Before I heap on too much praise, know what you are getting into: this is a serious game with death around every corner. If you take it seriously, keep track of what’s going on and plan your moves carefully, you might just live another day and go further down the rabbit hole. If you play it for laughs you’ll be dead before you know it.
If you usually hate that kind of game, well so do I. But this game takes YOU seriously as well. The tone isn’t broken by preposterous inventory puzzles. When you die it’s for a reason that makes sense, not for accidentally walking off a ledge, crossing the street or forgetting to check your tires.
And then there are the good parts. The use of many different verbs including ones like Hide, Wait, Listen and Fight (best fighting mechanics in the genre!) do much to get the right feel across, add immersion and add a great sense of freedom.
This freedom in general is one the game’s great strengths.
You’ll get a cynical commentary about your dumb choices when you die, but there’s no hand-holding to keep you from making them. Even as the clock is ticking and discretion is key, there are usually many places you could go and feathers you could ruffle. Once you adjust it adds up to a game where you really have to stop and think about what you are and should be doing.
I’m usually more into comedy adventures where irreverent trash talk and stupid risk-taking go unpunished, but between the things above, the increasingly twisting mystery, the deliciously cynical writing and the unique music style, KGB managed to become one of my favorite adventure games. Give it a (serious) shot and it could reward you.
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Time Played: Over 20 hours