Publisher: Daedalic Entertainment
Developer: Daedalic Entertainment
Price: £34.99 / $39.99
I’m a guy who really loves the whole sci-fi, noir, futuristic idea. It’s a vision used in many a good read or movie and more importantly video games. So let’s strap ourselves in for a ride into Berlin 2048 and let’s talk State of Mind.
This game is quite honestly an enjoyable third-person thriller/walking sim, with a story that involves shady Corporations, bombs and armed Bots policing the streets of a futuristic Berlin. From the moment I began my playthrough of this game I could not take my eyes off of the screen, the fantastic visual style that has been used here really adds to the atmospheric tone the developers were going for. When I played this on my big screen tv (OK, it’s not that big 50 inch), the city-scape just looked glorious, I really applaud the efforts that Daedalic have gone to here to show off such a fantastic visual spectacle and I cannot praise the choice of polygons enough, it suits the game so much and reflects on the fractured life of the main character, one Mr Richard Nolan.
Richard is a moody and intense kind of guy, he is a no-nonsense, award-winning journalist who works for The Voice and he despises all things technological. Richard is trying to piece his life back together after waking up from a car accident, he is trying to adjust after leaving the hospital and when he returns home he discovers his wife and child have gone away to the in-laws…..or have they?
This is where the story picks up and you can expect the story to touch on such social tones and fears like AI, surveillance, and reliance on technology as they are there for everyone to see. This isn’t a bad thing at all, I like a game to make me think especially when these arguments are always prevalent in real life. Like Detroit Become Human on PS4, Robots are obviously great at the jobs they do and have taken over jobs in certain areas which in turn sees unemployment and despair rise amongst the humans. Some may hate the technological advances made but others really have embraced the jump forward. Richard needs to find out what has happened to his family and he will need to utilize what he can to do so, even if it means embracing the technology he despises. Keep playing as Richard gets drawn into a seedy underworld of dealers trading codes and information for a high price.
There are other characters that pop up in State of Mind’s world, I don’t want to spoil anything for you and I want you to enjoy this as much as I have. Allow me to say that the other characters really add to the world and help to flesh out the story and narrative, People are not always what they seem to be.
Let us move on to the controls. These are easy and whilst this game is a third person futuristic thriller, it also feels like a Point and Click game without being one. Let’s start with the obvious, the dual analog sticks control your movement and looking around as is the norm. The A button is your action button, it will be the main button that carries out the most actions/interactions such as talk, open etc. the R shoulder button is used to make Richard run/sprint which is great as I can be known to be an impatient gamer and I like to get where I’m going quickly. Up on the D-pad will open up a sub-menu where you find your inventory, contacts, messages etc. the X button is the examine button and gives you a brief rundown on the person/machinery or whatever you happen to press examine on. The controls feel nice and responsive and the layout is easy to use.
On to the music, I have mentioned in a previous review that during gaming I usually switch off to the background music when playing games, however, whilst playing State of Mind I found myself enjoying the dark and moody themes accompanying the film noir images on the screen. Taking its cue from movies such as Blade Runner in terms of cinematic imagery the score isn’t far behind, it is dark and moody and really helps set the scene in this dystopian future. There are so many films that have clearly had an influence on this game and all credit to Daedalic Entertainment for creating a world that sucks you in.
During my time playing this, I have noticed that there are some bugs, the ability to walk through textures and occasionally my character seemed unable to move. Once I reset the game it seemed fine and I was able to continue my game again. For those of you who love achievements and are still holding a grudge against Nintendo for not implementing its own system, State of Mind does have its own achievements list built-in and this can be accessed via the pause menu to see how many you have got or need to get.
There were times playing this game that I would feel slightly unsure where or what to do next and I found myself examining items all around just to make sure I could advance, it isn’t very often this happens and didn’t spoil my enjoyment and for the most part the game runs really well docked or handheld.
Allow me to just spend a few moments to just say how much I love the world that has been on show in this game, you can see the dark city streets being lit up at night by the fluorescent neon signs of the nightclubs and hotels. As you walk around and see the steam rising up from manhole covers or the rain beating down, this to me is such a beautiful game and the way it is presented is fantastic and this game is a must for Switch owners. I love that you can hear the distant sirens of police vehicles sounding off, this games sets its stall out and wants to draw you into its world and I say let it. I keep finding myself using the screenshot button to capture the sheer brilliance on-screen.
No copyright infringement is intended, I do not claim ownership of any of the images used in this article, all credit to the original image providers.