Wednesday, January 31

Asemblance Review

If you woke up in an unknown place where you could travel to the past, to change some concrete decision of your life, would you do it? Unfortunately, there is nothing similar in the world, although the protagonist of Asemblance seems to have the possibility to do, so thanks to a strange machine, which allows him to travel to certain places and important moments of his life to try to modify some of his actions, trying to avoid a disaster.


Asemblance has a handicap that greatly disadvantages the experience of the game, and is that the game is too short. Bearing in mind that there are only four small scenarios to investigate, for many comings and goings that you do in search of clues, you will reach the end in less than a couple of hours and even in a few minutes if by chance you find the solutions quickly . Now, it's true that Asemblance invites patient research and there are several endings available, some of them are difficult to find. In addition, reference is made from the game to several internet pages, that you can consult, and you may even want to participate in various external forums to discuss your theories, as if it were a series of television mystery, but still knows a little. Well it's true, everything has to be said, that from the official website, they warn you about an upcoming continuation, so you only have the consolation that you can take Asemblance as a pilot episode, an aperitif of what is to come.


Asemblance is a strange and atypical work, although it uses tools that i have already seen in other games. Although, many want to see it, a kind of The Stanley Parable in a much more serious and even grim version, would not agree with the comparison. Yes, you have some freedom to move and perform the actions you want, but all of them are regulated under a fairly common game structure, in which you have to meet certain objectives if you want to continue moving forward with your curious plot.

More than The Stanley Parable has reminded me of P.T., the Silent Hill demo, although leaving aside the purest terror (although Asemblance also causes some fear, although in different ways). The game structure is very similar and the gameplay is identical, having to observe certain areas of the scenarios to influence them, as if you were placing one more piece of the puzzle, to look for a new one later and find a way to fit in the strange frame next to the rest. The title does not take place in a single apartment, but you will only visit a few scenarios, to which you must return on repeated occasions to try to continue unraveling the relevant challenges.

Moving forward is not impossible, and you will almost always find clues on the stage or even in the conversations, but it is true that it can be quite complex. The proof you have in what i have said above: Asemblance still has secrets that have not been discovered, so it's likely that you have to use some guide or the advice of a specific user at certain times. But that's not bad, since it seems to be the goal of this game, which is strange by nature.

The narrative of Asemblance is very peculiar and you must pay attention to the scenarios and all the words that are pronounced to you, to form in your head the story you want to narrate, which is quite interesting although at no time it exceeds beyond normal.

It's an independent title that makes you think and that feels fresh, since it's very different from other works that you face in a multitude of occasions and follow very similar patterns between them. However, although it has it's own personality, i missed something more original in it's approach and it's forms, because despite being interesting, it doesn't stop exploring the same routes that other games have already gone through. the past, but without improving them. Those elements that P.T. takes, such as the layout of the puzzles, the control or even the need to search and share information with the rest of users doesn't get to be as exceptional as in that case.

Graphics & Design

As for other more favorable aspect of the game, of course the technician stands out, thanks to the use of the Unreal 4 graphic tool, and to a very well chosen music and sounds with which a convincing atmosphere is achieved. The best are the video effects and the beauty of some images, although it's also true that some textures in low resolution and the almost null interaction with the objects (apart from the visual), since removing very few exceptions are no more what decorative elements. It would not have been more than the brevity of the scenarios had been compensated with elements involved in the gameplay, and from which to extract information; the notes that you can read are part of the decoration, so that almost all the available information is at first sight.


If this proposal catches your attention and you want to enjoy a trip that will remind you of it's forms as seen in works like P.T., with much less terror but equally emotional, Asemblance will fulfill your expectations. It's a great example of independent title that explores new ways of narrating and tries to make own external ideas, favoring it's final message, but perhaps it lacks the spark of surprise to get to stand out among so many great works.

*Game was provided by Nilo Studios for this review


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