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Review of Ultreïa

Review of Ultreïa

The classic story of a robot out for revenge.

Ultreïa is a science fiction point-and-click adventure game in which you play a robot named Nymo on a pilgrimage to Ultreïa, a satellite of whatever rock you’re native to, to learn the secrets of life and death.

The most obvious draw for this game is the graphics, which are very nice in 2.5D, but even better are the cutscenes which are 3D animations. A few of them suffer slightly from what I assume are compression issues (they look noisy to me, anyway; possibly done to keep game size smaller or for rendering reasons), but aside from that they add a lot to the feel of the game. The whole game has a cool post-apocalyptic future feel which makes you want to adopt that robot you’re always seeing salvaging spare parts from behind the computer store, the one that was stranded in a time-travel accident from the year 2525.

At its base, Ultreïa is a fairly standard point-and-click, with an inventory and click-on-the-active stuff to select an action. That modern control scheme is easy to learn and stays out of the player’s way, and the game offers a super-brief tutorial to teach it for new players. That’s a solid choice for any adventure.

There are a few rough edges. At least a couple inventory items don’t do anything (that I found, anyway), which violates the principle of Chekov’s gun—if you introduce a rubber chicken in the first act, it must have a use by the conclusion. Significant items are too easily acquired, which feels more like the need for Chekov’s gun control: if an item is useful, it should be behind at least one obstacle. Also, the quick-travel map for the city, Mount St-Troy, could use labels and perhaps larger thumbnails.

The overall story arc is great, built as a combination of noir and Eastern philosophy. While most of the character interactions are fleeting, it fits the story well enough to be forgiven. The puzzles are mostly logical, and none felt too hard. There’s even a nice (optional) card game you can play.

It took me about four hours to complete the game, including all achievements. I enjoyed my time, and if you like the robotic, post-apocalyptic aesthetic and adventure games, take a look.


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