Sunday, 3 October 2010

Eurogamer Expo: Gemini Rue

So as you might have noticed I was at the Eurogamer Expo today. And only today, and not the whole three days that the event took place over because A) the weekend tickets were sold out before I realised it was happening and B) spending three days in London might just be enough to finally send me round the bend entirely. As it was five hours was more than enough in that place.

And more than enough to see everything at the show that I wanted to see. I had missed the RPS meet up and the presentation of Deus Ex: Human Revolution on Friday and Shogun and Rage really aren't my kind of thing. Because I'm not getting paid for this, I can make the decision to ignore them. :)

Here is something I did not ignore:

Gemini Rue (previously known as Boryokudan Rue) is a point-and-click future-noir story created by Joshua Nuernberger and, if I am not mistakenly remembering the flashed-up names in the intro cinematic, to be published by Wadjet Eye Games. Set against a galaxy explored and colonised by man, the story unfolds through the eyes and actions of two central characters: one a retired assassin who, in the demo I played, is searching the downtown blocks of a rainy, oppressive city on a distant planet for a contact who has gone underground; the other is a prisoner of a mysterious organisation (aren't they all?) who has suffered repeated memory wipes in the course of his jailers' investigations.

The immediate sensation is of place, of the characters really inhabiting a world. It looks used and lived in, it feels like a not-so-distant world captured through (beautifully painted) CCTV cameras or seen from across the street. It is the little things that make the difference: the way water drips from a ceiling or the weariness in a store clerk's dialogue. Even in the logic of the puzzles. This is not a game of infinite-pants and obscure combinations. If you want some information, the most expedient way is to think logically about how you would find it out in a real world. Sometimes asking gets you a long way. That said, I did miss a fairly obvious solution early on and spent some time attempting to brute force the answer to the puzzle. This actually did work, but only because the answer provided a different kind of 'no' to the others.

I did not get far, however, as I feel distinctly nervous with a queue forming behind me and even in the Indie Arcade's out of the way corner of the floor there were plenty of people looking to play, but in just 10 minutes or so Gemini Rue made a big impression on me.

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