The Gallery is the latest FMV game from the mind of Paul Raschid. (The Complex and Five Dates) Published by Cloudhead Games and Aviary Studios. Available on PC (Steam), Playstation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and mobile (IOS, Android)
The Same Story Twice
I was really eager to get hold of The Gallery. This style of game has always interested me and, having played both The Complex and Five Dates I had to test it out for myself.
Two specific periods of Britain’s history are depicted in the story, centered around a portraiture art curator. Due to the social division felt throughout the country and the challenges associated with each period, Argyle Manor’s business struggles in both timelines.
1981 is the year of the UK riots, and we play the female protagonist. In 2021 we follow a male protagonist dealing with the Pandemic. In both timelines, we are named Morgan. The Gallery at Argyle Manor is in desperate need of funds. For a limited time, the Gallery will have the exclusive opportunity to present the latest Nicky Dryden Oaks portrait. This brings in a lot of publicity, but at what personal cost to Morgan?
You watch the story unfold before you, breaking for you to select the response or make a decision. I found that having such a diverse cast really resonated with me. It’s lovely seeing these characters being successful regardless of gender identity.
Both timelines will see a character enter Argyle Manor after Morgan has locked up and offer to paint a portrait of them. This is where the majority of the story is told as you are held hostage.
Graphics & Audio
It is worth mentioning here that I was playing on the Playstation 5 via backwards compatibility. As an FMV game, it looks exactly like you would expect! My partner thought I was actually watching a movie when she came home! There are occasions however that I just wished it would have better quality effects.
There is a part of the game where a painting is blown up however, I never got the sense of something important happening. I do wonder how regardless of everything going on around the two main characters how nothing gets out of place. Morgan’s hair looks perfect even after a quick hook-up with Nicky, likewise with Dorian.
A lot of care has been put into getting the feel of the game correct. The location means there is no need for a big drum and bass soundtrack. So your focus is never taken away from the story, which is a very shrewd move. With The Gallery there is authenticity, and the occasions that there is music are short.
With 18 different endings available there is a statistic available to track how many endings you’ve seen. With a full playthrough coming in at under 5 hours I found myself going through several playthroughs to see what differences I could make.
A well-thought-out FMV experience is available to a broad spectrum of gamers regardless of your chosen format. Currently priced at £11.99 on the PlayStation store, it is definitely worth checking out. Let me know in the comments section below what you thought of The Gallery and whether are you a fan of this FMV experience. Personally, I enjoyed it more than I expected but there were a few things that I almost wish that I had not noticed. Not a game for everyone’s tastes as there are some sensitive topics. It is for this reason that The Gallery gets the coveted Thumb Culture Gold Award
Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.