Penumba: Requiem – Steam Backlog Bonanza [Blaugust 13]

480 words.

The Steam Backlog Bonanza marches on with a look at Penumbra: Requiem (and Black Plague). Penumbra came out in 2009 but I couldn’t find any records of when I bought it, so it must have been a long time ago. I had played Black Plague for about a half hour before, but yesterday was the first time I looked at Requiem.

An obelisk puzzle in Penumbra: Requiem.

Penumbra: Requiem is actually an “expansion” for Black Plague. It was billed as a puzzle game.

But first, I started out playing Black Plague for a few minutes to refresh my memory. It’s a first-person adventure-ish game with a creepy flair. You have to look around and use stuff in your environment to get through obstacles. I never got beyond the first room so I don’t know how scary the game gets.

The first room in Penumbra: Black Plague.

Then I switched to Requiem, which appears to eschew any sort of story in favor of being a pure puzzle game, somewhat in the same vein as something like Portal. You are put into rooms, and have to figure out how to get out of the rooms.

The first room involved figuring out how to move stuff around so you could jump up to get to a ladder, so you could operate an obelisk thingy to open a door. Then you had to figure out how to move a bridge into place to get a key. Then you had to figure out how to operate a couple of pressure plates to activate the exit portal.

The first puzzle room in Penumbra: Requiem.

It definitely had the same sort of feel as Half-Life 2 and Portal, where you pick up stuff in the environment and move them to where they’re supposed to be. Physics was a really inventive concept in games back in 2009.

The puzzles were sufficiently challenging, and not terribly obvious (to me, at least). Unfortunately I’m not a big fan of puzzle games. Since I’m ostensibly a software developer by trade, I basically make a living by solving puzzles. So I’m not very keen on doing the same thing in a game that’s supposed to be fun.

Will I play more? Probably not. There wasn’t anything particularly wrong with it (though the graphics are a bit dated now). I’m just not into it.

Live Stream - Penumbra: Black Plague and Requiem

Stream Production Notes: These streams are becoming so rote to me now that I arrive at my gaming PC a little before 4, setup my notes, setup the graphics settings on the game, start the stream, play the game, stop the stream, and then completely forget about it. I barely even remember them by the time I sit down to write this followup blog post. I recall nothing unusual occurring during this particular stream.

Previously on the Steam Backlog Bonanza: Apotheon.

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