Version Reviewed: 1.2
Device Reviewed On: iPad Mini 2
Replay Value Rating:
But does the tale translate?
As far as adventure games go, Syberia packs in a lot of the requisite elements: puzzle-solving, travel, intrigue, and a relatively reasonable storyline. Our protagonist is an attorney called Kate Walker, who is tasked with closing the sale of a French toy factory onsite in the fictional village of Valadilène. Unfortunately the aged toy factory owner dies just before the sale can be formally completed, and some information she divulges just prior to her passing away sets the events outlined in the script in motion. The game sticks to its PC roots by keeping the initial timeline to the year 2002. We get worldwide travel too, with the game's title hinting at one locale.
The opening sequence defines a lot of the gameplay as Kate arrives, observes, explores, interacts, and collects. The gameplay is touch-driven, and the developer uses visual cues like direction tags and magnifying glasses to help players along. In many respects it works like many mystery/hidden object hybrids do in that one becomes adept at checking everything out, and then checking it again. The logic is decently applied, such that some actions cannot be taken until a specific object is found and utilized.
Thankfully, Kate can collect items, and use them later. The developer does an equitable job of reducing red herrings, but not reducing the game to a silly touch-n-go. The dialogue is mostly crisp and detail-oriented, and can be cycled through quickly if desired.
The artwork is a huge element in and of itself, and again, fans of the initial desktop iteration won't be disappointed. It's a creatively foreboding affair, with a huge emphasis on steampunk in the robots - sorry, "automatons" - that make up a huge part of the story. The period work feels right, and the static background mostly complements the saga itself.
Altogether, Syberia a fun romp. It'll sucks folks in, and if anything it's a story of human nature and heroically looking beyond the immediate. It's a fantastic concept that's evergreen on mobile: a potential gem.