Sense – 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story has had a very rocky start in the PC gaming world. Just after its release, the developers Suzaku requested it be pulled from sale due to game-breaking bugs. Huge props to the developers here, as they didn’t just leave it. They immediately took action to fix the issues. I also had a chance to speak with the devs when I had fallen behind myself, and they are lovely people. But that’s not why we’re here. We’re here to talk about Sense – 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story!
So, what is Sense – 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story?
Like the title suggests, Sense is a 2.5D cyberpunk ghost adventure, set in 2083. It’s a side scroller, with elements of survival horror. With inspiration taken from Fatal Frame and Clock Tower, Sense mixes the cyberpunk aesthetic with traditional Cantonese folklore in the hopes of returning the horror genre to its roots. Follow Mei along in an attempt to solve a 100 year old mystery and as she questions her perception of reality.
Let’s Get Sense-y
Where to start, where to start… let’s go with graphics. This game looks epic. The cyberpunk style is implemented really well, and the outside world looks genuinely interesting. The more dilapidated world also keeps this cool vibe about it. The character design is also really well done, and the ghosts look genuinely frightening. Honestly, I can hugely see the Fatal Frame influence here.
The gameplay is also relatively simple, move left to right and vice versa. Interact with items and the environment, hide when you need to. Honestly, there isn’t a whole lot to say here. I did play this on PC, but my lazy self used a controller so I could game from bed. Controller support is pretty solid, although Steam does give a warning about configuration.
The little things
I need to preface this paragraph by saying I was really enjoying the story, and honestly pretty much everything about this game. I could not progress through this game. When I got about an hour or so into the story, I died for the first time. That’s when everything started going downhill for me.
I watched so many videos, read through so many things, and I could not get around this issue. No matter where I looked, I had already interacted with everything in the environment. Everything that could be picked up? Already picked up. Could I use it? Nope! Either I couldn’t enter codes, or I couldn’t use items that were ESSENTIAL to moving forward. It was like things weren’t going into my inventory. No matter what I tried (including resets and restarts), I would just keep getting blocked from moving forward, always in the same spot.
This is where Benjamin and Kay come in. Benjamin and Kay are the studio owners, and at this point in time are my favourite people. When things kept going wrong for me, I took a chance and reached out to Suzaku on Twitter. On Sunday night, Benjamin and Kay spent a good hour chatting with me and troubleshooting what could possibly be happening. For whatever reason, there was an event or two that just wasn’t being triggered while I played.
It took a few tries but working along with these lovely people and lots of running back and forth, but the events all triggered correctly and I was able to keep going. Their kindness and patience really made me feel comfortable contacting as well. Honestly, I went back to the game even happier than when I started in the first place. I cannot thank you guys enough!
When I first started writing this review, I was honestly gutted. I had contacted but was waiting for a reply, and I needed to start the first draft. I knew I was still going to wait for the response before going ahead. And honestly, I’m beyond glad I did wait. Sense introduced me to a totally new use of the cyberpunk aesthetic, and it combined it with my favourite genre. Between the story and the character designs, I was hooked. And when I was able to make more progress, I fell even more in love with the game. Being totally honest, I think I have a crush on Mei now.
Something I mentioned earlier that really stood out for me is the influences of older games. I connected so much more when I learned about this, and then I couldn’t stop noticing little things, and that all just added to my experience. Sense – 不祥的预感: A Cyberpunk Ghost Story is a legitimately fun experience that truly combines traditional folklore and horror in a way to keep players immersed.
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