Story-driven point-and-click pixel art adventures set in and around New Orleans have a fine track record, so why not go back to the well once again? That's precisely what indie developer Geography of Robots plans to do with its upcoming mystery Norco: Faraway Lights.
The game takes place in the "industrial swamplands and decaying suburbs of South Louisiana," where your mother was "obsessed" with the local refinery. Her recent death has brought you back your hometown to settle her estate, but upon your arrival you discover that your brother is missing. Now, aided by a "fugitive security cyborg that your mother harbored for almost a decade, you must venture into a conspiratorial underworld hidden throughout the swamps, refineries, and abandoned strip malls of suburban New Orleans to decipher the strange clues that point to your brother's whereabouts."
Despite its geographical similarities to Gabriel Knight, Norco shares more in common with titles like Snatcher and Rise of the Dragon, and more recently 2064: Read Only Memories. A first-person pixel art adventure with a navigable minimap, the game sends players through the "petrochemical landscapes of South Louisiana," including "downtown New Orleans on a desolate weeknight." There the story will unfold through a "branching non-linear dialogue system" as you solve puzzles, "bust into a refinery with your robot friends," and even engage in some light turn-based combat.
Originally announced as a three-part episodic series, Norco: Faraway Lights will now be released as a single game to be launched on Steam for Windows and Mac, hopefully sometime before the end of the year, though no specific target date has yet been announced.