White Shadows: PS5- Help Ravegirl from attempting to flee a terrible dystopia.
December 7th, 2021
A visually stunning and narratively rich dystopian setting with a distinctive art style
Varied puzzle platforming with unique scenarios that keep things fresh
An exciting personal story combined with social critique
A simple and intuitive control scheme
White Shadows is a cinematic puzzle-platformer in which you play as a young Ravengirl attempting to flee a terrible dystopia based on oppression and brutality, which places her at the bottom of the social hierarchy. The magnificent architectural features and exquisite monochrome art style of White Shadows combine to create an atmosphere-rich environment. It’s a society where the elite’s lies are plastered all over the place, where warped forms of entertainment are used to keep everyone in line, and where optimism appears to be in short supply.
The metropolis our young explorer wishes to flee to is a frightening place to be, composed of a massive network of towers rising from the emptiness of post-catastrophe darkness into the sky above. She’ll have to leap across decrepit infrastructure that crosses the enormous darkness all around, and evade the watchful eyes of guards waiting to shoot her down. On her trip, she will visit the city’s brightest highs and lowest lows, realizing her fate as one of the few free people alive.
White Shadows game had us enthralled. We found it to be emotional and thought-provoking, but it was also really unsettling and frightening to play. There will be references to racism, suicide, violence, animal abuse, forced labor, and xenophobia, according to the introductory scene. We were scared when we read this because, while there are scenes like this, they are artistically presented and, while unpleasant, are more provoking than frivolous. The dystopian scenery and monotony of everyday existence are shown so vividly that you feel as if you’ve been dragged down into the cesspit with the miserable souls fighting for a brief respite from the darkness. The steady drone of machines, along with the monochrome aesthetics, create an ominous and dismal atmosphere, and the sense of despair is palpable. With some excellent use of light and shade, the game looks just stunning. While the elite enjoys the benefits of light and sells it as a commodity, the social hierarchy mandates that the rest of us must languish in the dark, guided along by sentinels ready to punish anyone who deviates from the path. The game is adept at dropping hints and drawing comparisons with modern life, and our attention was frequently drawn away as the game discreetly reminded us of events and circumstances that are common in our society. It was a dramatic and touching experience that made us examine and consider our own decisions. The story is a little hazy, and we must admit that we didn’t entirely comprehend the ending. There is no narration, text, or voice acting and events are there for you to interpret. We have played many games like this and most of them just feel dull and opaque but White Shadows resonated with me and stirred emotions and made us care. That is no mean feat in a game of this type.
In most areas, the gameplay of White Shadows is mediocre. Platforming isn’t difficult, and the riddles are mostly straightforward. The mechanics aren’t particularly original or novel. It’s all the same stuff we’ve seen before. The liberal jumping mechanics help with platforming parts; she can leap vast gaps and we never struggled to get to the other side. Ravengirl’s mobility was extremely impressive to us. We know it seems silly, but we were genuinely impressed by the way she scaled ladders as she ran across the skyline. It simply appeared to be attractive.
The typical pushing and tugging of things were used in the puzzle parts, but there were a few fascinating primary problems strewn about that won’t stump seasoned puzzle fans. The stealth elements were also simple to navigate, but we enjoyed the sections featuring her small bird-like companions.
The accompanying music is military and disciplined in White Shadows, and some good cinematic moments complement the tale and highlight social inequalities. The only serious worry we have about recommending this game at full price is the length of the game. Your first game will be intense, yet it will only take you two to three hours to complete. There are milestones to earn that we missed on our first run, and there are plenty of chapter options to help you accomplish it, but subsequent tries don’t feel as fun once you know what to anticipate, so replay value is limited.
The visuals are very beautiful. They’re innovative and evocative, and the skillful use of light and shade creates a creepy, surreal atmosphere. Against the massive backdrop of towers and infinite vistas, you get an immediate sense of grandeur. In comparison, such a small frame appears insignificant.
Although the sound is simple, the white noise combined with the steady drone of machines and industrious behavior creates a sad and repeating picture of dread. There are a few cinematic scenes with song tunes that change the mood from desperation to an artificial creepiness.