ferry;;sadhonker;;adams;;yesterday origins;;point 'n click;;adventure;;puzzle;;pendulo;;immortal;;microids Ferry "Sadhonker" Adams

YESTERDAY ORIGINS

By Ferry "Sadhonker" Adams on November 14, 2016

As Freddy Mercury once asked: "Who wants to live forever?" Well, in Yesterday Origins, John Yesterday doesn't have a problem with living forever, so much as he has with losing his memory every time he dies. Confused? Sit back and let me explain!

Yesterday Origins is a 3D point 'n click adventure, developed by Spanish developers Pendulo Studios, who you might know from the Runaway series. The game, developed by Pendulo and published by Microids (a subsidiary of Anuman Interactive), tells the story of our protagonist, John Yesterday. John seems like a normal chap, but has one trait we normal humans don't have... immortality!


You see, some 500 years ago, John was incarcerated and sentenced to be tortured and killed by the Spanish Inquisition for being the son of Satan (now there is something you won't be accused of every day!). John manages to escape with the help of a mysterious monk and is forced to undergo an Alchemic ritual that will make him immortal. Every time he dies, he is brought back to life at exactly the age he was when he died for the very first time. Sounds like a sweet deal, doesn't it? There's only one catch... every time he dies, John completely loses his memory of past events. Now, together with the help of his girlfriend and business partner, Pauline Petit.

Pauline, like John, is also an immortal. She does have one advantage though; when she comes back to life, she actually remembers everything that happened up till the point she died. Pauline is an experienced hacker, a trait that does come in handy from time to time. Together, our pair of heroes set out on a quest that will lead them on a journey acorss the globe, in search of an artifact that will help them to discover why John keeps losing his memories and rectify the oversight in the strange ritual that made him who and what he is today. Fueled by a burning desire to uncover the secrets of his past, John must try to solve the mystery of what is wrong with him.

What I like about the characters, is that they both have a different perspective on things. This is most noticeable in those portions of the game where the player can switch between Pauline and John, giving you a unique insight into the characters thought and opinions. Especially because the characters are well-written, it's very easy to relate to them. And, because their not total bastards, you might even grow fond of them. The dark humor in Yesterday Origins is another thing that I personally like about the game. It might not always be the humor for everyone out there, but then again, what humor is? Heck, I like it a lot, and I'm sure that there are a lot of people out there that would agree with me!


Being a point 'n click adventure, Yesterday Origins has the player explore the environment and have conversations with other characters in order to gather information needed to solve a puzzle at hand. What I especially like about the core puzzle mechanics of the game, is that it's not as straight forward as one might expect from a game in this genre. Usually, you pick up an item, use it on the environment to either receive a new item or to solve a puzzle. Alternatively, you can combine items to create other items and use these to solve puzzles. Yesterday Origins also does this, but with a twist. Developer Pendulo Studios incorporated an extra dimension to the puzzle-solving as we know it: the question of "Why?". So yes, you can still combine items, but from time to time, the game will ask you why the hell you would want to combine or use these items in the first place. This is where the conversations and cutscenes come in.

For instance: say you want to try and combine item A with item B. In some cases, John will do this without questioning, but more often than not, he will need a reason for doing something. This might sound elaborate, but it works like a charm and adds an extra dimension to the genre. So, back to our items. When you try to combine thingamabob A with doohickey B, you may get the aforementioned "Why?" question. When this happens, the game lets you select pieces of information that you've gathered by reading clues or talking to characters. If you combine the right clue with the right combination of items, you'll solve that piece of the puzzle and be on your merry, immortal way. What this mechanic actually does, is think before you start clicking your mouse or hammering away at your controller like a raving madman with a button-fixation. Secondly, it makes you appreciate conversations and cutscenes much more, because they're not just there for show anymore. Miss a conversation or a certain action, and you will be stuck for quite some time.


The comic-like art style of Yesterday Origin works really well in this game and enhances the experience greatly. Don't get me wrong, I'm still a sucker for 2D graphics, but if 3D graphics are done well, and they are in this game, you won't hear me complain! The soundtrack and voice acting are more than decent and manage to enhance the overall experience of this mystical journey. The characters are well-written and never superfluous. The overall story is one of mystery, excitement, love, hate and the urge of one man to uncover his past and manages to immerse the player into its depths. Yesterday Origins' puzzles are intricately constructed without being impossible to solve. And, in my humble opinion, that is exactly what a good puzzle should be like: hard but not impossible.

Overall, Yesterday Origins is a very good point 'n click game that I would recommend everyone who is a fan of the genre. Its intricate design, beautiful environments, cool characters and immersive story make this a game well worth playing! So, what do you reckon; are you up to the task of unraveling John's murky past and help him discover what happened to him? If so, I would advise you to give Yesterday Origins a go. If you like a good and challenging point 'n click game, you will definitely not be disappointed!


available on:

YESTERDAY ORIGINS
Pendulo Studios & Microids
November 10, 2016