The Great Perhaps Review

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The Great Perhaps, developed by Caligari Games and published by Daedalic Entertainment is both an adventure and story game. Set in a post apocalyptic world, an astronaut who survives above the stars seeks answers to the world’s demise. He comes across this lantern that lets him move between past and present, learning of what truly ended the world.

Gameplay

Story

The story in The Great Perhaps is probably my favorite part. The game has an in-depth story that is full of mystery and heartbreak. As the game starts out, we find the astronaut named Kosmos has been asleep for 100 years after the world is destroyed by I believe, a natural disaster. Accompanied by an AI named L9 he goes back to the planet in search of what happened. I won’t spoil the ending here, but I will put it in a spoiler tab if you are so inclined to know.

Plot Spoilers

While Kosmos is on the planet he goes in search of a ‘black box’ to try to find out what happened. Right as he acquires it near the end, the black monster comes to attack him and take the lantern away. The ending of the game is Kosmos admitting he will stop at nothing to save his family and the world, for ‘This Great Perhaps’. It turned out to be a much more emotional game than what I was expecting, and I enjoyed every minute of it. Below is the final scene of the game before it fades to credits.

Time Travel

One thing that caught my attention about The Great Perhaps was the utilization of time travel. It’s neatly done, and works on limited time. There’s no way to stay in the past indefinitely, as a clock ticks down until it automatically sends you to the present. This type of mechanic I’ve seen with Dishonored 2 and Titanfall 2 and loved it. That there was my hook for The Great Perhaps. 

The lantern is key to time travel, an shows up very early in the game, along with this giant monster. The link between the two is unclear but the AI companion L9 reads it as a human life-form. When using this lantern there were a few specific instances where I found it unforgiving. If the lantern automatically sends you back and you’re in a block you’ll get splinched and die. Same is if you send yourself back and you’re over a ditch. Clearly it was meant to be an obstacle in the game, but I found it to hinder my casual play-style.

Aside from the time travel mechanic, The Great Perhaps has interesting interactable objects that help you progress throughout the story. There are mini ‘missions’ as I call them that are necessary for progression. An example would be trading a balloon to a girl for a key. But to get the balloon you have to bring a clown helium and alcohol. It becomes a bit investigative to find these objects and figure out where they need to go. The only difficulty with this is the trial and error. Make a mistake or die an unforgiving death and you have to restart the level.

Puzzles

In addition to the mini missions are sporadic puzzles throughout the game. There aren’t a ton of them, but they do pop up occasionally as you progress. They remind of the hacking mechanism in Bioshock, in rotating pieces and making the machine light up.

Puzzle Spoilers

Graphics

I really enjoyed the art-style provided in this 2D video game. It had depth in specific parts, and although they re-used character models there was a ton of variance. The environmental design in this game was extraordinarily beautiful. In nearly every scene there were two versions: past and present. The buildings were either run-down or in beautiful glory. This means that in theory they created two separate environments for the game no matter where you were, and I think that is amazing.

Soundtrack & Voice Acting

The Great Perhaps has some very fitting ambiance music. It adds a bit of terror to the game, like when you’re being chased by the big monster. The voice acting is a bit dry, and the AI L9 has a very sarcastic sense of humor. I would say in-comparison to the story and graphics the sound is probably lacking.

Bugs

When playing I found only one major bug that eventually fixed itself. While playing if you pick up an object there was a chance for Kosmos’ legs to stay still and he’d do a type of 2D t-pose. This did not hinder the gameplay in any fashion, and it sorted itself out when you put the object down. Throughout my 2 hour playtime, I would say it happened twice.

Thoughtful Moments

Throughout The Great Perhaps there are some very thought-provoking moments that occur. They are mostly brought on by AI L9, and give the game more depth of philosophical questioning. There are distinct instances that hit me emotionally about how devastating the outcome to the world is, and how it directly affects Kosmos.

Funny Moments

While The Great Perhaps is filled with devastation and upset, the game also has some more funnier moments that I enjoyed. They lightened up the game, and provided a bit of relief against the sadness.

Final Thoughts

The Great Perhaps was definitely a trip of a game. It’s bleak in future, and has some mystery and also heartbreak. I think for such a thought provoking game to be played within 2 hours it’s very good. The plot is very fulfilling and leads open options for a potential sequel to Kosmos actually completing his mission in saving the world. I know I’ll personally be looking out for Kosmos’ ‘Great Perhaps’ to become a reality in another game.

The Great Perhaps is available on Steam for $9.99. At the price point and the amount of playtime and benefits I would say pick it up if you’re interested!

Good

  • Great Story
  • Good Art Theme
  • AI Was Funny and Entertaining
  • Beautiful Environments
  • Potential for Sequel

Bad

  • One Visual Bug
  • Ambiance and Voice Acting Lacking
7.8

Good

Story - 9.5
Characters - 8.2
Soundtrack - 6.7
Voice Acting - 7.9
Game Mechanics - 8
Graphics - 9
Replayability - 5
An avid gamer, journalist, literary reviewer, and lover of all things Marvel; wrapped in a colorful hair-do.
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