Gnosia (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Eric Ace 30.06.2021

Review for Gnosia on Nintendo Switch

At an all-time high of popularity right now are "Hidden Traitor" games. For those uninitiated, the general way these play is: a group of people, anywhere from 5 to 15 are tasked with surviving something - the problem is someone in the group is the 'traitor' (werewolf, alien, Cylon, etc). It's not so simple to figure out, because of course anyone can say "I'm human," which is where the fun and tension comes from as suspicion rises. Gnosia wraps this up in a single player experience of 14 AI personalities that are remarkably well done, weaving a story into the multiple experiences.

Right off the bat, Gnosia is just a really weird experience. It is completely confusing what is happening at first, and the cast of characters feels more like those you would find at a carnival. The dialogue can be repetitious, the music only has two-three songs, and the gameplay can become a grind - but despite all of these negatives stated up front, the game is one of the more interesting, heart-filled titles that have come out in a while.

The premise of it is relatively simple, taking 'Traitor' games, such as Werewolf, Battlestar Galatica, or Mafia, and making it into a single player experience. Each round a player will find themselves into a random setup, ranging from 5-15 characters, and any role from the alien (called 'Gnosia') to humans, to third parties. Each loop, they must listen to characters, interject when appropriate, and help vote off the enemy. When the round is over, players get some experience to put into stats, and start back with a new setup.

Early on, expect many losses as the 'debate stats' aren't that high, and as a player you do not know what is happening. Yet, there is no punishment - in fact much of the true story is only revealed during losses. This weaves a slow plot into the gameplay, explaining why people are randomly assigned positions, and why the player is time-looping. Imagine a type of a party game that can be played quickly over and over, yet slowly starts to construct a larger narrative.

Screenshot for Gnosia on Nintendo Switch

Debates have the player and the AI doing battle over who to suspect. Interestingly, if you say too much the computers start suspecting you for being 'suspicious.' Likewise hang out in the shadows and get called out for it as well. Whoever the player attacks starts to like them less, and becomes a target, making it a delicate balance of who to upset while trying to survive.

Cleverly, this has a serious 'meta' aspect to it, where the player must learn about each AI character's personality to beat the game. There are those that are vicious liars and selfish who will slit the players throat even when on the same team. Then there are those who are loyal and dislike lying, who are prefect allies, easy enemies, and worst case scenario, easy targets to get people off of your back if things get desperate.

There are problems certainly. The stat system, despite explanation, is still highly obfuscated. It is very unclear what exactly boosting, say, 'Logic' does, compared to 'Charisma.' Likewise, certain lines of dialogue get repeated very often, which is a bit of a drag. Some runs come down to pure luck. All these being said though, this beams with heart. The way AI handles situations is masterfully well done for how much it outright encourages a 'meta' aspect to learning the characters - and ironically weaving this into the overarching story itself.

Screenshot for Gnosia on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

The novelty of Gnosia, along with its heart really stands out. Yes, there are some problems with repetitious dialogue in the debates, the music really needs expanding and so on, but there is an undeniably addicting and fun side to trying 'just one more time.' Furthermore, the very clever AI, and the constructing of an over-arching story, certainly deserves good accolades. Over-looking a few problems, this is highly recommended.

Developer

Petit Depot

Publisher

Playism

Genre

Visual Novel

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

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   

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