If you come to this game completely unaware as to the subject matter, be warned, this has nothing to do with the seventies based revolution of retail workers over the annual Black Friday weekend. No, the subject matter is somewhat darker, very political, educational and eye-opening.
Set during a civil revolution in Iran at the beginning of 1979, you play Reza, an Iranian photographer who gets caught up in the revolution to overthrow the ruling monarchy in search of a fairer more democratic republic. It sounds deep, and it is. Based upon real individuals and events, the game itself is very similar to a Telltale game, complete with conversation branches and quick time events. As a photographer, you are tasked with taking photos of demonstrations and the such which are then interspersed with real-life photos from the period alongside a journal which catalogues them and also serves as a history lesson, with details of the revolution and Iranian life at the time.
I concede I knew next to nothing about this period of Iran’s history and yet I found it very engaging. As with all conflicts and revolutions, there is never really a clear-cut right and wrong and the ambiguity remains in-game, with only the slightest of bias towards the revolutionaries. The game is beautifully put together with exceptional voice acting and writing, decent visuals and sound and some great motion capture. You can even choose to play the game with all voice acting in Farsi should you chose to.
This game has been available for other devices for a couple of years now, yet it’s the first time it has come to consoles. I can’t imagine that the game will sell particularly well in the west, which is a great shame because it really is a great story told well in this newer more engaging medium we call games. Give it a go you won’t regret it unless you’re an uneducated single-minded fool.
Beard Score: 8/10
Genre: Adventure, interactive drama
Release: 02/08/2018 (Console)
Format: Steam, Mobile, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One