We learned how to protect ourselves
But we knew we couldn't survive anyway...
And so eerily begins The Fog Fall, the newly released point-and-click adventure from Pastel Games and Mateusz Skutnik, creator of favorites such as the Submachine series, Covert Front and Daymare Town. You are an unnamed, unknown survivor of a nuclear holocaust, eking out a meager existence with your family in a bomb shelter-like house, struggling against the inevitable knowledge of your own impending mortality. A lonely life, really, sadly mundane. Until, one night, you wake up with a strange feeling in your belly, and look out to see the house surrounded by fog....
This is a fantastically atmospheric game. Mateusz has proven himself to be a master at creating wonderfully creepy, claustrophobic environments that lend themselves perfectly to the deeply enigmatic nature of his stories; with Mateusz, finishing a game is generally less of an "escape" and more of an entry into a new cage. Maybe more than any of his other creations, The Fog Fall, with its references to the Cuban Missile Crisis and the 1950's gone awry, meshes beautifully with Mateusz's style. It is a vision of an alternate outcome of a frightening, uncertain time; even more than half a century later it, to be frank, gives me the jibblies.
Play the entire Fog Fall series:
Analysis: The Fog Fall plays much like Mateusz's previous offerings; same graphical style, same spare soundtrack and ambient noise, same largely code- and machine-based puzzles. Basically, it feels almost exactly like playing another Submachine. And hey, who am I to complain about that? I'm a fan of the tried-and-true Murtaugh style, and if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Also like the Submachine series, however, I did feel at times that The Fog Fall requires unintuitive leaps of logic (though, judging by how quickly some JIG readers have pulled together walkthroughs, that might be a personal failing). I'm all for thinking outside of the box, but a few of the game's puzzles had me using the unfortunate "try everything with everything until something happens" method. Although, now that I think about it, perhaps a certain amount of frustration is integral to the full Murtaugh experience? He wants us to empathize with the games' protagonists!
Despite any minor criticisms, The Fog Fall is another excellent, good-looking, entertaining production. With story by Karol Konwerski, the artwork of Maciej Palka, music by Brian Wohlgemuth, and programming by the game master himself, Mateusz Skutnik, all the pieces are in place for yet another fantastic escape game experience, as well as an entirely new series of games not to be missed.
Escape the, um, apocalypse: