Beyond Blue (PC) Review

By Bonny Ramsay 23.10.2020 1

Review for Beyond Blue on PC

Offering a luxurious and beautiful environment to delve into, Beyond Blue provides an explorable environment filled with various aquatic animals and luscious vegetation to fully immerse yourself. Its soft and deep ambience attempts to offer a relaxing experience along the journey as you are challenged with diving deep, guided by your task book, and the other members of your newly formed research team. Developed by E-Line Media, Beyond Blue launched back in June of this year, and Cubed3 bring you the verdict on the PC version.

This single-player experience is heavily narrated to enable the player to adventure into the depths of the Earth's blue oceanic environment, whilst being educated on real-world conservation and environmental issues on-going today. E-Line Media has joined together with the BBC to bring an educational experience that the player can be a part of and make key decisions and, ultimately, their choices' outcomes. Eight levels give enough time for delving into multiple environments that the ocean has to offer, from the sparkling coral reefs to the darkest depths where light diminishes.

Using the latest technology, and through the portrayal of streaming to a wider audience, Beyond Blue provides a detailed look into the specifics of each environment and animal's basic traits. Using a scanner, the player can interact with the environment and gather valuable intel for the research team, which aids in unravelling mysteries. An aspect that proves disappointing is the lack of interaction with the animals. The diver feels disconnected from the environment as the animals around them don't appear to even notice their presence as they approach.

The fluid controls make this an enjoyable experience from the get-go. The ability to amend the keyboard bindings on PC allow customisation to suit personal preferences. The controls provide an intuitive experience and the diving seems fluid and controllable, even in tight spots between caves and chasms. There is also the option to be able to use a controller, allowing comfort and differing play styles.

Screenshot for Beyond Blue on PC

Follow the small team of oceanic experts as they trace the lives of the creatures underneath the surface. It isn't a strong storyline to follow, but this is clearly not the intention. The main character is already a somewhat established diver, meaning there isn't any room for improving swimming skills, or skill trees in general, which may have been a nice feature to have and may have provided some depth to character progression, which this is a little lacklustre in. Armed with a scanner, searching out all the different animals and scanning their information into a database is encouraged, as facts and information can then be read regarding the animal scanned. This is an immersive find-and-seek title of which the key reward is knowledge regarding the environment rather than gear, currency, or levels.

Whilst Beyond Blue isn't exactly AAA in quality, its graphical boundaries provide the purpose of immersing those in control in its setting but does not pressure a high spec machine to be used in the process. The clean and crisp setting allows for a realistic experience of diving without having to put on all the equipment. The music is also perfect for capturing the feel of the adventure; uplifting and gentle to tie in with the slow-paced narrative as it unfolds. It has a smooth score that doesn't overburden the natural ambience, allowing players to truly feel at one with the ocean.

Screenshot for Beyond Blue on PC

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

The E-Line Media developers and publishers have clearly worked tirelessly to bring a heightened awareness that has a heavy focus on conservation and environmental issues that are pressing today. They have enveloped all these issues into a relaxing environment to enable people to be involved directly with these themes in the interactive and safe environment of Beyond Blue. There are no threats, which overall makes this work of art a safe space to explore in comfort at their own pace. If there is an expectation of this to be a true dive with threats and a different experience each time, it is likely disappointment will be experienced and a feeling of boredom may creep in fairly quickly, but if the aim is to relax and learn about the ocean, this truly is a wonderful title.

Developer

E-Line Media

Publisher

E-Line Media

Genre

Simulation

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Thanks for the review, Bonny - glad to have your first one done and dusted. This brings back fond memories of Endless Ocean 2!

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

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