What would you do if you found yourself trapped on a creepy space station with nothing but a computer to help you escape? That is the premise of Code 7, a very atypical, text-based, five-episode adventure game which recently received funding on Kickstarter.
Created by two-man German developer Goodwolf Studio, Code 7 tells the story of Alex, a hacker who finds himself on a space station with quite literally nothing but a computer to enable him to interact with the systems and other characters. Episode 0: Allocation, an hour-long prologue (designed as a rapid-prototyping project at Cologne Game Lab and available free from GameJolt), introduces the series’ intriguing hacking-based gameplay.
As you use DOS-like commands to access systems, bypass security doors, and communicate with Sam, a woman who is trapped with you on the station, you come to realize that all robots at the facility seem to be under the influence of a malevolent AI entity called S.O.L.I. As you help each other and uncover more information, it becomes clear that something known only as Code 7 is at the center of the mystery, and it will be up to you and your companion to find out what it is. Future episodes will introduce other characters to interact with, and the decisions you make during the game will influence their relationships with you and the outcome of each episode, leading to multiple endings in which some characters may not survive.
A variety of puzzle types are promised, and several are showcased in the prologue. Sometimes all that is needed is a log-in name and password, and your job is to find it, either in the system or by directing Sam to search for it in her location. Other times, you will have to hack a system using a graphical mini-game or help your companion bypass dangerous entities or situations by directing them on a mini-map. Other obstacles include balancing air pressure in two corridors or the energy in a system in order to gain access to another area.
Surprisingly for a text game, Code 7 is fully voice-acted and features both sound effects and a musical score. Much more traditionally for Interactive Fiction, players will use the keyboard to input commands and navigate the game, but those for whom typing is awkward or frustrating will be happy to know that an autocomplete feature and fairly forgiving timed sequences means that even slow typists are likely to find success.
The first episode of Code 7 is scheduled to arrive on Windows, Mac, and Linux platforms in April 2017. While the crowdsourcing effort is now complete, those who missed out can still preorder a season pass at $14.99 or glean more information about the upcoming series by heading to the Kickstarter page and the game’s official website.
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