Developer: Daedalic Entertainment
Publisher: Daedalic Entertainment
Price: Rs. 544 for PC via Steam
Before spanning landscapes, Havok physics and graphic novel adaptations; before the multitude of horror titles and indie efforts, there were the classic adventure games. Games like Grim Fandango, Maniac Mansion, Monkey Island and Leisure Suit Larry that threw mind-bending puzzles, expansive worlds and memorable characters across a hand-drawn palette. A New Beginning – Final Cut from Daedalic Entertainment is such an adventure game, sporting some very stunning 2D visuals and an intriguing story. However, it’s let down by the one thing past adventure games never had to worry about: Its budget.
A New Beginning has you playing as Fay, a time traveller, who travels with Bent, a retired algae specialist, who hails from a future where climate change has destroyed the earth (so an alternate reality according to Republicans). Being the ingenuous woman that she is, Fay decides to go back in time and convince the world’s leaders to take more stringent measures to control global warming such as renewable energy and lowered carbon emissions. You’d think it’d be more of those two, but there’s more than enough conversation about algae. As odd and touchy-feely as it seems, it’s actually a very solid story that’s both appropriately realistic and fantastic as need be. Best of all, there’s plenty of drama as both sides present their arguments for and against global warming.
However, when you’re involved in such an interactive story experience, a certain level of professional writing is required. And at times, it feels like Final Cut must’ve made a bad translation leap because a lot of the dialogue comes off as awkward. There are funny moments, so interspersed with regular goof-ups that nothing ends up being truly funny. The game also lacks a bit of polish, the kind of fine tuning that other adventure games pride themselves on.
At least the puzzles are intelligently designed, and break away from traditional adventure game tradition by being logical to solve. You won’t be straining too much to find the solution, but the game does duly allow you to skip some puzzles and even points out the location of the same. Again, such focus on the story is welcome but only exposes the weak writing all the more.
A New Beginning – Final Cut isn’t the quintessential game for your library or a must-have for die-hard fans but it is a pleasant play-through that only irritates by how much better it truly could’ve been.