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Resonance (PC) Review

/ Jul 6th, 2012 No Comments

Resonance (PC) Review

Resonance (PC) Review

Resonance (PC) Review

Resonance is an independently created PC adventure game by Wadjet Eye Games (they’re also responsible for publishing it as well) in conjunction with XII Games. It has taken five years to create: a long stretch of time that would be undoubtedly be balked at and even penalized by mainstream game companies who tend to view profit over results. But because the developers are independent game makers, the choice to work at a slow and steady speed in order to make a game of high quality is admirable and its release has been a long time coming. Has the time spent on it been worth it? Well, let’s start at the beginning before that can be answered.

The story of Resonance takes place in a not too distant future in Aventine City, located somewhere in the United States. Beginning with a series of sudden attacks across the globe, the time is rewound 60 hours earlier with a sudden attack on Juno Labs and the death of a leading scientist. This event brings together four people of different backgrounds each of which plays a role in the widespread havoc that will occur in the days ahead as will their search behind the attack on the labs and the reason it occurred. But, in a nutshell, the future of humanity hangs in the balance.

Resonance adheres to the style of traditional adventure games with you controlling the movement and their actions with just the mouse not to mention have although in this game you will be required to use the keyboard at specific moments. The control scheme and interface make playing easy for people already acquainted with point and click adventure games and newcomers as well.

Resonance: An Attack On Juno Labs Sets The Stage

Resonance: An Attack On Juno Labs Sets The Stage

However, Resonance tries to be unique in introducing features to help differentiate it from other adventure games. First is the fact that you control not just one character but four. When you reach appropriate points in the game you’ll be able to switch between characters at any time no matter where you are. This is vital as you’ll require all characters to complete the game because each has unique traits that you’ll have to utilize in progress in the gamenot mention puzzles that require teamwork to overcome. It’s a mechanic that caters nicely to the interconnection of each character’s part in the story not to mention is a well designed feature.

Also unique is a memory system. It is divided into two separate categories: long term and short term. Long term memories are acquired automatically at important plot points and, when clicked, remind players of important information. Short term memories are objects and characters you encounter during the game that are made available after being clicked and dragged into the short term memory menu where they are stored. Both types of memory serve as a way of discussing specific topics with other characters in the game. By clicking and dragging either short or long term memories onto specified characters or into a box attached to the dialogue box during conversation, you’ll discuss the item in question if the game allows it. It’s a novel concept that makes dialogue in the game more than just picking out multiple dialogue choices from a text menu.

The game ranges in difficulty often requiring you to think logically and sometimes act quickly making for some intense moment. While at times very difficult, the developers are merciful and grant you some aid. You can ask any of the four main characters for help who often nudge you in the right direction. If you’re having problem with a puzzle, chances are there’s an alternative solution to it which can save you some frustration and can help you out if you are really desperate in advancing the game. You don’t even have to worry about dying as you’ll automatically be taken back to the moment before your fatal mishap occurred. Still, Resonance is a challenge that may at times elicit frustration but is still conquerable.

Resonance Review: In The Slums Of Edgetown

Resonance Review: In The Slums Of Edgetown

The graphics in Resonance are a mixture of sprite based characters and items who blend in well to well rendered backgrounds. Both characters and backgrounds are animated in smoothly. It gives the game a nostalgic look that is reminiscent of older adventure games such as Beneath a Steel Sky. What adds to the uniqueness of this game’s visuals is how the game displays dialogue in the form of thought and speech bubbles. This lends the game a comic book like feel which fits in well with the almost cartoonish look of the game.

There’s also a well composed soundtrack playing throughout the game helping to add to the mood of story and its world. But the real auditory gem is the voiceover work. This is a trademark of Wadjet Eye Games who have always striven to push the actors they’ve hired into delivering the best performance possible for their games. Resonance is no exception; all characters in the game, whether minor or major, all sound impressive and bring to life the cast of characters players encounter as they explore the world of Aventine City.

But it is the story that stands out the most. Although written as a science fiction story, Resonance comes across as more of an investigative mystery story. It’s a very good one at that which moves at a swift pace and is filled with plot twists, some dry humor, intrigue, interconnecting stories, suspense, and characters that genuinely feel like real human beings. The story even manages at times to be thought provoking and by utilizing themes such as morality and trust. There are even two different endings depending upon a final set of actions you take both of which are equally satisfying.

While it is superbly written, what stonewalls the story from being even greater is its length. To have such a strong narrative be of a medium length is disappointing as it feels like it deserves to go on longer, especially in regards to explaining how the future in this game came to be. This reluctance doesn’t cripple the story but it deals it a minor glancing blow that stays with it from beginning to end.

Even when you finish the game, there are many incentives to help encourage you to click the “new game” button again. There is an interactive commentary mode featuring the developers and an in-game achievement system. These are features ensure that replaying the game is just as enjoyable as the first time while encouraging you to explore the game more. It’s rare for an adventure game to literally try to make you want to replay it and Resonance is successful in its means of making you come back for more.

Resonance is a strong adventure that does reflect the long period of time put into shaping. Plus at $9.99 for a DRM free download from GOG.com or the official Wadjet Eye games site, the price of admission should be another consideration for playing it. And you should; it’s a high caliber experience that has been worth the wait and is a reminder that the adventure genre is not dead: it’s just been wrongfully neglected.

Overall Ratings – Resonance (PC)

Gameplay:

9/10

Story:

8/10

Graphics:

8/10

Sound:

9/10

OVERALL SCORE:

88%

Jonathan Anson

Jonathan Anson

A resident of Southern California, Jonathan Anson has been a lover of games ever since his father brought home a Windows 95 computer where he was first introduced to his first games. He previously worked for The Gamer Studio before jumping ship to Gaming Illustrated where he can be found showcasing his other love: writing. He is also in the process of attempting to acquire an AA degree in Journalism from Saddleback College.
Jonathan Anson

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