Broken Pieces – Demo Impressions

Broken Pieces is a third-person horror/adventure, in the style of the old Resident Evil games, with set camera angles, inventory management and popping monsters with your pistol. It’s being developed by the French team Elseware Experience. The camera angles isn’t as static as in the old survival horror games, and you don’t have to suffer tank-controls (even if I like those controls personally), but the experience feels old-school nonetheless in the short demo provided by Steam.

You play as Elise, a French young woman caught up in something truly weird, that in the demo at least didn’t make much sense, but it probably will in the full game. It seems the world, or at least the area she is in (French coastal village) have been turned on its head, with weird ghostly creature attacks, Elise having manual control of the weather and other spooky and weird things like cults roaming about.

Yep, that is an unusual wave

The game controls and feels like the old RE games, minus the tank controls, and I think it’s a nice throwback overall. The combat have been spiced up a bit, though, comparable to the first two games in the RE series. In Broken Pieces, you can dodge attacks with a button press, and I would say it’s similar to RE 3 in that regard. You have to tag whoever you want to shoot, and wait for the reticle to get small enough to score a hit – so no manual aiming needed, and while it might sound simple, it’s still enjoyable. For some reason, I have always appreciated this old static way of combat – just standing still and emptying shots into slowly approaching ghouls. Now, this game is a bit more involved, as mentioned, but it’s the same premise and feel.

Walkman generation ftw!

The adventure feel is also pretty good, and while I had no idea what the story was about, except maybe a few snippets, it has me intrigued. The puzzles felt more like classic point & click gaming, than anything else, with you having to find clues and solutions to problems searching the environment. The only small issue here is that stuff written in the game world, for an example on walls, is in French, and while the protagonist translates what is says, it still feels a bit like missing out since I can’t read it myself. Luckily, everything gets automatically written down into Elise’s journal where you can find clues you found, and what your current objective is.

Visually, I think the game looks fine and pretty atmospheric, with some interesting background areas that had me wanting to go and investigate. Audio wise, it seems fine as well, and I did like the voice of the protagonist – which is an excellent thing. Otherwise, the game would probably get grating pretty fast, since she is a talker.

The game is well worth a try and wish-list, if you like the old survival horror games, or just adventure games in general, with a mystery/horror twist.

Thanks for reading.

/Thomas


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