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Choices are a matter of life and death in Dyscourse

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Choices are a matter of life and death in Dyscourse Choices are a matter of life and death in Dyscourse

Choices are a matter of life and death in Dyscourse





Owlchemy Labs' survival adventure game Dyscourse has hit the digi-shelves, and it's a game all about choices. Whereas a Telltale Games style adventure might simply tell you that so-and-so will remember how you chose, though, in Dyscourse you get to see the results of your choices in fairly short order. And many of those choices end in death for one or more party members.
In Dyscourse, the player wakes up in the wreckage of a plane crash on a deserted island. After falling in with a group of other survivors, the player's choices about what to do and who to send out on what tasks have direct, easily understandable consequences for the group's survival and rescue in the coming days.

Each day comes in phases. The first thing that happens is that the characters wake up, discuss the current situation, and come up with two possibilities for what to do next. The player's choices influence who will do what, and the group splits up to pursue both goals. The player then gets to play out the task that they and whoever is with them are on, making choices that affect its outcome. Hopefully no one dies. After that, the characters regroup at camp and discuss how the day's events went for both groups, giving the player a chance to find out how the other group fared. If there's food to ration and/or eat, that gets taken care of. Finally, right before bed, the player gets a chance to talk to some or all of the other characters.

The impact of player choices on the flow of the game can't really be understated. If the player does something that gets someone injured, they'll be less capable the next day, less able to contribute to the survival of all. Dallying to do something unimportant in an emergency can directly result in the death of another character. Enacting changes on the environment can make one thing possible at the cost of creating a new danger. If you send the wrong people out to scavenge for something, they'll come back with nothing and a day's work will have been wasted. Every death that occurs can be traced back to either one really bad choice the player made or multiple choices the player made that came together in a bad way.
Talking and listening to the characters ends up being one of the most important aspects of the game. Each character has their own distinct personalities, a fact that becomes apparent within the first few minutes of meeting them. Those personalities can provide clues as to how likely the characters are to succeed at different tasks. Some of the characters may also have personal items that are useful in given situations, but if you don't talk to the characters enough, you might not find out they have them. My favorite moment in my first playthrough of the game is directly related to one NPC's personal item, in fact, and not just because his using it saved my life.

On that note, although the game is about a dire situation with starvation and injury and death, there are still humorous moments. It's not a complete downer ...
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Source of news: indie games
Source of publication: 31-03-2015 16:00
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