Use light and darkness to overcome obstacles in the story-driven ‘Even The Ocean’Filed inside: Games
Imagine going to work one day and having your entire life flipped upside down. This is exactly what happens in Even the Ocean, a new story-driven release from developer Analgesic Productions. You’ll take control of Aliph, a humble power plant technician from Whiteforge City. Aliph is tasked with performing routine maintenance on the city’s power plant when a mysterious event occurs. The incident causes turmoil throughout the city and awakens a strange force. It’s up to you to make use of Aliph’s newfound powers to undo the damage and save the city.
At first glance, Even the Ocean looks a lot like other story-driven 2D platformers. It’s reminiscent of titles like Braid, Fez, and Ori and the Blind Forest. You’ll spend a lot of time scampering over platforms and scaling walls, all while solving puzzles and progressing the game’s rich storyline. To do so, you’ll need to make use of a unique mechanic. Aliph begins her journey with access to a special bar, capable of storing light and dark energies. Collecting light energies will allow you to leap higher into the air, while collecting dark energy will increase your horizontal movement speed. To make matters even more challenging, these energies will work against one another. If you’re saturated with light energy you’ll be able to bounce to like a grasshopper, but you’ll move like a slug. Likewise, having too much dark energy will have you careening like a bullet, but jumping like a stone. It’s up to you to correctly balance your bar and create a harmony of elements to overcome each obstacle.
This is part of the puzzle aspect to Even the Ocean, and there are certain areas that may have you scratching your head. Developers wanted to craft an adventure that offered up unique platforming gameplay while still maintaining a good story. That being said, it was also important to developers that Even the Ocean be more accessible than the traditional platforming experience. This led the group to offer up truly customizable experience. If puzzles aren’t your forte, you can bypass them and immerse yourself completely within the story. If the story isn’t exciting you, you have the freedom to focus entirely on gameplay mechanics. This will work wonders in giving access to individuals who aren’t as experienced with games but still want to see the story unfold. This is a very considerate move by the development team and it would be interesting to see if more indie companies take this type of approach in the near future.
From a visual standpoint, Even the Ocean features heavy retro influences. The environments are very creative, and beautifully crafted. You’ll span lush forests, countrysides, and an array of futuristic areas. It reminds me quite a bit of Braid, and features a lot of pixel art that is reminiscent of NES and Super NES classics. The art style is very enjoyable, and a lot of detail work went into each location. Unfortunately, there can be times in which the story seems a little jammed together, but with so much tale to tell it’s understandable.
On top of all this eye candy, you’ll find a very enthralling soundtrack. All of the effects and musical scores for Even the Ocean are very well done. These docile tones help to create an atmosphere that is very relaxing. The journey through Even the Ocean may be exciting and mind bending, but this is the perfect release to help you unwind after a long day.
You can grab Even the Ocean right now on Steam, The Humble Store, Itch.io, or GOG for $14.99. If you’re interested in getting more information regarding this release, be sure to check out the dedicated website here. You can also follow the developer, Analgesic Productions, on Twitter and Facebook.