Dead Synchronicity: Tomorrow Comes Today could be a gem waiting to be discovered. In fact, based on what the developers at Fictiorama Studios have laid out, I think the Dead Synchronicity has thepotential to be a real classic in the Point and Click Adventure Genre. Now, granted, I haven’t played the game yet, so I can’t say this for certain.
Oh wait. Yes, I have (in demo form).
First things first, we need to talk about the setting. The developers are 100% correct when they say that story drives an adventure game like this. Artistic style and music are phenomenally important to taking any narrative experience to the next level, but I’d argue the two main narrative elements: Character and Setting. are ultimately the end all be all of any story. Dead Synchronicity is a distopian post-apocalypse in which time itself could end at any minute, and boy have they nailed that setting:
A terrible pandemic is turning all of humanity into the Dissolved – the sick whose deliria provide them with supernatural cognitive powers… but also steer them towards a gruesome death.
The root of this illness seems to be the Great Wave, an inexplicable chain of natural disasters that destroyed all energy sources and communications and plunged the world into a chaos ruthlessly controlled by both the authorities and the army alike.
So the player will have to help Michael, a man with no past, recover his identity and decode the events that brought the world to the edge of collapse. Because, if Michael doesn’t hurry, he won’t be able to avoid the impending moment of dead synchronicity… when Time itself dissolves.
The characters, setting and story all seem very solid when it comes to Dead Synchronicity. It’s a brilliant idea to interweave time disruption, natural disasters, zombie-plagues(?), and totalitarian regimes, and it all seems to have been handled quite well in my opinion. Dystopian narrative can often come of as campy or satirical, but there’s none of that in this story.
There are however, a few technical problems. While playing the demo, I had to wait minutes for characters to walk across rooms, cross abandoned lots, or just go toward that random pile of trash I wanted Michael to search through. The game is in alpha, so this isn’t anything unexpected, but it does mean that I had to look at a lot of landscapes and backdrops and listen to a lot of music.
Which was a very good thing.
Dead Synchronicity is gorgeous, and the music is phenomenal. They may not be the core of a narrative but my god has Fictiorama Studios found a style and honed it. They clearly know they’ve got winning artwork and musical direction and are making good use of it.
From the very beginning we wanted to make a 2D game, as we love the suggestive abstraction 2D exudes. For the characters, we’ve used a style we think reflects all the shades we wanted to express: expressionist, sharp, a bit tribal… and tough.
For the locations, we’re using a rusty look that matches the ruined society (both physically and morally speaking) that the Great Wave has left behind….
…Two of the members of our team belong to the alternative rock band Kovalski. Yes, we know we’re lucky to have some musicians at Fictiorama! And of course we want to take advantage of it.
In fact, the music and sound design are essential for us, as we think they are fundamental for a great game experience. Unlike other companies that hire external freelancers to make the music and sound effects when their games are nearly done… the music of Dead Synchronicity: Tomorrow comes Today is being composed, as the game progresses, by our own team, along with the art, the programming, and the story. This way, art, plot and music fit each other like a glove.
Our influences: orchestral rock of the 70’s and Italian giallo’s soundtracks.
So, maybe Dead Synchronicity has a few rough edges at this point, but point-and-click adventures are about story. The hints and peaks at what could be coming our way with Dead Synchronicity ‘s dark narrative are incredibly exciting. There’s a very solid experience waiting to be unfolded and I for one cannot wait to see it come to life.
Dead Synchronicity: Tomorrow Comes Today is currently fundraising on Kickstarter. At time of writing, it has raised $29,174 of its $45,000 goal, with 4 days left to fund raise.