SILENT FOOTSTEPS

 

Genre:   Adventure  

Developer & Publisher:   Frostlind Games             

Released:    August 2017            

Requirements (minimum):

  • OS: Windows 98, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10
  • Processor: Pentium 1 GHz or higher
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: video card with 128 MB video memory
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Storage: 1 GB hard drive space

 

 

By flotsam

 

Silent Footsteps

Frostlind Games

This isn't a Carol Reed game but it could be. It's a self-confessed homage to them, having been inspired by them. I didn't know that when I started playing, but my first impressions were immediately of those games. Which isn't a criticism, only an observation, and a good one at that given the intent of the maker.

Silent Footsteps has you stepping out as Rebecca Carlson, whose childhood friend recently died in what looked like an accident. Rebecca is mentioned in the will, and receives keys to her friend's apartment and a note saying "follow in my footsteps". She does just that, returning to her old home town to try and see what the secretive note is all about.

If you have played any Carol Reed games you will know what to expect. There are the same real world environments, the same static screens, all played from a point and click first person perspective. It wasn't apparent inside the apartment (or perhaps I wasn't paying enough attention) but once outside there are also tinges of that same smudgy watercolour backgrounds that Carol wanders through. Nothing moves in the environments, including the few other characters, but it doesn't matter. The detail provides the environmental life, albeit relatively solitary.

The further connections and references to Carol Reed and some other adventure game things you can discover for yourself. The maker is clearly an adventure fan.

When you converse with another character, you hear their voice but not your own, your dialogue being written. There aren't dialogue options, rather you just click through your conversation. You do get to hear Rebecca though as she reflects to herself. While the game is set in Sweden, all the dialogue is in English. It's all very simple and straightforward.

Your cursor is a largish pink circle, that when you move it around the screen will change to indicate a direction you can move or turn, something that can be examined, or an object you can interact with. Press the space bar if you want to highlight the hotspots in each screen. There are generally only a few, and they are generous in size, so you may not need the space bar very often. It does pay though to look in all available directions, because you can miss things should you fail to do so. One direction is "back", which will take you back to where you just came from, which avoids having to turn all the way around, although I did smirk a little imagining Rebecca walking backwards through her town.

Silent Footsteps is a gentle game, and so is the puzzling. Which again is not a value judgment, just an observation. Finding and using things, piecing together or working out some codes or sequences, combining inventory items; I was occasionally delayed but never really stuck. My biggest bewilderment came from a lack of direction at one point, which was overcome by accessing the hint journal. The first level might say something like "explore the cemetery", which indicates there is more to do there so that is where you should go. The next level will often be a complete solve, so use with discretion.

The inventory ribbon is top of screen; left click to use an item, and right click to examine. If you left click an item you can then hover it over other items, and if it can be combined it will be outlined in pink. Ditto in the game world if the item is the right item to use in that spot. When you exit a location a map will become available, enabling you to choose your next destination. As destinations become available, the map will pop-up and flash so you are aware there is somewhere new to visit.

Right clicking at any time in the game world brings up the menu, where you can save at will, tweak a few volume settings, and turn subtitles on or off. There is some ambient sound, and a varied soundtrack.

Silent Footsteps provided me with about 3 hours of engaging playtime, and what it does it does well. It is essentially a one woman production, and well done to her. If you like Carol, you will like Rebecca, and I wouldn't be surprised to see her again.

 

I played on:

OS: Windows 10, 64 Bit

Processor: Intel i7-6700 4GHz

RAM: 32GB GDDR5

Video card: AMD Radeon RX 470 8192MB

 

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September 2017

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