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Review: Her Story

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  • Review: Her Story

    H2O Legendary takes a look at a unique indie game.


    Her story is an interesting new addition to the gaming world. I kept seeing positive headlines all over gaming websites about how amazing this game was. After all of the 10/10 review headlines, I decided I'd bite and give it a try. I'm not one to knock a bold attempt at a new style of gameplay, but I have been let down before. When I sat down for my first run of Her Story, all I knew was that you had to solve a crime using video footage. I didn't want to read any other reviews until I had a chance to play for myself, because given that information and the low price of $5.99, I could see that it was probably going to be a quick playthrough. I also didn't want to be swayed by the hype.

    Her Story takes on a category all its own in the gaming world. It's a narrative, but it also takes on the role of a puzzle game, and crime drama, doing all of this through the use of real life video footage. When you first start the game you get the background noise of an old computer booting up and the sound of old fluorescent lights buzzing over your head to give you the feeling that you're sitting in an old dingy room looking over cold case files. The backdrop of the games menu screen is in fact an old computer screen with a few icons on the desktop you can tinker with.



    The desktop supplies you with a couple of readme files to help you get started on your way to solving the case. These files will give you a backstory as to what you must do to accomplish the tasks required in the game. Basically through the process of converting VHS recordings to computerized files, the "Y2K" issue happened and everything got screwed up. It is up to you to sift through these files pertaining to a certain murder investigation. You also have access to the database checker which will show you how many videos you have unlocked and in what sequence. If you want to rewatch these videos in order, that is up to you to log because the game does not let you re*watch them in sequential order. You are also given a clock icon which from what I have seen is worthless as well as a rubbish bin which contains a hack.info file and a mini game you can tinker around with for a couple achievements. You will end up spending a bulk of your time in the game in the CornerStone program sifting through videos. Seems simple enough, right?

    Those videos are where this game begins to really shine and take form as an indie sensation. The CornerStone program starts you out with the word murder already typed into the search bar, by clicking search you are automatically started with the first 4 videos of the game. In these videos, actress and musician Viva Seifert plays the role of the wife whose husband has been murdered. Using these 4 videos, it is up to you to come up with keywords to start to unravel the story and solve the murder. Or at least that’s what I thought I was supposed to do.



    You see, Her Story isn't really about solving the murder. After about 2 hours of watching, searching and coming up with more keywords, I pretty well knew who killed whom, how and whythey did it even. Even with the murder solved, I found myself continuing to watch and search for more and more videos because I wanted to know more details about the case. This is the brilliant part of Her Story that I had been looking for from the beginning. the reason I believe that the game has received so many positive headlines. It was never about solving the case, it was about telling her story - ironically enough. I might have solved the case, but her story was not complete. I had not found all of the videos so I was not done with my own personal mission.

    The story being told in a non*-linear format along with the wonderful acting skills of Seifert continue to leave you wanting more pieces of the puzzle. You really can get to know and picture the characters in your head even though you will only ever see Seifert on camera. This game is truly unlike anything I have ever played before. I must give Sam Barlow credit for creating something truly different, that I’m sure will have a positive impact on how games are created in the future. At $5.99 on Steam and $4.99 on iOS, Her Story is a definite must play if you are looking for a creative and immersive game that won’t take you an extremely long time to finish. You shouldn't be disappointed by what this game has to offer. If you still aren't convinced, check out the many other positive reviews this game has received and try it out for yourself.

    This review was written by H2O Legendary, a member of the PMS|H2O Editorial Team.
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    Last edited by H2O Snake; 12-05-2015, 10:11 PM.

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