Getting lost is one thing. Getting lost in London is another. Getting lost under London while losing your sight is… well…. not good in the slightest.
Another Sight tells the story of a girl named Kit, who falls under the bustling city of Victorian London, losing her eyesight in the process. With the help of a mysterious fluffy cat named Hodge, Kit must relearn how to see the world around her in order to survive and discover truths about herself, her family and a mysterious power source both Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla are determined to possess.
Inspired by Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere, Another Sight lets the player experience a world that’s here, but not. A dark world filled with exotic flora, illuminating rocks and crystals, lingering architecture from civilizations now lost and vast possibilities for a new way of life. A world we must reconfigure our senses to not only find but love and appreciate.
Using a two-character model for gameplay, Another Sight gives you control over both Kit and Hodge. Each have their own strengths and realistic abilities that when used together make solving puzzles feel more like teamwork and less like work. Kit will be dependant on Hodge for showing her around and distracting guards, while Hodge can’t always get his furry self over pits or turn levers designed for those pesky human hands. Another Sight makes excellent use for tandem exploration. However, for longer walks, an optional joint-walk would have been helpful (Just like in My Memory of Us), as there were times when switching between Kit and Hodge more than a few times to cover some distance was a bit more repetitive than ideal.
A delight for history nerds:
All NPCs are historical figures. You will meet Claude Debussy, Claude Monet, Helena Blavatsky, and fully enjoy an epic struggle between Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla. Kit will need to keep her wits about her, though, as the further she ventures, sane words will mean less and abstract thoughts will prevail as truths. Now, if only I could have found a hookah-smoking caterpillar!
Another Sight is fully an environmental puzzle game. Both Kit and Hodge are useful, so we’re not dealing with an escort mission style playthrough. While most actions will be self-explanatory, you will start to forget Kit is disabled and needs assistance to progress, as we typically don’t get characters less than perfect. She uses sound and movement to “see” the objects around her. Having Hodge run past her will let her run to catch up as she will see the trail of catclaw noises in his wake, otherwise Kit will walk slowly and deliberately.
The same applies for jumping: A smart person will not jump over an open space without knowing where they can land, and the same applies to Kit. There were times I would keep falling and get upset with the possibility I was not hitting my keys with the proper timing. Then I remembered Kit couldn’t see, and I had to find ways of helping her out, be it aiming water dripping flowers over oversized leaves, or making Hodge meow to illuminate a radius around him. Stepping back and realizing the challenges are not necessarily hard, but require patience and understanding will give the player an experience very few games have dared to explore.
As if the seductive visuals and alluring story weren’t enough, the best part about Another Sight is the creators’ representation of the struggles that come with blindness while integrating aspects of a lesser-known sensory phenomenon called Synesthesia. Certain sounds will show what’s going on in the world for Kit, but that also means certain sounds will create a specific and consistent colour mapping. Early in the game, Kit will announce that a sound was “very red, err loud” (quote is not 100% accurate), and finds herself confused about how her brain processed her senses. Rat squeaks will show as green, Hodge’s sounds will be a pleasant pale pink, etc. As someone with a form of Synesthesia, I was overjoyed at these subtleties the creators added.
When playing as Kit, the world is dark and uneasy. Not necessarily scary, but unknown and restricted. This exposure to similar barriers faced by the blind community is enlightening in a fresh way and gives the player the tools to be more empathetic and patient.
Drawing inspirations from Victorian England, true to life historical figures, and a bit of Neil Gaiman’s magic, Another Sight is a fantastically imagined piece of art. Breathtaking scenery combined with well-designed puzzles and distinctive functionality stands Another Sight apart from your typical indie title. So, if you’re looking for a completely new and refreshing game, join Kit and Hodge as they break boundaries and limitations in their pursuit of the truth, and you will not be disappointed.