Not the usual sort of game I would play, Cibele is (at least as closely as it can get) a fmv point and click adventure game. Except instead of collecting clues, items or whatnot for puzzles, you’re collecting hints for narration. The game itself is largely patterned like this:
- Watch FMV footage.
- Log into Nina’s computer (she’s the protagonist)
- Read all her notes, look at images and just get a sense for who she is.
- Go into her MMO (it’s pretty much FFXI) and meet up with Ichi (Blake, the other character).
- Fight mobs while listening to the two of them awkwardly flirt.
- Once enough mobs have been killed, fight a boss until it runs away. This usually happens at important bits in their chat.
- All the while, look at and (barely) respond to emails and instagram.
- Do this three times. This will end with the boss defeated and both actors having made an important decision.
- Do this three times. The whole game is about 2 hours.
So it seems like there’s a game here but largely, it’s mostly timed events that will occur. No illusion of choice is offered nor required. This game is less about being a game, and more about being art like a book or painting. The game doesn’t run at a stable frame rate but it’s not about that, it’s about the story.
So if you’re the sort of gamer looking for art, you probably already know and have played the game. If you’re not, then you’re going to want to stay away.
Myself? I was intrigued by the story that Nina had to tell. It was hers, as it was based on a real life series of events. In fact, it was based on a series of events that happened in FFXI on the Sylph server which I had played on.
Maybe that personal connection made me enjoy the game a little more. But from the honest cringeworthy dialogue that, honestly, 14 year olds are prone to use to the blink and you’ll miss it conclusion, it felt honest.