Linger in Shadows

In Metal Gear Solid 2, Hideo Kojima created a game that was incredibly immersive, with huge cutscenes that expanded further the Metal Gear universe. Though the length of the average cutscene was criticized by some, the game was a massive success and reviewed extremely well. It also took gaming a step further to competition with films, since the story and cutscenes often blurred the line between being a game and actually being involved in a film. Where Metal Gear Solid started life as a computer game, and expanded to have many film-like features, Linger in Shadows starts as a short film, created using graphics technology available to Playstation 3, and inserts a few interactive game elements. The result is a short, interactive art film that is actually quite stirring, despite not leaving much for the player to do.

Linger in Shadows

Now, I could go away and research the film creators and try and understand what the artistic meaning is, but if I'm honest, I couldn't give a fried monkey's puffcake what it all means. To me, it's moving music placed over an interesting short film that uses varied technical demonstrations to express some very strange stuff. There's no easy plot involving a good guy, a bad guy, a good girl (and maybe a bad girl too), with guns and aircraft or any of the usual jazz. In this game, there's seemingly random stuff plopped on the screen, ranging from still pictures that are sketched as part of the video, through to strange, Matrix-like metallic squid creatures and bizarre flying dogs. If that hasn't sold it to you then get this: you can pause the film, rewind and, at appropriate moments, start tweaking a few things like, for example, switching a few lights on or rotating some pieces (in 3-D) that are featured in the film. It's one of those things that, for most people, is quite interesting and amusing for about twenty minutes, whilst for others, it may well lead to years of head scratching and deep understanding. I'm firmly in the first category, but I did enjoy my twenty minutes of amusement.

You can play the game (with the interactive features), and even look for secret hidden objects (by changing the camera orientation during the film and searching the surrounding areas), or you can simply watch it all the way through. Both are equally (un)interesting (depending on which category you chose earlier). With total functionality stopping there, it's a good job the game costs less than a drink down at the pub (though that particularly piece of extortion should be the subject of a rant somewhere, sometime, but I guess it's probably not that bad if you're a non-geek that gets the idea behind socializing in pubs). Anyway, if you're bored, and have some loose change left in your Playstation wallet, take a peak at Playstation 3's strangest title and, you never know, you might be inspired to go and solve some million-dollar problem. Or you might just blink a couple of times and then carry on with your life.

Game details

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Review summary


A moving video and an interesting idea


Very nice to look at, but not very interactive


Superb music


Very short, but watchable repeatedly



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Garrus Vakarian

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