SIDEKICK HIGH

Genre:   Adventure

Developer:    CMNN CLRS

Released:   May 2017

 

 

by oldmariner

 

Sidekick High Developer: CMMN CLRS [Common Colors]

Free Game: Entry for the 2017 Adventure Jam 

As stated in my review of Diary of a Roadie, I seldom if ever examine free games. But this offer from the same developer appeared to pique my interest. Common Colors is the name of the Belgian-German-based indie game development team who presented yet another short and inventive point and click Adventure Game.

Mechanics

Requirements listed on the download site are minimal. Delivered in a zipped file, once expanded it is a self-executing program with a small footprint on your hard drive. There is no installation required. You simply click on the .exe file and the game begins. There are no saves. This may be an issue for some of you because when reloading the game, you have the same three choices offered as the first time you opened the game. No choice of Continue or Load Save is offered. You get the same three choices when returning those are:

Start New Game,

Show Credits or

Quit.

Upon completion of the intro, another box appears providing user information:  

Left Click to Interact,

Right Click to look,

Mouse Wheel + i key to open and close inventory,

Hold the space key to show item hot spots and

Esc Key to quit.

Having to start over each time can be off-putting, though you can quickly click through speech and move to your previous exit point in short order. A clock is ticking on the upper right corner of the screen, counting down from one hour to zero. You have one hour to complete the game or you lose. The smooth-running game is fully point and click.

The Story

Two small groups of students with random super powers are selected to compete for placement in a private high school. Locked in separate rooms, each group is told to discover a way out. The first to do so is accepted into the exclusive school. The losing group will be put to death. The two teams plot to work together to defeat this evil scheme and save both groups.

Game Play

The graphics are exceptionally sharp and crisp with pixel hunting at a minimum. There is a higher quality of voice acting than expected for a free game. Character discussions are displayed on the screen in text form as well as the optional question choices offered in the conversation tree where you are able to get answers to move the game along. All puzzles are inventory based with many requiring you to play two different characters, one from each team. The inventory is located at the bottom of the screen upon activation when you follow the step described in the mechanics section above. The entire game is played in the two rooms switching from one to the other as you change characters.

Puzzles are not overly difficult but challenge you to think outside the box. Yes there are a number of items to pick up, some require mixing and matching inside the inventory screen. The game is short. Length is highly dependent upon your ability to figure out game given clues rather quickly to save both teams.

Summary

For a short game I found this to be a bit of fun in spite of having to start over if you are forced to exit before you complete your hour. In spite of the running clock I did not feel rushed. As previously stated, upon launch you have but three choices, Start New Game, Show Credits or Quit. There is no "Load Save" or "Return to Game" ability that I could locate. This design should be corrected by allowing a player to return where he or she left off. In addition to surprisingly good voice acting, a mellow, unobtrusive background musical score underlines the scenes as you play through the game.  For the cost, (Free) you cannot go wrong. You can find it at Game Jolt. Sidekick High is a one hour diversion that is sure to entertain.

 

GameBoomers Review Guidelines

June 2017

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