You might remember Sonder as an intriguing-sounding real-time Day In The Life In Space game which boasted a prog-rock soundtrack. We’ve not covered it for a couple of years, but it’s just broken cover with news that it’s going episodic, and somehow also has The Who on its latest trailer.
That’s… very expensive to license, right? I thought only formulaic US crime series which have run for a hundred thousands seasons could do that? How is an episodic indie game doing it? Maybe someone on the team has got dirt on Daltrey.
Anyway, this remains a game high in promise – the idea is that you’re making decisions in real-time, with big outcomes depending on what you do and who you do it with. It’s non-linear, apparently, although I’m willing to get there are ‘good’ and ‘bad’ denouements to strive for. Is Ambient Real-Time Telltale Game With Massively Branching Consequences too much to hope for?
And yeah, they’ve gone multi-part rather than one big story, claiming that “the episodic format will allow KAMAi MEDIA to bring the game to gamers faster.” Reading between the lines, I guess something of the scope and scale they’re talking about is very tall order, so fair enough, but hopefully having break points won’t disrupt the sprawling non-linearity they’re talking about.
I also note they now talk of a “rewind mechanic that allows players to make different choices and experiment with the results.” I guess we’ll see how that works in practice, but it sounds a little like a get out of jail free card if you don’t like the consequences of your decisions or ineptitude.
Promising though, and with a lovely 70s sci-fi aesthetic (only slightly undermined by last year’s Alien: Isolation having got there first). I’m hoping for a less murderous, dehippified take on Silent Running myself.
The first episode is due sometime this Summer, all being well.