19th Oct2018

‘Syberia 3’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Paul Metcalf


I remember the first two Syberia games for the fairly strong story and the fact that they were good point & click adventures when there seemed to be no others around. That was about thirteen years ago though, and now Syberia 3 has arrived to carry on the story, but is it worth the wait?

I’ll admit I never really invested much time in the Syberia games, and some type of catch-up would have been nice. Instead what we are given is an introduction revealing that protagonist Kate Walker, a New York lawyer is now in a hospital after being saved by the Youkol tribe. Now seemingly trapped in the hospital with the tribe’s guide, you must find a way to escape and get the guide out too. For fans of adventure games, this is fine, even if you don’t know much about the story. There is plenty of story that connects to the past game, but in truth you can continue the game knowing that people are on their way to come and collect you, which means you need to get out of there. The Youkol also need to leave so that their ostriches can continue their migration successfully.

Where Syberia 3 starts making mistakes is the user interface. Now in 3D, there has been an attempt to bring the game mechanics up to date; and while this does work for the most part, the tank controls for Kate can be very annoying and the object selection is hit and miss. This is something that you can get used to. But the fact you HAVE to get used to it shows the issues that are there… It seems the Syberia games were much better suited to the PC’s use of mouse and keyboard and this game has suffered somewhat in “translation” from PC to consoles.

In the game, you’ll find that Kate has to talk to many people and this is where the game gets more interesting. Most of the story will be revealed in this area of the game, and you can control Kate’s tone when she is talking to characters. There is a fairly simplistic Telltale Games style reaction system in place, and this does seem to have repercussions as to how the character’s act towards you. The story itself is also interesting and does keep you invested. However, once again Syberia 3 shoots itself in the foot  – this time in the character interactions and in particular in the voice acting. While some characters fit well with the voice actor choices, some don’t seem to fit at all, which hinders the immersion in the game at times. This is again a shame, as while the voice acting is not bad, it just seems slightly miscast, which is really odd.

Syberia 3 should be praised for its look, even if the upgraded 3D graphics don’t really live up to the previous games, which I felt had a more unique look. If we weren’t comparing them, this would not be a bad game at all, and it is fair that time really has gone into making the game look good.

People who loved the Syberia games will obviously enjoy Syberia 3, even with the many problems that it has on show. For new people though I’m not sure they will be as invested, and this is a shame. Maybe those looking to play this should also track down and purchase the previous games and play through those first?

*** 3/5

Syberia 3 is out now Nintendo Switch from Microids.


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