By: Ted Chow
Republique Remastered is a third-person stealth puzzler that can be reminiscent of games such as Metal Gear Solid with all that sneaking around and being a ninja. It could also be the fact that David Hayter and Jennifer Hale are voice actors for some of the characters, which I have to say, is an awesome dynamic combo! If you enjoy a good story with the episodic feel of The Walking Dead, but more action, conspiracies and puzzle solving, then I highly recommend you take a look at Republique Remastered; there’s more to it than meets the eye.
Unlike most third-person games where the camera is behind your character, Republique Remastered takes an interesting step forward by taking that out of the equation. Instead, you hack into the surveillance cameras that are prevalent across Republique and play the game through the lens of Big Brother.
You also have the power of foresight as you can get ahead of your protagonist to scout for enemy patrols and lay out a plan to tackle the puzzles and challenges. If there was one complaint it would be some noticeable blinds spots with the camera system as trying to come in and out of doorways or swapping between cameras can shift your view rather oddly.
The conformist views and oppressive atmosphere lingering in Republique Remastered is made possible with the careful forethought of level design and a great set of environmental props to sell the mood. It also helps that the textures are well done, and the facial expressions on Hope are animated to make her a believable yet fragile character. With a good number of graphical options in the settings menu, you can adjust to your heart’s content.
The voice acting and ambience portrayed here is also some of the best I’ve heard this year by far. Then again, I figure that was sort of a given when you have the voice actors of Snake and Shepard in the same game to offer some passionate eargasms.
In Republique Remastered you play as a cyber-hacker in your mission to help Hope, the main heroine, through her escape from confinement. The story eventually deepens as you try to unravel who you are and what conspiracies are being schemed by the residence of Republique.
Through episodic storytelling akin to titles such as TellTale’s The Walking Dead, Republique Remastered offers an engrossing tale of government censorship and conformity that I could not stop indulging upon. Using the power of technology to control the flow of information and to recalibrate the minds of our youth, the story’s premise and underlying messages will definitely keep you captivated.
As the cyber-hacker, you have access to the OMNI program that gives you a multitude of abilities to hack your way through challenges in order to help Hope. These abilities are found through the daemon server/save point rooms in which you need currency in the form of data and contraband to acquire.
Some abilities, such as tapping phone calls or emails, don’t use your battery resource, while others such as pulling alarms or creating distractions do. Battery life for the phone is recharged by visiting the daemon server rooms or through one-time battery packs. Aside from abilities, Hope will also have access to pepper spray, tasers and sleeping mines to incapacitate her pursuers.
Much of the game revolves around hiding in the shadows and sneaking from objective to objective. You will be studying enemy patrol paths, weaknesses and other exploitable features in order to complete your missions. Thankfully, your ability to hack ahead to cameras in the next room plays a big part in maneuvering around undetected.
A friendly NPC by the name of Cooper will also be text messaging you with helpful hints and mission goals if you ever get lost from the main path. Detours and backtracking are always an option as you may wish to collect achievement trophies, lore books and other goodies along the way.
Puzzles also play a key role in Republique Remastered as you interact with the environment in some fashion to move onto the next story plot. The puzzles are clever enough for intuitive minds to find satisfaction in conquering them, but not so daunting as to stop individuals from proceeding without external help from Google or game walkthroughs. Sadly, there weren’t that many, but the ones available were put in with a lot of thought and care from the developers, so kudos to them!
Republique Remastered is a captivating mystery story that treads the path of conspiracies and other social political agendas. It is food for thought as we walk similar paths to those the game’s narrative wishes to explore — even though the story is fictitious, the underlying messages can hit close to home.
While there were a few things that could have been expanded upon such as enemy variety, puzzles and weapons, the main dish was more than satisfying. And with the ending of the third episode, and two more to go, I can’t wait to see how things unfold for Hope and all the other characters in this contender for the year’s best mystery story.