The Great Perhaps
Developer: Caligari Games
Publisher: Drageus Games
Genre: Adventure, Puzzle
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 12
Release Date: 10/07/2020
A code was provided for review purposes.
Journey Into The Unknown
The Great Perhaps throws up some interesting scenarios and as it released during the summer period, during peak “lockdown”, it did feel somewhat strange to think of the parallels between the world you’re playing through and the one we live in.
Playing as an astronaut you come across a strange artefact; a lantern. The lantern enables you to see glimpses of the past but also lets you switch back to the present time, you’re tasked with finding out what has happened to the post apocalyptic world you’re living through in the hope you can save the planet. In terms of the story it’s fairly slim on the explanation front and it’s clear the developers wanted to focus more on the gameplay element. You have an internal guide who will help you out on your journey as you travel through the different areas and as you get used to the lantern and it’s function you’ll become more accustomed to solving the games puzzles.
A Light To The Past
You won’t see many faces in the present time period but if you switch back to the past, you may meet others who lived there before the great disaster hit. There are a variety of puzzles that you’ll be solving during your 2-3 hour play through and it’s great to try and figure out which time period you’ll need to be focused on in order to progress. I found it to be a really great mechanic as it keeps the different areas you travel through fresh and exciting.
I never found myself in the position where I was stuck for what to do next; the puzzles are mainly trading items between different characters or using them on different parts of the scenery to progress. You could say the game’s more of a walking simulator in some aspects. The art style is simplistic with its approach, opting for 2D hand drawn visuals, but it does work nicely and the music is incredibly subtle.
The controls are easy to master with very little to remember, you’re able to walk, jump and pick up or push and pull items so there is no combat aspect in The Great Perhaps. There are definitely moments of peril but the game has you approaching those moments in less conventional manner. There are achievements that you pick up along the way but most of these are gained through the linear progress, so they’re better labelled as milestones given they are pretty difficult not to achieve.
The Great Perhaps…Not?
Although I did enjoy my time with The Great Perhaps there were a few things which didn’t flow for me. There are times when switching between the present and the past reveal environmental pitfalls, however you have limited time in which to stay in the past so the game will trigger automatically back to the present at sometimes inconvenient points. This can cause some accidental and unfair deaths especially in new areas. The jumping mechanic is a little clunky as well coupled with the voice acting which features some very questionable accents, it left me feeling like there were a few rough edges that needed smoothing.
If you’re looking for a short, narrative adventure to wile away a couple of hours of your day The Great Perhaps will definitely fill that void. It’s an interesting story and the art style really fits the aesthetic of the post apocalyptic world they’ve created. However with a lack of explanation on the story front this did let me down a little and it was hard to determine the exact direction and cause of things within the game. The smaller platforming elements were let down by clunky handling as well. This one’s certainly more of a rough gem.
Rapid Reviews Rating
You can purchase The Great Perhaps from the Nintendo eShop
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.