As Dusk Falls, something tells me it’s going to be a long night of choices.

This game did not get the kind of attention I had hoped it would get, because I think it’s a very good game to play, especially those interested in choice-based decisions that are reminiscent of Detroit: Become Human and the Life is Strange series.

Who is this game for?

Game length

Around 8 hours for a main playthrough


Explanation to Negative Feedback

Some actions are questionable

Sometimes there are downtime moments, such as when you’re waiting on your wife and kid to return home, and in these downtime moments you have to do something, so you can try to fix the air conditioner or mix a bowl of food. They’re a little strange and boring, but…there’s not too many moments like this.

It’s just filler content.

Explanation to Positive Feedback

8-player mode

It’s amazing that you can get so many people together to play a game like this, and while yes, it can be a family game, it’s definitely not one I’d let kids play due to its violent and heavy moments.

Accessibility options

There are a variety of things you can check off in the settings under accessibility, including an optimal color choice for the on-screen ui, for the color blind folks. Also, if some people can’t see that well, there’s a narration option for text-to-speech regarding the non-spoken parts.

And if you want to play with the family, but they aren’t gamers like the lot of us, you can extend the WTE timers to give them more time to understand what they’re clicking on.

Great characters

Sometimes you come into these games not expecting much from the characters or the voices behind them, but they characters in this game are perfect. There’s no impression of someone possibly being too much of an amateur in their voice acting to deter gamers from buying it, and they all had their own personalities, of course, meaning you damn well know who you like and don’t like.

So many choices

So many routes to take with the choices you go for, and I love games like this. Even a choice that you think won’t really have much of an impact sometimes has more of an impact than you realize.

At the end of a chapter, you get a timeline of choices you took, making it very reminiscent of Detroit: Become Human’s timeline. You understand the moments where you didn’t choose something, and you understand just how many endings you’ve missed.

Links Worth Checking Out

  • Nothing here

As Dusk Falls Review

TL;DR Review

No worries about this game being a slow build-up to any kind of tension or trouble, because right off the bat you can tell there’s tension in the family, and not only that, but because some jerks in a truck ran us off the road, we landed in an even more tense situation…with the same jerks!

Whaddya know, right?

But yeah, once sh*t hits the fan, the choices you make really fans those flames.

Like with a lot of choice-based games–specifically David Cage’s and many from Supermassive Games–you switch perspectives, so you’re not always playing as one person, like you would with the Life is Strange series. This also pieces things together a bit more for us with going back and forth in time from the past to the present.

While a lot of these choices are kind of subtle, the really important choices that are going to shift things in a major way have a pulsing red screen to them without a time limit on them, so you’re allowed to take your time in figuring out how you want to play a certain scene out.

I hate to say it, but I didn’t think much about the soundtrack to As Dusk Falls aside from on the start screen, and at the end of every third chapter. That’s when the songs hit hard.

As far as the art, I liked it. It looks unique and stands out against a realistic background to have brushstroke type of characters in the foreground. I mean, maybe it’s not actual artwork and just still images of people with a filter over them to give this unique look, but still.

I found myself struggling to confirm if this should be labeled as a visual novel, but no. There are animations to things, it’s just a blur effect when characters do move.

So it’s not technically a movie, but it’s not exactly a novel. It’s a blend between the two.

In-Depth Review with Spoilers (wip)

Due to this being a choice-based game, I did a full playthrough based on the choices I wanted to make and talk about them. Any choices I didn’t make on the first playthrough, I might make after I’ve completed the game just to see which choice does what.

I have a problem upon first starting this game.

On the title screen, the music is really good and I was enjoying the song, especially because there’s a singer and it’s not just instrumental. However, this game uses text to speech, which then interrupts the song with saying to click specific buttons to continue. But I didn’t want to continue. I wanted to listen to the song.

And it’ll keep repeating itself for you to click one of the buttons mentioned on the screen.

You can turn off the narrative for this, but even if the narrative is off, it still does this at the title screen no matter if it’s off or not.

You implemented the music, let me enjoy it!

As Dusk Falls
As Dusk Falls

When the game starts , we’re met with a girl named Zoe Walker who’s floating underwater, reminiscing on how she wanted to be a journalist, but now she wants to find that moment where memories disappear and the world becomes silent.

I’m pretty sure that’s the point where you’re close to blacking out, but with all the flashbacks we’re getting during the time she’s underwater, I can see how that peaceful moment is alluring.

Though I wouldn’t condone it as it’s risking death and most people just seek counseling.

Does that make this one of those bad habits people form in order to get away from their past? Like you’ve got some people that turn to alcoholism, while others do drugs to block the pain of what they’ve been through. Is this the same as that, only a bit more extreme?

She must’ve been getting a lot of practice since she says it usually takes 90 seconds to hit the point she’s reaching for. I don’t think I can hold my breath for half that, but I’ve never had a need to.

In fact, I remember using an incentive spirometer I think when I was in the hospital, and I could not get that piston or whatever to hit near the top, so I daresay that’s the first clue that I’d be the first to run out of breath if I was chilling underwater with someone.

We eventually phase out to the past where we’re back in May 29th of 1998, at a small rest stop by Route 66 in Arizona.

When I say small, I mean small. It’s just got a bench underneath a shelter with a single bathroom. I don’t think I’d even want to try to use that bathroom given the fact that we have no idea who takes care of it, or if anyone takes care of it, or when the last time someone took care of it was.

I mean the bench in the shade is nice if you want to get out of the car and stretch your legs for a bit.

But I’d probably use the bathroom behind the bathroom rather than in it. xD

The background has a more realistic vibe to it, and it’s only when we get to see the characters that the stylized portion of the game comes into view. It could be a filter the used over images of actual actors, but I still like the brushstroke feel of them. Like they aren’t super detailed and are kind of messy, but it makes a unique picture.

The art in this game is like the equivalent of someone waking up with bed head and just dealing with it instead of fixing it properly.

And I’m a fan of it.

Anyway, we’ve got Zoe as a small child sitting on the bench with her dad, Vince, wanting to play a game. While her eyes are closed, we have to choose a specific object in the environment for her to name the color of. What choice you make doesn’t really matter here, but I picked the old fence.

It’s here we kind of get some idea on the characters. Vince is going to be a goofy kind of dad that might go along with his daughter’s ideas, and his daughter is pretty damn perceptive.

She didn’t just go with the answer that the fence was white, she went beyond that.

Wait–it’s brown–but the paint was white!

Okay sweetie, I didn’t ask for an in-depth observation of the color. But hey, if that’s a look into how much she pays attention in this game, then I might be screwed.

We give her one last chance to win the game by asking us about an item to see if we get it right or not. Here Vince says he’ll take one more look around, but we don’t get to look around the environment like we had when we were choosing something for her to guess the color of. Instead the camera just watches the both of us sitting at the bench with not much to look at environmental-wise.

Off in the distance we have a water tower and a solitary tree that someone is standing beside. Aside from that we have the handicap sign that’s pointing to the bathroom entrance. There’s a toy beside Zoe that we can’t really see that well and then her backpack, plus us and the bench we’re sitting on.

After a short moment, we’re left with a timed choice:

  • Ready
  • Not ready

You’ve got a good 20 second timer here, so the game is generous with giving you time to think on your choice. Of course, I believe this can be changed in the game menu, if you wanted. At least when it comes to accessibility, I know that you can extend the timer if you happen to be playing with someone who’s not well-versed in the art of gaming and fast-choices.

I chose Ready, because now’s as good as time as any.

She asks how many stars are on her backpack and of course it would be the thing that’s been sitting dead center of the camera for that good 20 seconds of decision-making.

You’ve got a timed choice:

  • “Five”
  • “Six”
  • “Seven”
  • PEEK

The PEEK option actually shows up after a moment of waiting, so sometimes in the event of choices being made, it’s best to wait a second before jumping to an option, because something else might come up.

I of course chose the PEEK option because I can’t remember crap and I’m a cheater. Just ask anyone who’s played Monopoly with me.

Since she called me out on my peeking, I decided to also choose “Seven” because I didn’t want her to whine that I’m a cheater. So now I just made her happy and she’s not going to pout when we get back in the car.

Now here’s the interesting thing.

You might think that the choice I made here won’t really have any consequences because it was just the game teaching us about how the choices are going to show up and how much time we might have and how to pick one. You’d be wrong. She calls me out on being a cheater at a later point, which could’ve been bad for me if it didn’t go so okay.

So even these little choices that don’t have a huge impact, might have some impact in a future scene.

I kind of like that.

In some games that give you choices, sometimes the choices just bring about a change in dialogue and that’s it. There’s no ground-breaking effect, which is a little annoying when you want to play choice-based games.

But that’s not the case here, obviously, and I’m not saying that this means every single choice has some kind of effect on future dialogue, but…maybe it does?

We get a new character, Michelle, who’s woken up from a nap in her car after her daughter excitedly yells about how she won.

This reminds me of back when my parents were still working and I’d get home from work before them, all tired, and sit in the car and end up falling asleep for a little bit while it was still warm out. That was back when I parked outside the garage though. Now I’ve got a spot in the garage and end up sleeping underneath a heating blanket instead of the sun.

As soon as we get in the car, Michelle asks us if we’re doing okay, and by the stunted conversation I’d say no, despite the fact that we say yeah. It’s so awkward that even Zoe asks why the both of us are being weird.

At first it’s like, uh-oh, is this a marriage problem? Especially since he says, “We’re good,” but we just don’t have enough context to really confirm that.

It’s not a tense conversation, more like a deflated one that ends as quickly as it began.