Stepsons of the universe
Of course, about the similarities with the Fallout in this case it is necessary to speak only conditionally. Rather, this is the bar of quality, which sought the creators of the game. We were promised a choice, non-linearity of the narrative, the original role-playing system, a high complexity — and the post-Apocalypse, let alone without him.
With the latter in INSOMNIA everything is simple-the writers decided not to trifle and banged the whole planet at once. To be more precise, the global internecine war destroyed the native world of the people of nomah, and the remnants of the survivors were forced to go look for a new home inside a giant spaceship-ark called “Object 6”.
Of course, despite its huge size, everyone “Object 6” could not accommodate. During the departure of the ship, many managed to get on Board illegally, getting a chance to survive, albeit in very difficult conditions — in the tightness and darkness of the technical sectors, in the absence of normal food and water.
Four hundred years the ship keeps the way to the destination — a certain “Evacuation Point”. After the initial chaos caused by the hasty departure, the situation stabilized. In the center of the “Object 6” is the UrB — isolated from other areas of the sector, inhabited by the descendants of those who received the legal right to be on Board during the Exodus. Here reigns a military dictatorship, but the standard of living — the highest on the station.
Around the Urba lies the near Radius — there are important technical facilities necessary for the operation of the station and the well-being of the urbanites. The population of those “hares”, the illegal got on the ship, which are called getters. Their way of life is uncomplicated and represents a continuous service for the benefit of the UrB, but this is much better than surviving in a Landfill — territories beyond the Near Radius. There reigns the anarchy and lawlessness, but the bandits and vagrants can be seen except the kriom — a poisonous plant that serves as food source for the residents of the Dump.
The game begins when the main character wakes up after waking from A big Dream. So called the procedure of long-term suspended animation: three-quarters of the population are inside special capsules in a huge repository called Limbo. If there is a need for certain specialists, these people are removed from the capsules, which can significantly save on food.
At this time, the awakening is not planned — there was an explosion in the Limb, which claimed hundreds of lives. As you may have guessed, it is our hero to understand the causes of what happened, which, as usual, will be only the beginning of a long story.
Post-Apocalypse in art Deco style
The player, unlike the main character, it is unknown that all these years was going on behind the walls of the capsule for sleep. To study a very unusual world have independently, through conversations with the NPC and observe what is happening on the “Object”. However, idleness will not work: we are immediately sent to perform one task, then another, the third … Someone may not like this course of business — in the original setting is quite difficult to understand like this at once, without clues in the form of “Laura”, which the creators of INSOMNIA share in no hurry. Considering their love for unusual names – that still a task.
To create the right atmosphere works not only the plot, but also the visual style, which turned out to be extremely successful and memorable. Before us is a retro-futurism, retro-futurism early but, unlike spectromancer Alien: Isolation. This is not even the 50-60-ies of XX century, and its very beginning. Perhaps the most striking example of this style and one of the sources of inspiration for the artists of the game — the silent film “metropolis” already in 1927.
Fanciful metal and plastic constructions, massive doors and high ceilings, cars of streamlined shapes and the General inhospitability of the environment achieved through lighting — this is how “Object 6″appears before us. If we leave aside questions about the rationality of this design and the love of artists to high ceilings on a spaceship, where every square centimeter of space should be worth its weight in gold, the result looks really original and beautiful.
From the sound expect no less, but will have to quickly disappointed. The surrounding sounds, firstly, are very scarce and monotonous, and secondly, they are repeated too often. It is good that in the settings you can Unscrew the ambient volume to zero — otherwise it is not easy to withstand this monotonous cacophony.
Audio dialogues do not wait — with the exception of a few sentences, all the characters keep a deathly silence. But enough of the text — though he takes more of a quantity than quality. Before us like a typical Russian RPG “old school” – nailed to the floor NPC, the standard lines in the dialogues, where you immediately notice what phrases are needed to create the entourage, and which may mean getting a new quest.
However, the story, despite the primitive flow and static world, it is possible to follow with interest, good some no variability occurring there. And the story of the protagonist, by the way, is not as simple as it seems at first glance. But the execution is lame with a terrible crunch.
On my word of honour and on one wing
This is true not only for the plot, but also for the whole project. Just think-eight years of development, three (!) campaigns on Kickstarter, and the output we get something only vaguely reminiscent of a modern game.
Ease of management? Forget — we have here the original implementation of the camera, which does not allow you to change the vertical angle of view. With a third-person view, this does not allow you to normally inspect really beautiful locations and very much hinders during the fight.
Battles and without it cause big questions-the intelligence of the enemies is extremely primitive. On attack they react sluggishly, preferring to stand still, instead of to act. In close combat, it is also easy to win if there is a shield: the main thing is to run to the enemy without getting shot. In General, the battle only at first look complicated-Yes, you can kill with one turn, but it is necessary to understand how the enemies behave, and it becomes too easy to win. If there’s a place to hide, of course.
The problems don’t end there. Control buttons can not be reassigned — fans of non-standard layouts in flight. “Lags” that arise out of nowhere during any fight, even with one or two opponents, constant errors, including those that lead to the inability to complete the task, textures of terrible quality, missing satellites and objects, problems with sound…
It may be worth overcoming all these shortcomings for the sake of an interesting story, but it will be very difficult. On one “visual”, no matter how beautiful it may be, the game does not do. And problems with it — if the environment still looks quite nice (except sometimes occurring textures are very low resolution), the character models though from the last century.
Well, forget about the mistakes and inconveniences-maybe INSOMNIA has a great role-playing component! The RPG system is quite simple and it is similar to the classic S. P. E. C. I. A. L. system, which has the same basic attributes as the Fallout and the main attributes and skills that affect the world, as well as the combat ones, not only the damage or the health reserve, but also the conversations with the NPC or the The character has the right amount of skill points — a new line may appear in the dialogue, which opens another version of the conversation. Similarly-when dealing with elements of the environment, such as doors or terminals.
On the map there is no magic pointers to the objectives of the current quest — it’s a conscious step in the direction of the same “old school” RPG, where the player does not stand on ceremony. You have to get a grasp of the dialogues and memorize keywords to know exactly where to go next. There are no records of conversations, but it does not matter — the job log will always tell you what to do. You can even accept the fact that in this journal there is no division into main and side tasks. But the absence of at least some “log” of the battle is much worse-the effectiveness of a weapon in a fight with different opponents have to be determined almost “by eye”. Periodically it is necessary to satisfy hunger and thirst, but neither to look at their current indicators, nor to learn how they influence the character, it won’t turn out — such information simply isn’t present.
At the moment, INSOMNIA looks like a typical “early access” (although formally it is not), which is equal to the death sentence — such good is now enough. There is a feeling that the developers of the last effort dragged the game to release, deciding to release at least something, instead of finishing the already protracted unfinished. Wait for patches? The project has already been in development indecently for a long time, hardly an extra six months or a year will make a candy out of it.
It seems that Mono Studio did not have enough experience: according to the authors, they are not professional developers and this is their first and only game. As if it did not become the last — a good design and story they managed to create, but to wrap it in a decent gameplay wrapper, the forces are not enough.
Probably, I too often mentioned the similarity of INSOMNIA with old domestic projects of this genre, but there is no escape from such comparisons. If the Samaritans set a goal to create an “old-school” RPG, then they did it. After all, these were at that time, many games: often uncomfortable, full of errors, but created on pure enthusiasm and, as they say, “with the soul.” The only pity is that it is 2018, not 1998.