!NOTE! This is an older article published pre-revamp which does not follow the new format.
[ video + review + giveaway ]
| PC (Steam) Review December 22nd 2016 |
Suddenly coming to his senses at the top of a set of escalators whilst the night's heavy rain thrashes against the all-glass exterior, the first words your player character utters are "What the! Where the hell am I?". Those questions will circle around in your own mind as you descend, only to re-emerge at the top until eventually, a mysterious creature offers you a strange blue substance for tasting. As you oblige, reality warps around you and your adventure begins ...
Sinless is set in a utopian World which wants to distance itself completely from the now-bygone, "primitive" AD era. Due to catastrophic flooding, civilzation was forced to build it's habitation upwards, simultaneously diving the population geographically and caste-wise into lower, middle and upper classes. All citizens interface with scheduled programs through ports on their augmented bodies. These "progs" dictate what activites are acceptable on any given day. Anything else is considered a deviation from the "prog" and results in immediate punishment. The omnipresent 'OmniCare' is the megacorporation pulling the strings, insisting it's all for the public good; a mandatory ruleset that eliminates anti-social behaviour, resulting in a healthy, happy populace. A world without sin ...
Sinless has a strong sense of it's own aesthetic style and it's a pretty unique one: predominantly dark backdrops are flooded with neon-like bloom/lens flare lighting effects from the red/pink area of the color spectrum, corners and objects are semi-obscured with blurring or pixelization and characters are animated in a very minimalist, odd, entrancing way. It's a style that always leaves something to the imagination which really helps to immerse the player in the cyberpunk world that MGP studios have created.
Gameplay is essentially a visual novel with point 'n' click elements. Making the wrong decision or provoking the warth of the law can result in a 'Game Over' screen, but it's fun to discover the many ways you can end your character's existence. Interactivy is relatively limited: your standard "examine/look" and "use" actions are the staple here once again and there is no great deal of exploration or sidequests to be had. 2 mini-games and 2 instances of a puzzle are decent little bonuses.
Second to the unique presentation, sound and music is where Sinless really shines. The game comes with the OST included, which for many would probably be worth the price alone. Headphones are definitely recommended here (as advised by the developers) to experience the heavy electronic score. Most impressively, the intensity of the tracks increases as cetain revelations and milestones occur on-screen. It's a perfect compliment to the visuals and the combination of the two enhances the immersive experience.
The story is not particularly deep and influences from popular science fiction are evident. Little or no connection is made between any of the characters and most of what they have to say is strictly related to your progression through the story. There are however some interesting observations and theories relayed by a few of the seeminly inconsequential characters. At the same time, a strong argument could be made to explain this pervading, distant behaviour as a plot device. I suspect a clearer picutre will be painted in part 2, which I'm very much looking forward to.
GIVEAWAY [ x3 copies ]