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Review: Small Radios Big Televisions

by onNovember 21, 2016
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If you like puzzles games that call upon your intuition, Small Radios Big Televisions is for you. Developed by Fire Face, Small Radios Big Televisions is a blend of exploration and puzzle, filled with simple riddles and asking you to find your own way without any sort of tips.

Everything begins in a factory that called “Square”, with no sort of introduction of this strange universe that seems to be themed after the media industry (radio, television, etc). With a simple point-and-click mechanic, you make your way through the first door of an abandoned and deserted factory and your adventure begins. The latter follows a meticulous exploration of the place in search of cassettes and a plethora of more or less complicated puzzle. The journey will take you through dilapidated scenery such as old steel factories, weird buildings in the woods, etc.

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When you find these tapes, you will play them in a Walkman that is connected to some VR device on your head, and instead of just hearing audio recordings, you’ll experience a virtual world without limits. Inside this colorful world, flattering your vision, you will have to explore every corner from of it in search of green crystals that will help you thereafter open more locked doors in the “real world”… Quite simple until you discover that you’ll need to remix the tapes in order to re-live these virtual world in different ways and find more crystals.

At the end of each factory, you find yourself in a room with a radio that will play messages which are more or less strange, scrambled by a minimum frequency. It is a conversation between two men talking about the origins of the tapes, opposed to the fact that the world of these factories is about to collapse. Everything is about the importance of the tapes, whether or not it is a moment of pure recreation that can allow people to bypass the desolation of wasted power-plants.

These different factories you’ll visit are built in a clean and clutter-free structure. The passage between the doors and interaction with the environments is fluid. But the best visual art in this game are the virtual worlds found in the tapes, which can be quite psychedelic, full of rich colors and lights, a complete opposite to the dull and dark rooms of the factories.

Small Radios Big Televisions was reviewed using an PC downloadable copy of the game provided by Fire Face. The game was tested on a PC running Windows 10 Pro, with a 4GB NVIDIA Geforce GTX 960 fitted on a 5th Generation Intel i7 4720HQ 3.2Ghz CPU and topped with 16GB of RAM. The game is also available on PlayStation 4 via digital store. We don’t discuss review scores with publishers or developers prior to the review being published

What we liked

• A funky universe
• Point And Click gameplay
• Those virtual world

What is not fun

• That soundtrack loop gets annoying
• Very short game

Editor Rating
 
Concept
6.5

 
Graphics
7.2

 
Sound
6.5

 
Playability
7.8

 
Entertainment
7.5

 
Replay Value
5.0

Final Score
6.8


Our final verdict
 

With Small Radios Big Televisions, Fire Face built more of an experience than a game, which will still please enthusiast of simple puzzles and point and click titles. It's a paradoxical adventure, mixing a continuous flow of riddles to break, but also strange deduction and a world still stuck in analogue.

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