Beneath a Steel Sky was Revolution Software’s second game, a point and click adventure set in a dystopian future. Revolution Software are known more for their Broken Sword series, but before that franchise came to be, they made Lure of the Temptress, and Beneath a Steel Sky. Lure of the Temptress was okay, but Beneath a Steel is possibly the best game that Revolution made, people even consider it better than the Broken Sword series!
So, what’s so special about this game anyway? Not only do I love this game, but it’s a Point and Click Adventure game that has an amazing plot and story line. In short, the story goes that the world has been devastated by nuclear war, and there are only a handful of areas where people can survive. The young Robert loses his family in a helicopter crash, where he was the only survivor. Adopted by a group of people that live in “The Gap”, an area of waste land that isn’t radiated, he’s taught to hunt for himself and live off the land. Later in his adulthood, a group of people from a nearby city are looking for Robert and escort him away from the The Gap and treated as a criminal for a crime you’re not aware of, but it turns out that the chopper you’re in crashes too, and again you survive, leg it out of crash site, and make it into a Robot manufacturing plant as seen above. Not only that, but later on in the game you have a vendetta to make with a Mr. Reich, as he dropped a nuclear bomb on The Gap, killing your adopted family. And you discover the secrets behind Robert’s real blood relatives and how they were a part of a system called LINC.
The art was done by Dave Gibbons, the artist who drew the illustrations for the Watchmen comic book series; these are noticeable in the game’s cutscenes. The iOS version of Beneath a Steel Sky Remastered features more cutscenes that were drawn by Dave Gibbons that gives the game it’s high contrast comic book feel, even more so than it’s original PC and Amiga versions.
The CD-ROM version of the game features voice acting from the Royal Shakespeare Company, which is funny and most of the voice acting sound like British xenophobes attempting to sound American and/or Australian, however, the voice actor for Robert Foster, actual sounds genuine for his role, and doesn’t sound like a fool pulling off a silly accent.
The gameplay is pretty much like an other point and click adventure affair where you solve puzzles and problems to progress. However in this game you can get killed in different ways, and you have to start over from a save point. If you, or anyone else have played and beat the game, you know what I mean with the picture above about what happens next when Robert moves over to the next screen on the right! The game has a few awesome moments where you say to yourself “Did that REALLY happen!?”
I just really love this adventure game to the point where I can clearly say it’s the best adventure game. And with a new renaissance in adventure games with the likes of TellTale releasing new Sam and Max games, it really is worth getting hold of this game. Not only that, but Beneath a Steel Sky on the PC was made into Freeware/Abandonware in 2003 to show off SCUMMVM, a Virtual Machine for SCUMM based games, Beneath a Steel Sky used SCUMM as it’s engine. So you can legally download SCUMMVM and Beneath a Steel Sky for the nice price of free! However, if you wish to support Revoltuion, there’s the Remastered Edition of the game on iOS for £1.99.
Oh but that’s not all, back in 2004, Revolution announced that they were thinking of developing for Beneath a Steel Sky. However they ended up making two sequels for the Broken Sword Series: Sleeping Dragon and Angel of Darkness. BUT… Recently with Revolution’s Kickstarter campaign for Broken Sword 5, they announced that if they earned one million dollars from the fans, they will work on Beneath a Steel Sky 2! However the Kickstarter ended at $820000, but according to Eurogamer in September, Revolution are going ahead with Beneath a Steel Sky 2, despite not hitting the 1 million dollar target. Hey! I’m pumped! And so should you dear readers!
Before I end this blog, all I have to say is…