Adventure Jam 2020: Signal

“Signal” by Oddly Shaped Pixels (Renaud Despinois), Sarah Beaulieu, Ivy Dupler & Ben Britton.

“An isolated scientific outpost, a team gone missing, a race against the clock to save the sole survivor…”

The plot of the fantastic adventure game “Signal” starts very harmless, as you in your role as Emilia only have to deliver a package to a research station, located on an island. You arrive there at three o’clock in the afternoon, your team will pick you up eight hours later. That should be enough time for you to do your job, right? It would be, if not one mysterious pandemic would have taken over the outpost.

You do not know that in the beginning, of course. But as nearly all buildings are shut down, you will find only one survivor in the infirmary. It is Professor Tray Wilson, one of the island’s researchers and also a senior citizen. While he is still alive, he is injured and might not make it, if you do not help him out. You can stabilize him by giving him water or by putting power cells into the half-broken medbay and thereby you will stall his oncoming death.

But water bottles and power cells are scarce resources in the outpost, also they are scattered all over the place. That is why you have to explore all buildings in “Signal” strategically. However, each single action will actually use up some time. Going to one building costs you and Professor Wilson five minutes, exploring a room can take up to ten minutes, while searching through drawers, shelfs and other furniture can be even more time-consuming activities.

So keep an eye on Wilson’s health, figure out how you can reach out to your team, think carefully about your next moves and while you are on it, you can try to figure out what happened here. Was it really a sudden sickness or maybe a failed experiment or something completely different? Maybe you will need more than one playthrough to find the answers you are looking for. Overall, “Signal” does a wonderful job in mixing up the conventional puzzle design of adventure games with strategical resource management elements. And it does so with a clean user interface, excellent visuals and well done voice acting! [PLAY]