Developer: Capricia Productions
Platform(s): Windows PC (Steam)
Publisher: All in! Games
Of Bird and Cage pitches itself as a story-driven music game that aptly describes the game. The game follows the protagonist Gitta Barbot and her life of misery, trauma and survival through this horrible world. The game is a first player adventure game with quick-time events all using the metal soundtrack to tell the story and ultimately becomes integrated into all game events.
The game is a first-person adventure game with the majority of the gameplay elements being in the first person; however parts of the storytelling are from a 3rd person view. The game consists of sandboxed areas where you are given cues on what to do, the majority of these game events require you to solve a puzzle, collect items or fight your way out. The pace of the game which is aided by the soundtrack can be fairly quick and you find yourself in a rush to complete the level your time runs out. To break up the gameplay, you will have quick-time events appear throughout the narrative. I found the puzzle elements that were timed to be quick and the controls are clunky too which made them feel even trickier than they should have.
The graphics could be better, it felt like a last generation game, the environments and characters model were all just a bit off.
However, despite this, the soundtrack and story which are intertwined are the real stars of the game.
The metal soundtrack composed by Arnold Nesis consists of artists like Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (ex-Guns N’ Roses), Rob van der Loo (Epica), Ruud Jolie (Within Temptation), Casey Grillo (ex-Kamelot), Rocky Gray (ex-Evanescence), Mike Lepond (Symphony X), Danny Worsnop (Asking Alexandria), Tina Guo and Snowy Shaw (ex-King Diamond, ex-Therion).
The characters are voiced by Kobra Paige (Kobra and the Lotus), Danny Worsnop (Asking Alexandria), and Davidavi ‘Vidi’ Dolev (Gunned Down Horses). This is where the game’s strength is and it’s the musical offering. The game does turn into a musical pretty quickly. Levels and the amount of time you have to complete puzzles are dictated by musical interludes. I’m not a huge fan of musicals so I found the musical elements a bit over the top for me. The soundtrack is amazing though. However, the soundtrack doesn’t save the game, it doesn’t manage to gloss over the clunky gameplay and parts of the story which are odd and wholly unbelievable story elements.
Of Bird and Cage starts with a deep dark story of a young woman and her trauma throughout her life. It was a lot darker than I thought it would be. The metal soundtrack adds a lot of depth to the story and helps to paint the story. The game does take a turn and becomes like a musical fairly quick though. I’m not a huge musical fan. I found the quick-time events and general gameplay a bit clunky. The visuals lacked the refinement and polish that the gameplay also did. Parts of the story are just bizarre but the ideas are good but just not executed as they could have been. The soundtrack is the real superb element of the game that helps drive the game. Ultimately better gameplay elements and visuals would have improved the game.