Adventures to judge is always tricky – especially when it comes to the quality of the puzzles: While Genre fans are always thirsting for new challenges, all the other rather lightweight food prefer to have a good story. “Syberia: The World Before” succeeds this burr hike between “not too light” and “not too heavy”, yet it would have been quieter even more demanding. The story is largely successful and a clear improvement over the failed predecessor. This is mainly due to the figure Dana Roze, whose fate is much more exciting and plausible than that of the unsteaded Kate Walker. Otherwise, it is rather small things that disturb – including the clever, but faulty hotspot control or the unnecessary puzzle finale. “Syberia: The World Before” is not a milestone, but under the line a good adventure. It lives above all from the beautiful backdrop, which radiates a lot of flair and charm. Therefore, another part would be quite welcome – if this is possible without the deceased Benoît Sokal ever.
- Gorgeous backdrop
- Intelligent hotspot control
- Good puzzle design
- Zumiger plot around Dana Roze…
- … While the stories are coated with respect to Kate Walker and even unpigamentally sound
- The hotspot icons are very poorly recognizable on white surfaces
- Towards the end, the puzzles unnecessarily stretch the story
“Syberia: The World Before” is the fourth part of an Adventure series, which took its beginning 20 years ago. They again accompany the adventurous Kate Walkers, who represents research on a woman named Dana Reze this time. Although the story partially offers heavy diet because it treats about the horrors of the Second World War, the new “Syberia” is a rather tranquil adventure. Unfortunately, Benoît Sokal died, the creator of the series, 2021. The rest of the developer team continued the work at his last work fortunately and publishes “Syberia: The World Before” to his honor.
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Kate Walker is finally at the end: It sits according to the dramatic events of “Syberia 3” in a Siberian labor camp and must spurge ivory teeth there. She dares flee together with her cells-like cast and girlfriend Katjuscha, which in the end only Kate survives. Without a concrete goal in mind, she clings to the picture of a woman named Dana Roze, which looks similar to her to confuse. Quick the question arises: is the coincidence? Or are the two somehow related to each other?
“Syberia: The World Before” is a classic point-and-click adventure, in which you are traveling to place to place, talk to people and manipulate objects to solve puzzles. In contrast to the predecessors, they assume this time the role of several characters, mainly Kate and Dana. The game then changes between the past in all regularity (mainly in 1937) and the present (the year 2005).
The world of “Syberia” combines real historical events with fictitious persons and places. So there is no Nazis at the time of World War II, but the so-called brown shadows. And instead of the Jews, the Vagerans are persecuted, which in turn poses the mostly invented city of Vaghen in the midst of Osterterhal.
The quality of history fluctuates between exciting and exhausting. Most of the time they discuss the secret of Dana Roze, whose career and fate is credibly told about wide stretches. These include a few twists and phrases that you get too early. So it is not uncommon for Kate Walker to encounter a knowledge that they have put together hours ago.
In general, the plot releases around Kate, which is searched for by past events – which is not really understandable without knowledge of its predecessors. Although a video breakup of the series can be viewed in the options menu, but it is far too short and above all too harmonize.
The backdrop lives primarily of beautiful mountain landscapes and of course the playful machines of Hans Voralberg, one of the central characters of the first two “Syberia” games. Due to their dark brown color, they look rustic and thanks to their anthropomorphic shape at the same time alive and play an important role in the puzzles. So some mechanics argue argely complicated, for example if you need to use multiple levers to operate a driving ticket machine. However, this also has its own charm, which makes the world of “Syberia” something special.
All in all, “Syberia: The World Before” impresses with a great graphic that is puffing only before playful details and therefore even a few technical inadequacies to laminate. Who looks more closely, who notices one or the other dirty texture wallpaper. But ultimately, the overall picture is true, which is why the adventure is already one of the most beautiful games of the year.
Innovative control with childhood diseases
Normally, it is not necessary to write about the control of a point-and-click adventure. But in the case of “Syberia: The World Before” there are several points that notice – both positive and negative. In the center is the surprisingly original hotspot option, which shows how many other adventures displays all interesting objects in the form of a small icon. The simple mechanics has been established as a genre standard years ago because they avoid annoying search engines. However, while in other games, you can easily see everything relevant to the touch of a button, you must move the mouse over the screen in “Syberia: The World Before” as in the good old times. The hotspots only appear when the cursor is nearby.
The idea turns out to be surprisingly clever because it supports the player without taking him to the hand. Finally, it is quite attractive to see a new place and to be pleased to look forward to it when you found something important. However, the developers of Microids also undergo a few Patzer, which would have been avoidable with something fine tuning. First of all, there are problems with the click of hotspots as soon as the camera moves. Often, the Adventure registers the click of the player too late and sends Kate and Dana to a completely wrong position.
Also annoying: the hotspot icons are snow white, which is why they barely see them on bright backgrounds. Here it would have been helpful if it was the icon in different colors and choosing the game depending on the situation, which ensures the best overview. Finally, a few praising words about the puzzle design: The game must always serve or repair various machines, sometimes with the help of a small manual and sometimes by stupides “Trial & Error”.
On selected places, he may even switch between the characters at the touch of a button and, for example, must find an indication in the past with Dana, which Kate needs in turn in the presence. Unfortunately, it exaggerates the game towards the end of a little with the problems that the player or the player should solve the player. They always feel artificial and rather than if the makers wanted to deliberately pull the playing time.
Release: “Syberia: The World Before” appeared on March 18, 2022 for PC. The game has an age release from 12 years and costs 40 Euro.