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Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Across the Grooves 6 months ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 6 months ago.
Alice has a very normal life. She’s in a long-term relationship, works in a bank and has a comfortable apartment in Bordeaux. However, in this world the real and the magical overlap. She receives a record from Ulysse, her ex-lover, that literally takes her back into her own history. You travel with her and direct the interactions and choices she has as she travels across European cities, meets colourful characters and tries to solve the mystery of what is going on.
As you progress, you try and track down Ulysse as you explore the new parallel realities each time you play the record. What starts as something of a puzzle turns into a journey of self-discovery.
The result is a game that stands out for both its branching narrative structure but also the quality of the hand-drawn visuals and writing. It's a game that you can play many times to see how your decisions impact Alice’s fate (and how she appears) through the multiple story paths and endings.
The game includes alcohol and tobacco consumption, drug references, non-pornographic nudity and sexual references, and non-graphic violence. This is depicted in the graphic novel visual style.
12+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. It's a slow game that requires the player to do a lot of reading, reflecting and observation. You also need to be able to appreciate the relationship tensions to fully understand the narrative.
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