Friday, January 19

InnerSpace Review

InnerSpace is practically the first feature of the PolyKnight Games studio, a group of university students that today releases their first paid game on  Xbox One. We do not talk about anything related to the 1987 film, but a title that aims to bring something different to the genre of flight without wanting to deceive anyone. The purpose of InnerSpace is to relax and enjoy the journey in a game that rewards exploration and is so feared by many search for collectibles.


Repetition is a fundamental element in video games, but when you want to carry out something closer to the walking simulator, it can be something that hinders. That is the error of InnerSpace, which does not end up daring to be a shorter but intense experience, and ends up becoming heavy to want you to review the same corners or look at the superficial instead of focusing on it's background


The underlying narrative presents the Predecessors, a race that inhabited the Inverse, the peculiar world of this title. You are an autonomous and hybrid ship, since it acts both as a conventional aircraft in the air, as a submarine in the water. By collecting relics, you will try to discover the history of how demigods drained the Reverse and practically brought about their destruction. You will be the Cartographer, the ship that recovers ancient remains for the Archaeologist, the true master and who will open your eyes to what lies ahead.

Explore, discover and collect. They are in essence the three main actions for a game quite humble, without too many pretensions, but quite well written in relation to the background story. As for handling, without specifying the performance of lollipops and several pranks that require great skills of pilot, you will find a quite complex control scheme.

Each one of the scenarios that configure InnerSpace, is like a page of the history of the Inverse and it's decline, as well as a possible way of getting things back on track. Whether in the sky or in the air, the peculiarity of the planets is that they are hollow and therefore special rules are applied for gravity, acting outwards instead of outwards. However, as i said, it only works as a simple anecdote and this doesn't make the gameplay especially challenging.

The game will not only put you before the mission of recovering the relics of the Predecessors to know everything possible about the extinct civilization of Inverse, but sometimes you will find a series of structures that will make the Cartographer progress and adapt lost technologies to incorporate new functionalities. However, you could get much more out of the progression if you had opted for a style more like a metroidvania.

At the end of most of the levels, you will find "battles" against some demigods who still go through the stages, as heads of phase. However, until now you will find a paused title, perfect to disconnect and that will simply require that you cross or destroy some other area of ​​your body. No frenzied fighting or concern for a health bar nonexistent in this case.

Graphics & Design

With so much exploration, i'm glad that the scenarios despite their simplicity (modeled with basic polygonal shapes and decorated with fairly simple pastel colors) have a design that hides much more than what it looks like. I find certain nooks and crannies in which there will be some other item necessary or simple help to complete it, but it will never give the feeling of a short-distance movement game.

It helps a lot to the immersion -literal and figurative- the musical accompaniment of this title. As it's playable proposal, especially chill out melodies that make it complex to play InnerSpace on a sleepy afternoon in which you have not taken a nap stand out. Once again, the relaxation of the user is sought, in a different game experience at all levels, who will know how to value those who want to lower the piston and the revolutions from time to time.


What could be called as the premium opera of PolyKnight Games - at least commercially speaking - is a title that may have a certain lack of ambition in many of it's aspects, but what little it offers is delivered with guarantees. It's a calm title, something unusual in this generation of so much adrenaline rush and that makes it not for everyone, but those who seek a relaxing experience and a narrative more complex than it seems, will find a pleasant surprise in InnerSpace.

*Game was provided by the developer/publisher for this review


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