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Review of My Memory of Us. About feelings, friendship and kindness

In the modern world, not many artists dare to touch upon such a sensitive topic as Nazism. Don’t just release another “run-shoot” when enemies are dressed in the colors of the Third Reich just for show. We are talking about a project meaningful from the point of view of history, which through the prism of simple human relationships would show all the horrors of the fallen regime. Poles from Juggler Games turned out to be those people who were not indifferent to this topic. These guys tried in their own way, through the color palette “Schindler’s List», Comic style and cute characters convey all the horrors of the Holocaust. The developers, of course, are not the first who decided to talk about something like this, but the more time passes after the Second World War, the less they want to remember about it. Therefore, such projects in modern conditions are especially important, they cannot be overlooked. So let’s take a look at the strengths and weaknesses. My memory of us in this review. Moreover, there have been no decent, story-driven indie games for a long time.

Where do legs grow from?

My Memory of Us review

Everyone who launches My Memory of Us and goes through the prologue will feel something familiar. They will feel it exactly when the main game starts. An indie project with a side view, about a war and some pretty funny animation? Yes, this is the brother of Valiant Hearts! Willy-nilly, you have to compare the game of the Poles with a masterpiece Ubisoft and this comparison is far from in favor of the former. But first things first.

The game begins with the fact that a little girl, very keen on reading books, decides to find some new, exciting story. To do this, she goes to a bookstore, where her grandfather-seller, who has snuggled her, “waits” behind the counter. Having woken up the old man, she forgive me to get some fascinating story from the shelves of his store. The grandfather is already old and asks the young lady herself to run into the attic and bring the book to the counter. Picking up a solid red volume in his hands, the seller notices in it a torn off part of the photograph, which is very, very dear to him. Instead of literary fiction, he rewards the young book lover with a truly interesting, instructive and outright touching story that once happened to him.

As it turned out, my grandfather, as a child, survived the war with humanoid robots. He was one of those who wore clothes of red colors, and mechanical creatures for some reason fiercely hated all “red” ones. Therefore, pogroms took place in the cities, fierce battles were waged, prisoners were captured. Those red, who fell into the clutches of robots, were forced to sit on trains, which, having lifted off the ground, carried people away in an unknown direction. They knew one thing for sure – such a trip did not promise anything good.

It is easy to understand the metaphor of the authors: robots are Nazis, military operations are World War II, people in red are “inferior” races from the point of view of the Reich. Sometimes there are minor inconsistencies with the last point, because almost all combat resistance wears this color hated by robots, but these are trifles. In general, it is very easy to understand that we are talking about the Holocaust. Even the creepy trains that took millions of people to their deaths are present in the game, but with their own interpretation.

It’s not scary together!

My Memory of Us review

The main part of the game begins with the grandfather’s story. Our heroes are a little boy who escaped from pursuit, and a girl who finds him in a trash can, hiding from the pursuit. From this moment on, the heroes begin to travel together and hide from evil machines. Before us is a project very similar to Valiant Hearts: you need to shuffle through 2-D levels, solving simple puzzles, fight with enemies or avoid them and survive in every possible way. We control two characters, each of which has its own skills – a girl can run fast and shoot with a slingshot, and a boy is able to steal something or deftly sneak somewhere. Holding hands, the heroes activate interesting features: if you have a girl under your control, you, fleeing a chase, can take the boy by the arms, and he will also begin to move quickly. Such mechanics were supposed to serve as an excellent field for flight of imagination – a great many interesting game moments could be created. But the Poles were very inept in taking advantage of their strengths.

Cruel world. Or not?

My Memory of Us review

The storyline takes us from one interesting adventure to the next, but everything clearly does not feel as planned by the developers themselves. The main idea of ​​the game was to convey to the mass public (perhaps even the younger part of it) how terrible the Second World War and the Holocaust in particular were. And it seems like a good story, and characters that you empathize with … but no. It’s all to blame for the well-too-kind world and over-cute enemies. Those who are represented by robots simply cannot express themselves in the form of cute and funny drawn cars. When you get in touch with the world of the game, it seems to you that you are on a kind childish adventure, and not in a visual restoration of one of the most terrible events in the history of mankind. You can’t show the Holocaust like that. It is clear that the Poles tried to smooth the corners as much as possible, carefully bypass the topic of real Nazism and fascism in the past and not offend the feelings of those whose ancestors fought on the side of the Third Reich. But the developers are already too clever. Even the color palette taken straight from the great “Schindler’s List” does not help – the game is not perceived as an interpretation of something serious. And at the same time, her most important idea disappears: to teach people how bad it is to hate.

Moreover, My Memory of Us has another Achilles’ heel – the gameplay. It is clear that most likely Juggler Games relied heavily on history and emotions, but the process of the game itself could not be done so monotonously. You will all run for several hours through the levels, albeit very well-drawn, but offering nothing interesting in terms of gameplay. From time to time, you will find the simplest puzzles, realized for some reason. Unless they add a little charm to the game with their details.

There are also questions about individual game scenes. A game about the horrors of war, and you (two orphans!) Are offered to correctly arrange the cutlery on the table at your grandfather, and only then will he allow you to dine. And like that, no, no, it does occur. What makes the location more interesting is the fact that secrets are scattered over them – photos with stories of real people of that time. And this detail loses its strong message a little against the background of cute robots and stupid quests.

Oil painting

My Memory of Us review

Special thanks to Juggler Games for the picture. The game is beautifully drawn. Yes, and here she has something in common with Valiant Hearts, but this is only a plus. Like brushed levels, characters you empathize with. You can feel the great efforts of the developers. We can say about the levels of the game that they are made by hand – like the most expensive cars. One can feel the most serious attitude of the Poles towards their project.

Thanks to the visual part and the sound (here he executed in the best traditions of platform adventures of recent years), all the good characters that you feel almost home. It’s another matter that the story is about the same with the enemies …

My Memory of Us review

Eventually

In the end, we see how the Poles stepped on their own feet: having touched on such a serious topic, they did not muster the courage to express their thoughts and feelings in a suitable setting. With such a message and plot, the game could fly very high if it were not for some kind of “plush” adventure on a not at all funny theme. Having relied on the idea and greatly simplifying the gameplay, the developers risked being left with nothing. But the great plot (especially the plot and ending) and such familiar characters will not give you a reason to remember My Memory of Us with a bad word after passing. Especially if you are not indifferent to the life of real people who endured the atrocities of that war.

LID2PRO reviewer verdict

Playability

The game can show practically nothing new: simple puzzles, which are sometimes out of place; intuitive location (all important objects painted red) inconvenient to travel around the 2-D levels – that’s what you should expect from the gameplay The Memory of Us.

Great work of artists. Thanks to them, this short game feels like something alive. You are very sensitive to children, worrying about their every failure with all your heart.

Melodies only add depth, while speech and all sorts of side sounds make the adventure more reverent and intimate.

Single player campaign

Despite the flaws with the setting, the adventures of the heroes will not leave you indifferent. Good characters, a storyline, and a dramatic ending worth completing the game to the end – just a great cocktail.

Here, the Poles, frankly, got into a puddle. Sometimes you have to go through some places at a time only because of the crookedly implemented control. Either the girl will not grab the boy by the arms, then for six months you will climb or climb down from somewhere. In short, there is work to be done in the future.

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