Echoes: The Microchip Review


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11 June 2022
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A series with potential

The idea of an audio mystery is alluring. Our ears can be easily fooled with sounds that are similar, and might be rearranged by a context of later clues. Sadly that’s not quite what we’re doing here, instead, this is more of an ‘order of events’ kind of game.

The players will lay out a bunch of the item cards (broken into two chapters by item cards, the second set put aside until later) and thicker chapter cards. One of the players downloads the app, and zaps a card with the camera – which will in turn play some audio.

The audio is decent, we’re usually dropped in in medias res, and our goal is to work out what’s going on in the context of other cards. Or rather, which order each of the events happens. Generally there’s a hint or a clue in one of the audio snippets that will lead you directly to the next piece. Once you’re ready with a chapter you can enter it into the app in the right order, and if correct, put them aside. Later you’ll line up all of the chapters to complete the puzzle and receive an epilogue of the entire story.

The app itself is great, with none of the fiddliness of other digitally integrated games. The writing is… alright, a little hokey and sometimes a little misplaced.

It’s a valiant attempt at something interesting, but the fact that the game is ultimately just about your ability to track the order of events means it’s only worth exploring if you’re really into the idea of an audio mystery. A series with potential, however.

Christopher John Eggett

PLAY IT? MAYBE

Designer: Dave Neale & Matthew Dunstan

Publisher: Ravensburger

Time: 45 minutes

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Players: 1-6

Ages: 14+

Price: £10

 

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