Enter a dark tale in our preview of Yesterday

Enter a dark tale in our preview of Yesterday

When you bring up Pendulo Studios to a fellow adventure gamer they think warm bright colours, insane characters and humorous dialogue, their Runaway series has defined them in the point-and-click circles. Thankfully it is also clear that Pendulo know what they are doing, so when Yesterday was announced as a dark and brooding tale, no one batted an eyelid, because no matter what tale they tell, you know an enjoyable and challenging adventure game will be the result from the veteran Spanish developers.

Set in New York City, beggars are mysteriously disappearing off the streets, only to be found burnt alive. At the same time, seemingly unrelated people are finding Y-shaped scars form in the palms of their hands. With the police caring less, the events come to the attention of Henry White, a young, rich heir who is dedicated to a charitable organisation, and his friend Cooper who bring it upon themselves to investigate the disappearances, all the while the enigmatic John Yesterday is dragged into the story after his memory is wiped and all he remembers is attempting to commit suicide in Paris.

In our preview we were able to control two of Yesterday’s main characters; Henry White and Samuel Cooper two young, up and coming volunteers for a non-governmental organisation that helps homeless people. Leaving the game's title character John Yesterday shrouded in a cloud of mystery, after all, his lost memories will form a vital piece of the puzzle surrounding the murders going on in the game.

The audio and music is a veritable treat in Yesterday, and whilst the preview build was missing voice actors, nothing will prepare you for the hauntingly brilliant and innocuous track that will send a chill down your spine when you hear it, Pendulo Studios have definitely struck a chord with the rich and moody subject of the game, and their atmospheric sound design only helps amplify the many twists and turns you will encounter.

" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0" webkitAllowFullScreen mozallowfullscreen allowFullScreen>rom the short section we were able to play, Yesterday has proved that it is very straightforward and no-nonsense, there is little random guesswork required, so some may be a little disappointed without a proper obscure challenge, others that hold the story higher than any puzzling aspects may see the game as an intuitive masterpiece, this tale after all wants to have you hooked on the edge of your seat, not searching for a walkthrough.

Many adventure gamers will know from the days of Discworld that some games can be a little counterintuitive, and whilst Yesterday does not appear to subscribe to the 90s style of combination puzzles, if you do get a little stuck every now and again, you’re covered as Yesterday has both a handy and spoiler-free hint system as well as the essential hotspot key found often in the current generation of point and clicks.

Pendulo Studios are possibly most well known for their unique art style; a distinctive mix of cartoony characters and pronounced shadows make them spottable from a mile off, and obviously Yesterday sticks to this same aesthetic. Suddenly sinister sections of the game become hauntingly vivid and ominous which can only be down to the almost contradictory combination of the image and what is coming to pass before our eyes.

Our preview ends on a brilliant twist, showing that everything in Yesterday is not as it seems, and yet this is just the beginning; the game is promised to be rife with twists and turns to compliment its 4 different endings, and if what we have seen from the preview is anything to go by, those that love a good story are going to be more than pleased when Yesterday is released.

Yesterday looks to be Pendulo Studios’ most adventurous title yet; and from our preview alone it looks like it’s dark and haunting story line may well stick with you for many years to come, we cannot wait to see more of it in March 2012.