Text adventures, interactive fiction if you will, does not have to look plain. I know, it’s the words and, in certain cases, the puzzles that count, but it really can’t hurt if a texty game looks as lovely as Code 7 and its intelligent, elegant interface do.
Admittedly, the excellent voice acting on offer does also help quite a bit, but I would never dream of demanding such bells and whistles. I’m merely content with appreciating them when available; they give a cinematic flair to the proceedings. Even more so when supporting sci-fi horror offering Code 7 establish its atmosphere and very successful horror vibe.
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The writing and the way the game plays still does the heavy lifting, but it’s always nice to have some audiovisual support when you are trying to tell a tale with obvious influences from Aliens and Moon and play as a hacker who has just woken up in a creepy AI research lab and has to assist his companion in freeing both him and herself and figure out what’s going on.
Being asked to type in commands like robot.override and door.open or the fact that you can make wrong choices and die comes in handy too.
The hacking, spot-the-flashing-letter and guess-the-word mini game not so much though, especially when done under ridiculous time pressure. Despite loving every moment of Code 7 up until a particular hacking challenge, after failing it over a dozen of times, I simply had to give up on the game.
I do still highly recommend you give it a try. It will at the very least provide you with an hour or so of breaking into security systems, discovering mutilated bodies and following the plot’s clever twists and turns. Also, you might just be better at the thing than I could hope for.
And you might also want to know that the current version of Code 7 is merely a prologue to the full game, which will expand itself into a complete experience should it gather enough votes on Steam Greenlight.