There have been a few teases here and there of Old Skies on Twitter from Wadjet Eye Games, but having played the demo just before Steam Next Fest, I can quite honestly say that this is a game I’m massively excited about.
As Fia Quinn, a time agent for the ChronoZen Agency, you are a chaperone to wealthy clients, travelling through seven different eras of history. That’s right; we’re looking at a time-travelling adventure where it’s essential that you follow the rules, or else you may affect the timeline.
Time travelling is a fascinating subject, but overly complicated. Accompanying Fia is Nozzo, represented as a hologram whom she can talk to through subvocalization – a way of talking without using one’s mouth. At any point, you can contact him through the UI for guidance/tips on what to do next. He’ll verify the timeline importance of a person/object/action – i.e. will changing the past significantly affect the future?
Regarding the Old Skies demo, you have to accompany Dr Joe Anderson to the Silver Flare ‘restaurant’, New York, in 2024. Upon ‘jumping’ into the setting, you find yourselves on the wrong side of a locked door in a construction yard. Fia manages to get out, and you then have to look for an item to unlock the door for Joe.
Besides looking around and interacting with the beautiful scenery by Ben Chandler, Fia has access to a historical archive. From here, you can search for clues, look for historical facts, and in the case of the demo, find the solution to the first puzzle. It’s essentially a database that opens up through progress so you can find out about your surroundings, as well as your client and their connections.
Before long, the idyllic trip soon goes sour, and Fia has to handle an emergency. The change in Old Skies’ tempo was excellent, and looking for clues to track the assailant was brilliant. Apart from the interactive inventory (Fia has a multi-tool on par with the one in Unforeseen Incidents), there’s the option to input passwords with the keyboard. I hope these mechanics feature in the full game, much like the recent Chinatown Detective Agency.
After completing the Old Skies demo, I immediately jumped back in to enable the commentary (and bloopers!). This is like a DVD commentary from the developers and was present in (my GOTY) Strangeland and Primordia. To have these options in a demo was bloody marvellous, and I highly recommend you experience them should you download this during Steam Next Fest. Why wouldn’t you?!
Due to writing news and reviews, I don’t often get to relish in the titles I’d like to play for myself (typically taking my time on them). If that were the case, I’d be diving into the Wadjet Eye Games catalogue to ‘catch up’. They do feel like the total package, and I can’t recommend them enough. For that reason, Old Skies goes to the top of my most-wanted list.