My Overall Score 8/10:
Silence is a very well made point&click adventure game with a unique, dark twist to it. If you’re looking for a game to enjoy the story, as well as experience a trip to feeladelphia, and don't mind spending 29,99€, this game might be to your liking!
Synopsis&Official Site Link: http://steamcommunity.com/app/314790
Can you save Silence, the grim, but also serene world between life and death? Can you help Noah find his little sister Renie in this suffering world? Can you bring her home? Explore Silence and join the siblings on their adventurous journey.
Story Score: 7/10
Our first experience with Silence begins in a form of short video, depicting a happy scene of children making snowmen, which soon turns grim once the alarm sirens set off. During the video, we also get to see how our two main characters, Renie and Noah, struggle to reach the shelter.
First of all, Silence introduces its own storyline in small leaps, in the form of various scenes, during which the player's actions may often influence the outcomes of said scenes.
Scenes are main gameplay areas the player will encounter. They range from the shelter, a cavern, forested and mountain areas, to cities, ports and towers. The player can interact with multitude of things and items while in each of them, and many scenes offer multiple ways of solving problems, making the experience that much more interesting. Some of them give access to special minigames that can either be played, or skipped. A few others also trigger timed events which are all seemingly compulsory. There are also multiple instances where the player can change the course of events, but that statement is only true when coupled with not that many scenes being present in the game overall..
Outside of the general storyline being told during scenes, there are also some short movies played after, or right before any crucial instances in the game. They offer a fairly immersive experience and appear to fit very well with the game atmosphere as well.
Considering the storyline itself, it starts grim, turns grimer, then suddenly becomes pleasant, nice and pretty soon enough, only to revert to being grim once more. There are two endings (that I found) to the story, and neither of them is a happy one, which, truthfully speaking, fits the story nicely.
The several cons of the story I have found include a few very cliche story developments, some very limitted choice options, as well as visibly two-dimensionally acting characters. I would have also liked to say that the cons also include not very likeable characters, but that's actually a pro, story is made well enough to induce dislike towards some characters and their actions.
Music&Sound Effects Score: 8/10
Music in Silence is, quite ironically, practically ever-present. Not every area has a unique theme, but due to how short some scenes can be, it doesn't really bother the player much. The music can also be said to form one, fitting album, with that unique vibe to it that's normally present in music band's creations.
Although the music present in the game can be said to be quite fitting, it isn't exactly great enough to make one stop just to listen to it. It does not break immersion, but it also does not deepen it. It is simply a decent piece of soundtrack, with nothing to nitpick at.
While the soundtrack can't be said to be anything excellent, the variety and quality of sound effects the developers included in the game can be considered to be great, often causing one to stop for a moment, astonished as to how fitting those are... or disgusted by it, in some cases.
Game Mechanics Score: 9/10
Silence’s game mechanics are what one can expect from a point&click adventure type of game, simple and to the point.
Due to the game's theme, there really isn't much to say about it. Everything works as intended, and the entire uniqueness of game mechanics is shown through two separate matters, one being a fact that the player can interact with mostly anything in game, even if the items themselves have no influence whatsoever on gameplay, and the other being the little worm helper, Spot.
Interacting with anything can cause a variety of reactions, some clearly intended purely as a form of tension relievers, which is a big plus in my opinion, as Silence is a short game, but very succinct in it's content. So most certainly, do take your time to explore all of the wonders of this game. What's more, each of the interactibles might result in different outcomes depending on the time of interaction, as well as with whom we interact with.
There is also the existence of Spot, a big, greenish caterpillar, who is capable of changing it's shape and interacting with its surroundings in place of our main characters. In fact, there are a few instances where the player has only Spot available to go through a scene. It can become flat and strechy, round and floaty, or simply stay in its caterpillar form. All of those forms can interact with the surroundings in one way or another, what can make for both a fun playthrough, or a mundane checking for whichever form fits the current situation. Spot also posseses various other forms unlockable through interacting with certain substances, and their usage is generally fairly compulsory if one wants to proceed with the game.
Lastly, there is the hint option, allowing the player to see all of the interactibles, if he so chooses to use it. This option can be disabled in the options menu from what I know. I would suggest using this option only when you are not sure what to do next. On the other hand, it isn't helpful enough to make proceeding with the game plain and boring, so do use it whenever you feel the need to.
Gameplay Score: 7/10
Gameplay in Silence is unfortunately not very immersive, and although developers try to make it more interesting for the players through adding minigames and a couple of timed events, in the end it comes down to mundaneness of those solutions..
While expecting much from point&click games might be an exaggeration on my side, I try to be as stringent with my reviews as possible, to give the most objective and realistic view on things. Therefore, although there are no visible problems with the point&click itself, it does not really offer any novel solutions, or any more immersive interactively funtions either. Not much more can be said about it, it's just decent.
The minigames are kinda plain and timetaking, and although I would suggest going through them anyways as they offer certain additional information on the storyline, they do not have any replay value and are fully skippable. Timed events, on the other hand, come without a timer and the player has to guess on the remaining time from the animations shown. Which is quite a plus, but it can get in a way, especially since there are usually many more things to interact with than there is a need to in order to beat those events. The time one has is usually only enough to beat the event.
When it comes to saving, the game saves upon starting any timed event or changing between any scenes. Therefore, the only progress one can lose while exiting the game is the part between various scenes.
Graphics Score: 9/10
Graphics can be said to be fairly great, and decidedly unique. The game has its own very specific graphic style, some may like it, some may dislike it. It is a bit rough around the edges, but that also makes it more realistic at the same time. Overall both the graphics and animations are really fitting, and there is nothing bad to be said about them, if one were to look at how they look only, that is. There are mostly problems with some animations, which either end prematurely or simply look bad. There are also a few instances in the game where characters can go through some small textures, but overall, all of the problems are only enough to decrease the graphics score by 1 point. Fully enjoyable experience otherwise.
Hints&Tips Corner (Spoiler Alert):
When blocked and not sure what to do next, try going for least likely solutions, or outright switching scenes. This game was specifically made to look like a child's fantasy. Therefore, not all solutions are as logical as they should be.
All of the birds that can be found in the game represent other locations that need player's attention. Remember that there are multiple playable characters in the game, and some things do take place at the same time.