Review: Beyond Blue (Steam)

Beyond Blue is a single-player narrative adventure that takes you deep into our planet’s beating blue heart. Explore the awesome wonder and unbounded mystery that exists within the world’s ocean.

Pros:

  • Controller support.
  • 9917mb download size.
  • Invert axis and sensitivity sliders.
  • Graphics-fullscreen, resolution, v-sync, frame rate, graphics quality preset, AA, motion blur, ambient occlusion, and bloom.
  • Subtitles-on/off.
  • Steam achievements.
  • Really nice detailed graphics.
  • Tutorial at the start.
  • Scanner-scan and document the fish.
  • Buoys-they have a sound identifier on them that allows you to scan, mark, and listen to species of fish which in turn gives you mission objectives.
  • Well voiced characters.
  • Science log-details all the information on scanned species.
  • When scanning you get a clear indication of progress and a brief idea of what the species is and what they are doing.
  • Free to play how you want.
  • Solid easy to use controls with the scanner having full 360 control.
  • Scanning uses a simple system-if the circle on them is dotted then you are too far away, a hollow circle means they are not scanned and a filled-in circle means they are scanned.
  • Very chilled out soundtrack.
  • In-game cutscenes.
  • You learn without realizing it.
  • Submarine-main hub to play music, rewatch cutscenes, advance the story with phone calls.
  • Multiple choice interactions with your team.
  • Regions-can replays them once you fi Ish the story in them and they become Freeplay.
  • Zoom scan-lock onto a fish/whale etc and scan them in more depth.
  • Missions pop up on the screen.
  • Insights-unlock mini-documentaries of original footage and interviews from the BBC archives.

Cons:

  • Mouse cursor stays on screen even when using the controller.
  • Mouse cursor comes back to front and center after each cutscene/mission.
  • Little replay value.
  • You have to have the scanner up all the time to check if you have scanned the fish.
  • Short game, only a couple of hours.
  • Little variation, its just scanning fish and laying down trackers.
  • Slow pace.

  • 8/10
    Graphics - 8/10
  • 7/10
    Sound - 7/10
  • 7/10
    Accessibility - 7/10
  • 7/10
    Length - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Fun Factor - 8/10
7.4/10

Summary

To call Beyond Blue a game is kinda pushing it, it’s more of an interactive experience, there is no “game” part, you swim under the ocean and document fish with a scanner and follow a family of Sperm whales as they give birth to a young un and you follow the path they take. As experiences go it is rather chilled and relaxing, the soothing sounds of the ocean are really good, the controls impressed me with how solid they were but also how easy it was to do all the actions. You can clock the game on a few hours and aside from maybe achievement chasing you have no real need to go back but you can replay regions in a free play fashion. Overall I found it satisfying at the time and it didn’t really outstay it’s welcome but it has no progression like new gear or leveling and the story is spaced out so far it drags but as a one and done it’s perfectly fine and a fine example of underwater exploration.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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