farewell project Benoit Sokal in the Universe Syberia will be released in early March of this year, but we have already played the press preview with three initial episodes and are in a hurry to share our first impressions.
The story begins in the fictional city of Wagen, vaguely reminiscent of pre-war Vienna. Outside the window is 1937, and the daughter of the famous artist Dana Rose, at the age of 17, has already managed to win the fame of a musical genius. Having performed a piercing tune with the participation of automatons in the main square of the city, Dana returns home and faces the first threats of nationalists. Already looming over Europe is the Nazi monster, which here is called the “Brown Shadows”…
At a bright moment in the family drama, players are transported to 2004: somewhere in the taiga, Kate Walker, along with her beloved lesbian friend, work in a salt mine under the protection of Russian neo-Nazis. After a poignant introduction by the authors about true same-sex love, two brutal girls go to the extraction of rock salt, where an old Nazi train is found in one of the tunnels. Here the story takes a sharp and tragic turn, and now Kate Walker rushes to Wagen to look for the girl from the picture of the beginning of the last century. There, the heroine is waiting for a lot of discoveries, including the sudden return of the automaton Oscar.
The plot is still reminiscent of B-movies, but the authors demonstrate a detailed world of steampunk civilization. Automatons drive trams, brightly appear from secret connectors and fill the world of Syberia with the halo of a fairy tale. Surprising is the elaboration of details and the fullness of the environment – what was one of the weak points of the last part of the series. Management has become much more intuitive, and puzzles have taken a step towards the player. Almost all riddles are solved without outside help and include understandable behavior algorithms, but if you get stuck, you can use a hint at any time. And it does not destroy the logic of the game. At the same time, there are significantly fewer interactions with objects, and the emphasis is on the natural development of history instead of searching for objects on the screen or using strange combinations.
Graphically, Syberia – The World Before looks modern, supports trendy effects and has a 4K resolution. True, there were some bugs. Several times the game started to slow down wildly during cutscenes, which was solved by a complete restart of the application. But by the release of these problems should be fixed.
The first three chapters of Syberia – The World Before cause mixed impressions. On the one hand, this is a fairly comfortable adventure with clear mechanics and a well-designed environment, but on the other hand, the story itself and the motivation of the characters raise too many questions. The return of the Oscars should warm the hearts of die-hard fans, but the episode with Kate’s shaved head and the lesbian theme looks unnatural. What happens in the end, we will be able to tell already in our review of the final version in early March this year.
Author: Alexander Loginov (xtr)