The Pale Beyond, the tried and true of a narrative adventure in the ice

The Pale Beyond, the tried and true of a narrative adventure in the ice

The Pale Beyond

Many authors, especially in the indie field, continue to think about the concept of choice in video games, that is how to give the player the feeling that his personal contribution is essential for the unfolding of the adventure he is experiencing, making choices that alter his course, often significantly. It is largely an illusion, but nonetheless it is a pleasant illusion, like the one we experienced in The Pale Beyond rehearsal.

Narrative Adventure

A Sea Voyage that will take us to inaccessible lands Bellular Studios has created a narrative adventure, which also tells where it proposes classic game systems, linked to the management of the crew. But let's go in order. The Pale Beyond is about an organized expedition to try to recover the Viscount, her crew and, above all, her discoveries. The ship disappeared five years before the events narrated in the game, going in search of the magnetic South Pole beyond the strait of Pale Passage. Now, aboard the Temperance, sister ship of the Viscount, Captain Hunt wants to find out what happened by retracing the same path. He already knows that it will be a very difficult mission, but he wants to try it anyway, bringing with him a crew of skilled and somewhat borderline sailors.

The first part of the game, that of the demo, basically presents the beginning of the journey. Through a series of multiple choice dialogues the player, who plays the role of the boatswain, will first have to provide a background to his character, thus defining some traits that will often return in the dialogues, then he will have to support the captain in the choice of some crew members , for example by accepting or refusing the presence of a dog trainer, or by keeping or chasing a clandestine boy, the son of another crew member. Each choice made will in some way affect the ship's values. For example, admitting new members to the crew means having to use more rations a week to feed everyone, but net of having some advantages in operations such as better handling of sled dogs if you decide to keep the trainer on board.

In general the characters meet in the various places of the ship first, and in the places of the expedition then and, when they have something to say, they show a dialogue icon that can be clicked on. Some are mandatory steps, in the sense that they serve to move the story forward, while others are optional and are intended to better know people and the context in which we are operating. In any case, the game system allows you to make choices, which affect relationships with the characters, in sometimes unexpected ways (for example being too authoritarian will irritate some, but it will come in handy later) such as being more or less abrupt with a shipboard photographer we meet while she is doing something risky, or press more on a certain sailor to find out the real reasons for the expedition.

Yes, because one of the knots opened from the beginning is a big mystery that is the background of the whole trip: what was Viscount really looking for, worth a second expedition? Who pays for such a very expensive undertaking? Why does Captain Hunt seem obsessed with it?

Lost in the ice

The game is basically managed through a series of dialogues Of course, the demo does not answer these questions, since it stops at beginning of the game, practically in the early stages of the actual expedition, when we arrive on the ice we are forced to take command due to the disappearance of Captain Hunt, making us vote by the crew. At that point the problems seem to multiply and the choices to become harder and more significant, but it is also the moment in which the demo reaches its natural end, referring us to the final version. In general, The Pale Beyond seemed to us a well-built title, with a fascinating and well-told story, also thanks to the beautiful designs that form the game graphics. Some mechanics certainly need to be deepened, since it seemed to us to barely scratch the surface of everything, but what matters is that the demonstration version left us the desire to do so, which to be honest is a bit its role. br>
The premises of The Pale Beyond are excellent and, within its genre, it can represent something significant if it manages to maintain its focus until the end, without getting lost along the way or ending up being channeled into too predictable forms . Seeing the choices made produce effects gives a great sense of satisfaction, even if we don't know how much it will affect the ending of the story. Anyway, storytelling-focused video game enthusiasts should at least try the demo, because it's worth it, waiting for the final version, scheduled for 2022.


The choices of the player seem to really affect the game The story seems interesting DOUBTS Anyone who does not know English can avoid it from the demo Have you noticed any errors?

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