Review: A New Beginning – Final Cut for PC

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Title: A New Beginning – Final Cut
Price: $9.99
System: Windows PC
Release Date: December 11, 2012
Publisher (Developer): Lace Mamba (Daedalic Entertainment)
ESRB Rating: “Teen” for Violence, Language and Tobacco Use

Plenty of games have dealt with the apocalypse. Most of games have involved nuclear bombs, asteroids colliding with Earth and, of course, zombies. German publisher and developer, Daedalic Entertainment decided to go with an apocalypse caused by, even what scientists think to be the most likely cause to our demise, climate change. In their graphic novel stylized game, A New Beginning – Final Cut, it’s up to you to prevent this future from happening.

An Apocalyptic story with an all too real scenario

You take the role of two characters in A New Beginning – Final Cut. The first is Bent Svennson, a washed up, retired scientist who was deeply involved with finding an alternative fuel source to help deal with the growing climate problems. He discovers one with the use of a blue-green algae, but his work becomes abandoned after he becomes obsessed over it, even losing his family in the process.

The second is Fay, a woman from the distant future where climate change has devastated the planet and the human race is only a couple weeks away from total annihilation from a solar flare. She’s made her way back in time to convince Bent his blue-green algae is a viable energy source, even providing energy for her time capsule. With Bent convinced, the two now need to prevent a disaster in the present day in order to save the future.

Using standard point and click adventure game mechanics, you’ll move through A New Beginning – Final Cut‘s story by talking to NPC’s and collecting items that will help you move forward. It isn’t innovating gameplay, but it’s fun to play.

Poor voice acting, saved by challenging gameplay and an overall solid story

I’ll have to give it to A New Beginning – Final Cut for making an apocalyptic event more realistic. While we may all fear a nuclear holocaust or an asteroid striking Earth, they aren’t nearly as likely or frightening as climate change. It hits closer to home knowing that we’re in the midst of it currently. The beautifully rendered backgrounds explode with vibrant colors and draw your eye to the screen with graphic novel

The build up and tension of the story lays in knowing the outcome should Fay and Bent fail in convincing the people of the present. The dialogue in A New Beginning – Final Cut could create a dialogue amongst friends about how to deal with such a controversial situation. The in-game debates occurring between characters seem one sided at times, but the fate of mankind makes you want to move the story forward.

My one gripe with the story is presentation. I’m not sure if it’s due to translation, but the acting is very poor at times. Some lines are beautifully acted out, while others sound so painfully mechanical, you would think Daedalic punched the dialogue into a Microsoft Excel program and let it ride. Seriously, it sounds that robotic at times. For a game with a good plot and dialogue, the voice acting can pull you right out of it.

I enjoyed the point and click mechanics of A New Beginning – Final Cut‘s gameplay. It reminded me of Myst, and got me feeling nostalgic. Constructing items can be challenging at times with the amount of time and ingenuity that goes into solving them. When you do solve them it is incredibly satisfying, but the mechanics aren’t exactly out there in regards to ingenuity.

At the same time though, the difficulty level can be absolutely frustrating. Many of A New Beginning – Final Cut‘s creations come from constant trial and error, and sometimes that error level goes beyond reasonable. While I appreciated the challenge, it seemed unreasonable to take me an hour to figure out who is supposed to get the cup of coffee.

Are you an environmentalist? You will be when you’re done this game.

In the end A New Beginning – Final Cut takes a spin on the typically terrifying, Mad Max-esque, wasteland in most games and takes it in a slightly more realistic direction. While the poor voice acting got in the way of immersing me into the story at times, the scenario Daedalic has set forth still intrigued me enough to push forward through the game. Mixed with strong visuals and challenging puzzles many players will be practicing every healthy environmental habit when you walk away from this intriguing, apocalyptic game.

Site [A New Beginning – Final Cut]

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