If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on [email protected] for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact [email protected]


  • 30-08-2022 10:55pm
    Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Just starting this thread rather than clogging up the general chat one.

    New game from Half Mermaid, the studio led by Sam Barlow (Her Story, Telling Lies). It's also an FMV game, based around scrubbing through dozens of disparate clips to figure out what's afoot. But this time the footage includes full scenes (or at least shots) from three 'lost' films starring an actress who mysteriously disappeared.

    First impressions are good here: the production values are a huge and welcome step up from Barlow's previous games, and the central gameplay concept of clicking on elements of images to be brought to 'matching' scenes works wonderfully. A big thing about any media that hopes to emulate a specific era is to get the texture right... and while this certainly isn't absolutely perfect in that regard, it makes a damn good shot at it creating faux 60s, 70s and 90s films that look and feel era-appropriate.

    Without going too much into spoilers there's more going on here than the surface-level clips, and I've had a few... surprises while scrubbing through the footage.

    Anyway, on Xbox, PC, GamePass and 'coming soon' (date apparently TBC after a last-minute delay) to mobile via Netflix.


  • I put 2 hours in tonight. It's got the same issues as previous games. It's grand for 2 hours and then it gets tedious. Production values are way up and the writing is great but the game loop is tedious after a point like the other games. The tutorial as to how or why you should be playing the game is equally awful vs previous games, it's like the game assumes you've seen the trailers which is just wrong.

    I'm back in the same videos and I have no idea or direction as to what video I need to be in and what I need to click on to progress things.

    Not sure how it works on PC with a keyboard with the scenes you need to rewind slowly to the see the f'd up stuff, on console the controller vibrates.

  • Registered Users Posts: 848 ✭✭✭one armed dwarf

    Mixed on it myself, I spent about 5 hours last night and saw credits, however I don't think I'm close to complete I just happened to trigger the scenes which lead into credits. I'm sort of frustrated by it and not sure where it lands with me. It's very hard to talk about without spoiling stuff

    The reason I find it frustrating is there's some stuff it does really well and other stuff I'm not convinced about. The stuff it does really well is it's absolutely an impressive production that's all about fetishising the movie-making form and how it changes over time and between genres. You've got your sexy Chinatown style neo-noir, some weird Lynchian style thriller. It's very self-reflexive, looking through the films at itself sort of thing. That stuff is either going to hit with your or it won't and it will depend on your own movie interests and history with some of the stuff it seems to evoke, I think. 

    It's just the interaction with it all leaves me feeling a bit weird. The three movies basically are a series of linear narratives broken up into a bunch of hyperlinks to each other. There's an obvious thematic link with some of the stuff they're going for and as you slowly thread all the fragments together some of the stuff will lock into your brain as being significant. It's a game about the act of viewing stuff obsessively over and over and unlocking these links. You don't just watch something once and leave it alone, you rewind that **** back and check again to notice stuff that maybe escaped your attention earlier. But the gameplay mechanics for establishing said links seem completely random to me. I ran into one which seemed very deliberate and hinted at a big secret behind one of the BTS events for one of the films, but I went back later and found out that the way the two scenes were laid out was completely coincidental. The thing I deduced was accurate but the act of the game showing it to me seemed like pure RNG. But I guess that could also be the point? 

    I don't know. It's sort of challenging stuff, I think it getting a 10 from Edge and being on Gamepass means it will get put in the crosshairs of lots of 'games should only be fun' type of folk, but I do think the interactive part of the narrative struggles a bit to relay the clear ambition of this piece. I think my opinion on it will change a lot though when I find the rest of the clips and have actually 'beaten' it and can go back and study the footage more freely, rather than doing this weird whack-a-mole type thing unlocking it all

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Just on how the mechanics work on PC...

    the soundtrack highlights the moments of particular interest, along with the visual distortions. My controller is also lying on top of my PC and goes nuts too :P The control explanation at the start is unnecessarily confusing, but I do have to admit I love the analog feeling a mechanical keyboard gives when scrubbing through the footage - feels a lot like sitting at a desk working through the footage on a machine.

  • Something a colleague mentioned to me earlier I didn't pick up on was she noticed there are different kinds of vibrations for hidden stuff. The long hard ones you rewind at normal speed and the shorter gentler one that I missed you need to use frame back for?

    I'll try it later but I think you just hold frame back and you see the hidden images clearly.


    OK did it there mind blown. I'll spoiler what I did when rewinding a certain video

    In Minsky 17A you hold the frame back button to reveal the subverted footage but at the end of it you get another vibration something hidden with in whats already hidden, holding the frame back button shows an eye but you can't see it clearly. Here you need to rewind at slow speed with the analogue stick until it jams and then hold A

    Post edited by [Deleted User] on

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Rolled credits last night... well, I should've rolled credits but the game froze on the last close-up while the credits music played in the background. Sort of apt for the cursed vibe the game shoots for :P

    I'll go back and dig out more as there's a lot of BTS I don't have clear in my head yet, but I've got a general gist of things now and have a good grasp on the three films.

    I really liked the ending, such that it is: it's creepy and handled extremely well visually and design-wise. The self-immolation scene is bleak but extraordinarily well realised. Like the best parts of the game, it feels like you're stumbling across a piece of genuinely cursed footage.

    There was definitely a point near the end where I had a big pool of footage and wasn't quite sure what I needed to do to trigger the end, leading to 30-60 mins of very general clicking around to try to find the right link. But that was also around the point the timeline started coming together and I got a better grasp of events and stories.

    I'll hold off on adding any more until I've had a chance to dig that bit deeper into the footage pool, but it's definitely Barlow's most accomplished FMV game to date... and by quite a margin, honestly, even if it does run into some of the same pitfalls as the others.

  • Advertisement

  • I'm not finished yet myself but that's fair to say even at the point I'm at that it's his best by some way. Some great performances too by the cast.

    Couple of minor things bugging me though, wigs on the lead actress are terrible and having people smoke who quite clearly don't in real life.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    I think the terrible wig works in Two of Everything given the particular heightened vibe that one's aiming for, but yeah the Minsky one is definitely 'off'.

  • Registered Users Posts: 848 ✭✭✭one armed dwarf

    The wigs reminded me of Mulholland Drive.

    I saw most of the clips now (maybe 10 left I can't find) but I still have to say I find the discovery mechanic so frustrating that it ruined my appreciation of the story, which I was quite enjoying. You can't do this kind of fragmented narrative in linear media, but I wish they did a better job at implementing the UI to interrogate the story. I mention this again not to be repetitive but that the issue only becomes more pronounced as you get to grasp more and more elements of what's going on, making things increasingly difficult

    I'm being cynical here but I feel like Edge et all gave this a 10 moreso to encourage more of this kind of game to get made, rather than because the game is a 10/10 game. Not to say I wouldn't mind more games like this, especially if the investigative elements is more refined and in-sync with the narrative ambitions of the overall piece, which I think in Immortality's case it isn't (I hear Her Story's better in this regard)

  • This is much easier to navigate compared to Her Story. In that you have to type search queries iirc to discover the videos.

  • There's another cue I'm missing to get the hidden footage? The controller doesn't vibrate and I don't notice anything that hints at there being something there Only reason I noticed at all was I was rewinding to get to a certain part of a video. So I guess that means I should have been rewinding everything???

  • Advertisement

  • Ambrosio 62A is hilarious "**** you monk!!!!" 🤣

  • Hit credits earlier and ended up really enjoying it. For anyone wondering how to end it, you need to do the requirements for the what happened to achievements and unlock about 50% of the clips in each movie.

    I think I understand what was going on but I still only know because of the trailer that

    Marisa was missing and I haven't seen something to explain the 30 year gap in time between movies 100%

    I get Eve mentions waking up at different periods, I've only 50% of the hidden stuff seen but I've not had anything in the clips to suggest when Marisa went missing.

    It's funny the individual movies have their own IMDB page which I thought was cool. I thought Manon Gage was excellent and the stand out performance but the standard really high from everyone involved.

    I was sceptical about this as I posted about in the general thread re: the Edge review but glad to be wrong, my minor gripes with it aside it's infinitely better than Sam's previous games.

    I wonder will there be an option to watch the scenes all the way through in order patched in ? Feels like there should be.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Re your spoiler...

    There's a final clip associated with Minsky which partially explains the big gap - it's a close-up of Marissa so best to get there by match-cutting her face until you find it.

    But it's the subverted footage that really gets into it. It's all quite complicated and open to interpretation, but based on what I've seen (all the clips but not all the subverted stuff) and reading a few theories online...

    The key thing is that 'The One' and 'The Other One' can take on different forms - Marissa is one of 'The One's' forms, perhaps based on a young woman who was alive during WW1. The two eventually get into a row over the worth of their filmmaking endeavour, leading to 'The Other One's' murder of Carl Goodman. The One then decides to live the next few decades in the form of John Durick (after killing the 'real' version) before deciding to bring back Marissa. However, I think what happens then is that the toll of being both John and Marissa leads to both identities starting to fall apart - you see this when Marissa starts collapsing and bleeding on set in some of the final clips of 2OE.

    There's a good, spoiler-filled thread on the Steam forum where users are putting together the plot (titled 'So... what's your version of the story?'). But in many ways it's perhaps most effective as a mood piece and playful deconstruction of form that makes it most rewarding, rather than the literal events of the plot (still interesting, but very complex and messy).

  • Registered Users Posts: 848 ✭✭✭one armed dwarf

    I think a lot of that stuff should be engaged with on the same level as

    the black lodge in Twin Peaks. There's a figurative significance behind the literal happenings of all these demons and the shapes they take.

    By the end the takeaway is that these creatures have achieved immortality and mastery of 4d space by taking over and destroying people's lives involved in the making of these films. Anyone can view the deaths of Carl or Marissa and become inhabited by them.

    FWIW, a writer from Lost Highway worked on this. That has a whole thing where the plot is a closed loop and characters are each other's doppelgangers. Gets borderline recursive at points.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Yep, I think ultimately the title of the game is the biggest hint towards what's going on: these beings manipulating the world around them to achieve immortality in new ways. On the whole it's a sort of horror-movie-tinged reflection on the nature of filmmaking and storytelling.

    The plot of 2OE in all its hacky, soap-opera excess is even actively hinting at the audience about what's going on with its doppleganger and multiple identities carry-on.

    On the point of recursion, it's wild how deep some of the clips go - four or five layers of subversion to get through, rewinding and fast-forwarding in alteration to get there. One of the talkshow clips keeps going deeper, to the point where the quality of the image and recording itself starts to collapse.

    Post edited by johnny_ultimate on

  • I don't think it's mentioned anywhere in the game but on IMDB

    The immortal characters are listed as Adam and Eve, so I was conscious of that when listening to them. Eve especially talks a lot about religious events.

  • Registered Users Posts: 29,192 ✭✭✭✭Zero-Cool

    I was just looking at Netflix Games and noticed this was added on 4th November. It's 105mb download in android which is suspect but gonna give it a lash and see how it plays. Just 500+ downloads so far..

    Edit: went to play it, requires an 11.5gb download :D It's gonna be a struggle to free up 10gbs with no storage card.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 28,667 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate

    Nothing frustrates me more than massive in-game downloads. It's rife on mobile, but Microsoft Flight Simulator on PC might be the worst offender - a download of >100GB, but you need to have the app open the whole time.