Omensight is a time-traveling, murder mystery, platformer set in a fantasy world. That’s a unique genre, but it blends those different elements remarkably well. It doesn’t hurt that story is interesting, and the game looks and sounds great. I only wish the camera wasn’t trying to fight me.
In Omensight, you are the legendary Harbinger. You are automatically summoned whenever the world is about to end. This generally makes people more likely to work with you, but less likely to be happy to see you.
Despite being a crisis manager of epic abilities, this time seems different. The Godless Priestess has been murdered, and you have one day to figure out why she was murdered and who killed her. If you cannot solve the mystery and fix the past, a giant snake god named Voden will destroy the world. So, no pressure.
Here is where you become a detective. You will have the chance to relive that last day with several different characters. Each one has their own personal motivations, and you can tag along with them to help them or stop them.
You will usually have a choice or two to make and this may grant you a new omensight. The omensight is critical, because it shows a memory of what happened on that fateful day. It’s the ultimate argument winner, because everyone knows that it’s true.
Omensight gives you the freedom to pick which characters will see your omensights and what order you want to spend time with them. There is a screen that shows all your clues and tracks your investigative progress.
The problem is that it’s only a piece of what happened. You can use this to influence someone to make certain choices. Who you show certain memories may impact the final outcome of the story. Do you attack a friend on another day in order to gain some trust, or do you show them your omensight?
The story is grander and more serious than it’s anthropomorphic characters would imply. This is a tale of two countries at war. The evil emperor Indrik is waging a war against Rodentia. The Rodentians, led by Ratika, are trying to keep these invaders out of their country. Ludomir and Draga are on different sides of killing and protecting Indrik and Ratika.
As the Harbinger, you don’t really have a side. That’s what makes the story more interesting. Everyone has a reason for what they are doing. As you delve more deeply into the events, you realize that villains and heroes are more nuanced. Not everyone is what they seem, and both sides have something they regret.
- Developer: Spearhead Games
- Release Date: May 15th
- Price: $19.99, £18.99
This type of insight is rare in games. I don’t mind a rigid good vs. bad dichotomy in my games, but Omensight goes a lot further. It’s up to you to unwind the mystery and get to the details, but it’s really rewarding.
Memories are scattered throughout the world. By exploring and breaking seals to unlock new areas, you can acquire a character’s memories. These are text-based stories that give you more background or describe a formative moment for that character. It’s well worth seeking these out.
You can collect amber and experience during the day. When the world is destroyed, you are whisked back to the Tree of Life with the mysterious Witch. You can raise your level or improve your skills and increase your health.
With every new level, you will gain a new move, attack, or capability. Some of these allow you to throw enemies or slow down time in a small area.
The combat in Omensight is also decent. You are powerful, but not immortal. Your energy blade has a light and heavy attack, but your quick dodge is very useful for pushing you out of the way and quickly attacking another enemy. When you add special attacks and dodge, it is very fluid.
The level design is also good. Sometimes, you can skip through the day until you reach a pivotal moment, but you are going to see the same areas multiple times. The developers keep things fresh by having different characters take different paths.
It doesn’t hurt that the art style is beautiful. The bright orange in the lava or lush greens in the world give the stylized visuals a real punch. Some may find something to complain about here, but I really liked it. It’s as smooth as it is striking.
The music is also very nice. There is a choir sound in some of the levels and some instrumentation. However, the highlight is the song that Ratika plays when you first meet her. Don’t rush toward her. Let her sing more of it. The vocals are lovely, and the lyrics made me smile.
The camera did not make me smile. It is a fixed but dynamically shifting view, and you cannot control it. When it works, it’s great. When it doesn’t, I was cursing. The game tries to let you see through pillars and doors, if they block your view, but it’s not enough.
There is one boss fight that takes place in a longer area. If you don’t keep the boss at a particular end of the level, he disappears off screen. You cannot turn the camera. You have to wait for him to come back down and try not to get hit.
Platform jumps are another place I found the camera annoying. Without being able to move the camera, I would misjudge the distance for certain jumps. I would normally get it on the second time, and I fully acknowledge that I am just bad at games. I still didn’t like the angle for some of the jumps.
The game lets you make some choices, but it doesn’t force you. The ending of the game reflected my decisions. I didn’t help someone, and this caused their life to take a very negative direction. Although I was able to help save the world, everyone did not live happily ever after. It’s a nice touch to let you know that your time mattered.
I had a lot of fun with Omensight. The time travel mechanic is clever without becoming overly gimmicky, the combat is solid, and the story and shifting perspectives added some depth. The fixed camera still made me grind my teeth, but there is enough good in Omensight to overlook its one major flaw.
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a digital copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Reviewed using a PS4 Pro.