Afterfall: Insanity Review
Posted by Pat Gibbons (RedCoatGunman), Jan 09, 2012 17:09
Afterfall: Insanity takes place in a dystopian, alternate future, in which the cold war has lead to a nuclear holocaust. The Polish government constructed a series of autonomous, underground shelters that allowed some of the population to survive the cataclysm which would later be referred to as “Day Zero”. The player takes control of Dr. Albert Tokaj (toe-K-EYE), a psychiatrist residing in the shelter designated “Glory”. Dr. Tokaj has been researching “Confinement Syndrome”, a mental condition afflicting most of Glory’s residents. During his investigation, Tokaj encounters a number of people who have been driven to violence by the effects of the syndrome. He eventually discovers a plot to destroy the shelter, but is implicated himself before he can reveal it. Now Tokaj must escape to the surface and bring the real saboteur to justice.
The first problem that I have with Afterfall is that it’s very poorly paced. The first plot hook doesn’t come until about two hours in, and it takes another two hours for the surface to be mentioned. Before then it seems like your only goal is to wander through various corridors without getting torn apart by crazed auto mechanics wielding farming implements. It also takes forever to get to each objective since there always seems to be some obstacle or broken piece of machinery that the player needs to either fix or circumnavigate in order to advance. It makes me believe that Dr. Tokaj missed his calling as an electrical engineer. He sure as hell isn’t doing so well as a shrink, what with all the crazies around.
All of this is illustrated in the game’s opening sequence. The player begins in Tokaj’s office, where the good doctor has just finished a therapy session with one of his patients. It takes a good five minutes before the player has the ability to open the door to the hallway. After a long walk and a few cinematics, Tokaj enters “The Bar” just in time to see an announcement in which the Colonel in charge of Glory declares him a traitor and orders his immediate arrest. After a few fight sequences and some more cinematics, Tokaj makes his way into a dark maintenance corridor. Eventually, he exits into a large, gothic style cathedral, where the Colonel is waiting for him. Tokaj is about to be killed by a group of parishioners when he wakes up in his office across from his angry patient. Once again, he has fallen asleep during one of his appointments, and everything that the player experienced prior to this point was all a dream. I can honestly say that this pissed me off. I had been playing this game for a good twenty minutes, and even died once, and everything that I accomplished amounted to jack squat. I get that this was supposed to show that Tokaj himself was suffering from Confinement Syndrome; but it ultimately proved to be a big waste of my time. Any good film critic will tell you that the only thing the “it was all a dream” device produces is an infuriated audience.
Rating: 2.7, votes: 4