Surface: The Noise She Couldn’t Make

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Score: 6.0
2012

This game was another Adventure Gamers casual community playthrough title, and it was well worth the play, though its ending really watered down the otherwise promising title. The Noise She Couldn’t Make is a story about an unconscious girl found with a bloody knife. She doesn’t wake up, so the hospital hires a psychic (the player) to travel into her mind. That’s kind of a silly start but the whole concept of entering someone’s mind is intriguing and it works well in this game.

The scenes in our Jane Doe’s head are beautiful, and all the puzzles make sense in the setting. The game has a nice variety of puzzles – some of them are even rather challenging for a casual game like this. For more casual players there’s always the easier settings and built in hints. There’s only a handful of hidden object scenes and they’re luckily rather easy and even quite suitable with the surroundings. The gameplay is one of the strongest aspects of this game. There’s even a map that allows fast travel and tracks progression.

The people are FMV actors cut into the drawn surroundings. Like in a lot of FMV games, the actors tend to overact and there’s sometimes a rather cheesy feeling about the whole thing, but I always had a soft spot for that anyway. The dark character haunting the patient’s mind is also wonderfully evil-queen-like.

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Solving nice puzzles in beautiful surroundings and unraveling the things that bother Jane Doe’s mind is quite fun really. But in the end we get a section outside of the patient’s mind and the gameplay doesn’t work that well in there. And the final revelations are rather tame. The game had potential to be much more disturbing and touching.

I still consider this one a fun play, and definitely a solid casual game. I have not played the other titles in the Surface series, but as far as I call tell, these games are standalone.

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