Play it now – Winter Voices Prologue: Avalanche

Play it now!This is sort of awkward. I don’t want to tell you about this game.

That’s because I don’t want to spoil it for you.

Let’s pull some adjectives out of the bag. It’s refreshing, surprising, haunting and surreal.

Got that? Good. Play it now!

For the rest of you who are still here, I’m wondering quite how to describe this without giving you the wrong impression.

I could say that this is a turn-based adventure/role-playing game with a tactical combat battle-system from indie French developers Beyond The Pillars.

That’s true, I suppose. A bit. I have, in a single stroke, almost certainly given you the wrong impression about the game. Think back on any other game that resembles that description – and this is not like it.

This is the story of a woman, battling her past, facing the present and uncertain about the future.

From the official blurb:

A drama is unfolding in a tiny village buried in snow, lost in the depths of a Three-River Principality valley. A sudden death, a now-hostile home, new sensory capacities rising like a storm and the departure towards the unknown, the only means to escape besides death, has become inevitable…The newly-orphaned heroine is pushed to leave her father’s village by the voices of her unconscious mind. The long journey to find answers will lead you through many events to overcome anger, sadness, pain and fear and finally unveil what is whispered by the voices of Winter.

Winter Voices is a solo role playing game on PC purchased by downloading 7 episodes. Each new episode constitutes a decisive narrative step towards resolving the plot.

Image from the title-screen

The game is actually written in Adobe AIR, and doesn’t seem to be particularly demanding on the hardware. Audio is nice, voice acting is (unusually) well-done, and the art appears to be hand-drawn and is plenty good-looking.

The character and skill system is unique, reflecting what’s most important: Who your character is, on the inside.

The translation into English is actually quite good, with only a smattering of typographical errors, and some places where the voiced narrative doesn’t quite match the text, but it isn’t terribly significant.

The game is a measly 5 US Dollars on Steam for Windows at the moment. Though this is just the first part, I strongly recommend it.

3 thoughts on “Play it now – Winter Voices Prologue: Avalanche”

  1. Downloading it was made something of a roundabout exercise insofar as you can’t just download it, you must go through something called “Steam.” Not only that, you must apparently use that same “Steam” to play it.

    I jumped through all the hoops of setting up a Steam account, paying, and downloading Winter Voices but haven’t yet played it. Loved the videos of the designers discussing it and I’m pleased I didn’t have to shell out more that $US4.99 to have a taste of what appears to be just a prologue.

    If it’s anything even close to that cute Flash Game from Amanita Designs called Machinarium I’ll be well pleased.

  2. For everyone cautious about the other comment, Steam is a very well known gaming platform, and has a giant user community. Don’t let Nakie’s comment scare you from buying this game, I’m on my way to download it now.

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