Replica (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Josh Di Falco 29.06.2021

Review for Replica on Nintendo Switch

Replica is an interesting title that, on the surface, feels predatory. The main premise revolves around snooping through the mobile phone of Dickie, and deep-diving into his text messages, call history, social media posts, photos and anything else that could be found on his mobile phone. The unnamed protagonist is charged with finding evidence that Dickie was partaking in terrorist activity, all the while being imprisoned by Homeland Security, with the main character's parents at risk of going down should he fail to comply with the directives given to him. Granted, the entire concept and premise sounds like a tense situation, so it's definitely interesting to see whether Somi is able to nail the mark with this really short but ultimately interesting title.

Replica starts off with the main unnamed character picking up a mobile phone - which becomes immediately apparent that it's not his. Within seconds, the phone begins receiving calls and text messages from various people - but the first step to answering these messages is to crack the pin code of the mobile phone. Quite cleverly, the pin code isn't as hard as it seems to figure out, and before too long, the rest of the puzzles continue a similar pattern of problem-solving to try and deal with. Whether it's cracking the password to the in-game Facebook account or Instagram account, all of the information can be hard to figure out due to the preconceived notions of video-game thinking. For example, some of the puzzles can be figured by just going through the motions of real-world thinking. Pin codes and passwords may be someone's birthday for example, or anniversary dates which can be found in the phone's gallery.

So why is the main character hacking someone else's mobile phone? Basically, he is under the influence of Homeland Security, who are threatening to harm his parents if he doesn't assist them in digging through and proving that Dickie (who the mobile phone belongs to) engaged in and helped orchestrate terrorist activity that recently took place in the story. The concept of what is ethical is completely thrown out of the window here - and soon, the rest of this story unravels the deeper that the main character digs into Dickie's phone. So where is Dickie in all of this? Well he is imprisoned in the cell next to the main character - and therein lies the whole concept: hacking into someone's phone and digging into all of their personal messages, photos, social accounts and more, all the while feeling guilty while doing it, but having no other choice if the main character also wants to be freed.

Screenshot for Replica on Nintendo Switch

The story revolves around the recent terrorist attack - and Dickie has been arrested for suspicion of being involved, however Homeland Security doesn't have concrete proof. So why is the main character in prison and being threatened to dig out the dirt on Dickie? Well, that is a story that unravels the further that the main character digs in Replica. The main gripe with this whole thing is that the dialogue-writing is corny and too cliched for its own good. For anyone who knows the Powerpuff Girls, imagine if Mojo Jojo was running Homeland Security, and was the main overseer on this journey. With a story revolving around terror attacks, and a future where Big Brother is watching over its civilians - trying hard not to think about the fact that Mojo Jojo is running the show kind of ruins the dark and moody vibe that Replica is going for.

However, moving past that, Replica contains 11 different endings, and the short-game can be replayed over and over to try and uncover new information. What makes Replica quite interesting is that finishing the game and achieving certain endings can actually affect subsequent playthroughs by introducing new tools that change the mechanics somewhat. In other words, Replica is designed to be replayed over, to try and achieve various endings, and go off the beaten path to uncover as much information as possible. Again, despite the corny dialogue, replaying this title with some of the newer features, and trying to unlock the different endings is actually quite fun to do - and it's something that would be cool to see in more games because Somi actually implements this quite well.

Screenshot for Replica on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

Replica is an interesting title that has some really good ideas with how it lays out its puzzles. Rather than focusing on the generic "video game" ones, Somi instead has incorporated more "in real life" problem-solving with trying to crack into someone's phone. However, the overall premise that is dealt with important concepts should've had more heightened tensions that Somi needed, to make the story more believable. The corny dialogue detracted from the terrorism and surveillance-overlord Big Brother plot that needed to be taken a bit more seriously. However, presentation aside, the puzzles are quite clever and are worth at least a look into this experience.

Developer

Somi

Publisher

Playism

Genre

Puzzle

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

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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