I have seen this game a few months ago and watched the trailer provided from Steam. I got interested in it because it showed worlds that are unique and very artistic. I felt like purchasing this game but what stopped me was it was made by a developer that I never heard of before, and I have read a lot of reviews that had mixed feelings and never really came to the conclusion of recommending it or not. I also seen some reviews that are more negative saying it is too difficult; but lack in detail why.
I found this game on sale for only 99 cents, so I thought it wouldn't hurt to buy it now while it was that cheap. I did not regret my purchase at all. I was hooked to it until I finished it.
The plot is based on my interpretation, so everyone can be right or wrong. There are some holes because I do not fully understand it myself.
The plot as all about death; the protagonist is a spirit of the person who died. His soul happens to enter "The Void". The Void is a "place" where a soul can come back to be reclaimed by the holder (not every person who loses his soul enters The Void, instead the soul goes into "absolute death"). In The Void, the protagonist, the sisters, the brothers, and other creatures are both dead and alive; they all just exist.
He begins with nothing. A sister named "Death" aka "Nameless" gives him colour (in this game colour is a material that gives life) to help him survive, and tells him what is going on and prepares him to do what he is destined to. She tells him that if he doesn't have enough colour, he will go to absolute death. She teaches him how to revive trees by giving them colour so that they can give him more colour later on.
Sisters are women who are beautiful. They need his help on survival.
The protagonist has to be very careful when using colour because once he uses it, it is gone. In the void, everyone is deprived of colour. She tells him there are other sisters he can feed, so that he can ascend them into the world above where life is plentiful. Nameless warns him that there are brothers who are owned by each sister, who are mutilated, terrifying people who came from the "Nightmare" (from what I think, they ascended from absolute death) where colour is non-existent.
The brothers feel that The Void is a heaven, and they must preserve it. To preserve The Void, the brothers must feed the sisters colour to help maintain their realms (each sister has a realm of their own). The problem is, each colour is incompatible, and work against one another. Every time colour is used for anything, a realm that had colour used in it becomes damaged thus making predators (dangerous creatures) come. So the brothers only collect and feed the sisters as little as possible while keeping them “alive”, but the sisters are suffering because of this.
The sisters depend on the brothers and the brothers depend on the sisters to stay alive, but they also hate each other.
Only he has the ability to give colour to plants. The brothers become angry because they feel the protagonist is a parasite in The Void (which he is damaging The Void as he feeds the sisters and produce more colour). Some brothers tell the protagonist that he can help them by not feeding the sisters too much. A brother will attempt to kill the protagonist if he feeds a sister too much. Some brothers will attack you mercilessly if he does not do what they ask. Some sisters tell him to pick one to ascend, while others say he should decide to ascend yourself or one of the sisters. He can ascend only one sister, because he needs to get all colour in The Void to help her achieve that, thus killing everything, including the protagonist.
I have to warn you, there is an inescapable amount of nudity in the game (sisters).
I started the game and did what I was directed to in the game. At first the game was somewhat awkward because the way the brothers and sisters speak to you, but it eventually flows very well (mostly it feels awkward with the sisters). I walk to a sister who is clothed. I draw some colour have her speak to me. The screen fades out and back into another (dimension?) environment. The sister is completely nude and chained (each sister has different coloured chains). I feed the sister, the chains fall off. These are the times when they can talk to you, but they can talk to you when you are away. The times you see a brother is when you get interrupted travelling around the map of The Void by having the screen fading out and back again, and when you fight one. Brothers can also speak to you while you are walking around realms.
The gameplay mechanics is completely original. I never played a game that I draw on the screen with my mouse to interact with the environment and creatures. I love playing a game that is so different but so good. The gameplay is slow, but it is very weighty. What you do may hurt you tremendously later on (or game over). This game is not forgiving like almost every modern game. I had to plan ahead and compare very many variables to make a decision.
There are some glitches that are not a big deal, but there is one game-breaking issue when I mine for colour, sometimes the colour veins on rock is invisible. On the Developer's forum, it is a technical issue and the developers say you need to open the in-game console to activate wireframes if you ever encounter invisible veins. I had to do this because I experienced this. I had to back track a little because it screwed me up.
There are few boss battles that are a pain and I feel are not necessary because they require long waiting rather than using any skill.
The visuals are very artistic and creative; they are outstanding. I end up walking around in the game looking at the environments as I play. The developers are very creative for creating the brothers. There are some graphical hitches that really do hurt the atmosphere, but not many.
The music tracks in the game are outstanding. Completely intensifies the feel of the environments. There are a couple that do sound off though.
The voice acting is perfect. I loved all the dialogs and the voices of every character. All voices are unique, and many dialogs are poetic (most of the dialogs are easy to understand).
Almost every character says different things about other characters. Every character tells you the truth but lie about something else or tell you what they believe. So it is really hard to determine what is true and what is not true. Which I felt really made this game good.
What really disappointed me was all the endings are nearly identical, which really hurt replay value.
The game does not tell you how to play it the best right away, which is what I dislike about this game.
I really enjoyed this game. The issues said above are overlookable (except for the invisible veins). I spent 38 hours on my initial playthrough. I love the story. I give this an 8/10. I highly recommend this game to everyone. I do not recommend this to people who do not think and have poor decision making skills. I am saying this because this game does not hold your hand.
This game deserves the $10.00 it asks for.
I think this game should be remastered. If all of the issues said above were fixed and rethought, it would be a perfect game. I think the game will be so much better if the protagonist was given a voice and had the ability to make arguments like in Deus Ex: Human Revolution. That would be amazing. Giving variety to the endings will greatly increase the replay value as well.
Some people may become offended because of the portrayal of women in the game.
I played this game with some assistance of a guide because I was afraid of restarting a new game many times that could make the experience stale.
The guide is here: http://www.gamefaqs.com/pc/970707-the-void/faqs/62846
I give credit to the creator(s) of the guide.