ousted from the forces because of the depression that followed. While Jack wants revenge, he's convinced that maybe the truth isn't the truth and is now ready to take down the society he once swore to protect. Everything is centered around plans of a bomb, even in the second episode.

However, I will only concentrate on the first episode as the second is available as a DLC and I will not spoil it. So, this introduction is interesting as you're leading a depressed yet determined Jack in the streets of this upper part of the city, not realizing of what is really happening down there (Jack himself isn't really sure of what to find, even if he knows the truth about it) or being afraid of the local forces, as people are taken and never seen to return.

The gameplay is a point-&-click game: you speak with people, you interact with them, you find items, you solve puzzles. There is nothing extraordinary added to Return NULL on that point and it's working perfectly. However, as it's a game with choices to make, you can expect some impact on the story (nothing really major, apart on the dialogues). It's just the way you will behave with people and how you will blame yourself on your wife's death. Besides, you can be met with a gameover as you have some action in the game.

What I liked in that game is also the graphics. I loved how the characters are depicted in a comic style. However, there is no real animation in the game. You're just in a static background. Jack isn't moving around, you're just pointing on where to go or where to interact and it's done like that, like in a casual adventure/hidden object games.

I also liked the soundtrack. However, there are no voice acting. You just read the dialogues as in a comic book.

I really liked this first episode though I found it short, even if some parts of it seems long (but it's the time taken to find how to solve some parts). It was a good premise for the story to come and for the price, it's not a waste of money - at least, for the first episode. I'm giving you a warning ahead for episode 2: I don't know what happened but it wasn't as good as this one.

I'm still waiting for episode 3 to make a conclusion for the whole series....
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 16 people (75%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
9.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 1, 2015
Quick review:
This is a low budget but nicely envisaged BEGINNING to a story set in a dystopian future. The art is of a comic book style and reasonably well drawn. There is no animation and no voice acting (I don't find this a big problem) but the plot so far makes me hope that this could turn into an engaging and enjoyable story. The puzzles are traditional point and click style inventory puzzles that are sensible but too easy. You'll get through the chapter in around an hour. I don't feel chapter 1 was worth paying for on its own purely because it is so incredibly short.

More detail:
Return NULL has a few things that are very promising. The writers have created a dystopian future world that is, initially at least, interesting and a main character with some depth and a back story that makes you want to know more. From playing the first episode I really, really hope that this develops into a full blown well written science fiction story.

However the first chapter feels more like a taster than a proper first chapter to a game. It's not even as much as some games offer as a free demo. I think comments about the low budget sound and visuals are a little unfair given the cost of the game but if the developers want us to believe that this is a story worth hearing, they should have given us a a bit more detail. This could have been in the form of more characters to interact with, a few more locations to explore, or a few more puzzles.

I really hope that when the developers get the funds they will make a more substantial chapter 2 but I'm not holding my breath.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 7, 2015
For the price its quite good basically for what is does.
I really liked the storyline and the actions parts of the game like shooting.
But basically its better to brake it down in parts.

Graphics 5/10

Overall the graphics are not that great. The backgrounds are quite good and have some form of detail but the characters are non-detailed and that really annoying me from scene1.

Sound 7/10

I loved the music background.It fits perfectly with the mood of the game. I hope they can increase only the quality of some SFX like the soothing or some minor ones but generally its really good.

Story 7/10

Really nice one. They make you understand whats going on from the start but without giving you too much details and also make you get “attached” with the main character for what happens to him. At some points felt some TV series episode, but i must confess that i had some issues with going to fast at some points with the story.

Gameplay 6/10

Simple enough basically. You don’t have to make anything ..difficult… mostly click to progress the story except some few moments that you have shoot so you much lick the bad guy at the right moment before he shoot you back. UI its also simple and nothing to talk about really. Basics but functional. I wish they can implement most interactive parts, like the shooting. Something like defuse a bomb, open key door or something like that. Its too static and you can feel that after some time.

Overall 6/10

For sure its not the best but NOT the worst game. I enjoy the story and i hope the Part 2 will be as good as this one. With some fixes and implementations this one can be really one of the top of his category.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
3.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 5, 2015
8/10 - Interactive Dystopian Comicbook. - Must Buy

This game took a little to get used to but it quickly becomes a favorite! The feel of the game is amazing, fun objectives to complete to advance the story.

The only downside is that the episode is shorter in nature, and it's been almost 6 months since the release. Episode is coming soon though.

This game is worth much more than $2. A must buy!

Accidently Reviewed
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Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 28
Okay, I've giving this a thumb's up because I liked the art style and gameplay, but note that Episode 1 is VERY SHORT. Most of my time here was idling for cards prior to actually playing it several months later.

I think this is one of those games that if it were released in its entirety all at once, it would have better reviews, because many of the negative reviews were on how short it is. But it was probably a financial reality that they needed some revenue from Episode 1 to help fund development of future episodes. I don't know that for a fact-- just guessing.

Episode 2 is out now-- I don't have it yet. Maybe when all three episodes are out I'll revisit the game, because it does show promise.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 7, 2015
This is a hard one. The game is nice but short.

First, it looks good. A comic book kind of style with still images that you interact with to progress with the story. Every screen will clearly show the tone and feel of an area.

The story is interesting and I was into it. The problem is that the game comes in two parts (more parts are to come, I assume). You can buy the game for $2 and get the first chapter. It then costs $3 for the next part, which really was a downer for me. It is very cheap which is why my verdict is recommened. $5 isn't a big problem but I wish the game was all together.

And the game is short. You will be stumped in the puzzle given but don't be fooled by my 2 Hours on record. I only finished the story of Chapter one in 45 Minutes. The rest of the time I idled for cards (I assumed I wouldn't need to).

Overall, a good buy at $2 and if it does go on sale, jump at it. I can't confirm if Episode 2 is the same since I don't own it and I don't feel like I should get it. Doesn't seem right.
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18 of 33 people (55%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: April 2, 2015
A simple point and click with a interesting dystopian setting.

https://youtu.be/pihrm0cVsxE

You play as a cop named Jack. And you are investigating a bomb threat in a normal appartment.
Something goes wrong and we have a time skip of two years as he finally gives up his badge and gun.

Though that doesn't stop our story and so we continue on and story things happen.
Don't wanna spoil you too much even though the story so far isn't that amazing, but the art style does help the game in setting a nice mood for it.

It's quite cheap too , but it seems to be a episodic game so you'll have to pay more down the line if you want the full experience.

Do take a look of my playthrough of it if you are interested.

https://youtu.be/pihrm0cVsxE
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