Trippy, Mind-Bending, and Too Short
Asemblance is a psychological thriller game played in first person. And this is only the pilot episode of what the developer Nilo Studios is looking to make into a franchise. It was inspired by: The Twilight Zone, The X-files, and the Black Mirror television series. All with their own levels of psychological bends.
At the start of the game, there will be a blaring alarm and flashing red-light with a voice telling you to do something. As soon as you can move and get to the terminal, the alarms and light will be stopped. You’ll be asked for the first of several times how you’re feeling: Great, Not Good, Angry and Confused, or Confused. The answers to these do not seem to change any of the game’s outcomes.
Once that is finished the first of 4 simulations will be open to you. The voice of the AI will talk and guide you slightly as you explore each simulation. Do not misjudge, the AI will not be holding your hand and walking you to the answers. The answers themselves will not be terribly hard to find if you look. The papers on desks and recordings should be listened to carefully. As conditions are met, changes can be noticed: Items in the room, open doors that were once closed, the AI itself starts to alter and more.
There will be times when it will come back to what seems like the start of the game. Literally the start, the title screen will appear, and, to go more in depth, it involves going back into the game. There is a lot of looping back through simulations – entering in and out of areas to find the clues that might have been missed or were not even there before.
But what is real? That is the first of many questions this game poses. This one’s answer might seem a bit obvious in that these are just simulations of memories. But when the memories change, then what is the correct memory? Are they even your memories? It is hard to say, and, being the pilot, I do not see many answers to all the questions the game has to offer.
There are multiple endings. I will admit that I have yet to get them all. Part of the issue with the one I’m stuck on is the precise timing I’ve learned is needed. The ending is called ‘White Shift’. After entering the simulation, you need to wait a minute, perform an action, then wait another minutes to focus on a certain point in a room. Even this is only obtainable after entering into another potential ending. The endings seem to layer themselves. Once one is open, as long as you keep exploring, you can have the option of progressing to the next one.
The visuals of this game looked great, at first that is. I still find the lighting and some of the visual effects done to be great. The textures and some of the models are what ended up looking off in places. Like a butterfly that if you look at it one side of the wings is not good parallel to the other. Or another butterfly that is hovering on a rock.
The world creation is where this game shines. The limited amount of areas is full of small details. When looking at random documents and reading them, they’ll have actual information – not just gibberish to make it look like a document was written without any real content. This level of detail to the world makes me all the more excited to see where the developers take this franchise and all the more curious to the mysteries still held within this game.