Alt-Frequencies: There is always yesterday

Alt-Frequencies: There is always yesterday



I have always been a sucker for unique games or interactive entertainment, as well as any story that involves some sort of time manipulation.  Time travel , whether it is reliving the same period of time over and over again as in groundhog day or Happy Deathday, or uses fancy technology to achieve such as Deloreans or Quantum realm technology. The main theme always seem to come back to one of consequences. What happens if you change the past. 
The premise of Alt-Frequencies definitely plays into that theme. And forces you to make choices that can alter the past and the future.  In the story presented it asks the question “What happens when everyone is stuck in the same time loop, without knowing? “ 

Alt-Frequencies is a video game, by the studio  that was behind the critically acclaimed "A Normal Lost Phone" and "Another Lost Phone: Laura’s Story".  And is available on steam or mobile devices. But as a video game it does not rely on fancy graphics or complicated control schemes. This is an audio-based game, more akin to an interactive radio play that played over multiple scenes in a course of about 2 hours. 

The game screen is build up of a radio that you control and an area that shows you a transcript of what is spoken on each channel. You can switch channels each with its own radio personality. But because you are in a time loop you start over every three minutes. By listening to the different channels you quickly get a sense of what goes on in this fictional world and how people feel. And it becomes clear that at the end of the week the country will vote on whether or not to implement a time loop that somehow is supposed to bring economic prosperity and make lives better for everyone. But then a hidden message on the radio reveals that things are not what they seem and that in fact the time loop has already started. And it is on you to uncover the truth and decide what to do with that truth. 

Alt-Frequencies is an audio-based game, revolving around radio stations that reset every 3 minutes. Populated with all sorts of different characters and personalities, players get an intimate look into the lives of radio hosts, conspiracy theorists, students, politicians, underground activists, train station managers - and a dog. By redistributing information, you change what happens in the next 3 minute time loop and impact both news cycles and the lives of the people behind them. Listen as their personal stories evolve, in a world that has its own complications and needs.


After a quick introduction you learn how to control the radio and more importantly how to record parts of a broadcast and send them back to the radio stations. This acts as a way of calling in to a studio and respond to things asked and commented on during each session. If you get the right message to the right host your will activate a response and change part of the timeloop. Once you changed enough your will move to the next chapter, a new day in the week moving closer and closer to voting day.


While things seem straight forward, you will notice through the game that the changes you make has an effect on the radio hosts demeanor, world view and the message they spread on the radio. But not only that, you start to wonder if where this loop started. It is hard to explain without giving too much away , but for instance you receive information that you can share , which causes that information to be given to you in the first place. The question becomes like the chicken and egg, who was responsible for the information leak in the first place, and should you have shared it in the first place? The effects of looping time can get confusing.

In about 2 hours you come to a conclusion that leaves you still with plenty of questions about the world you just glimpsed as well as the true motivations of its inhabitants. And you can’t help drawing parallels to todays real life politics, news and pop culture and how it all influences your life with or without your participation. 


This game is a bit of a thinking game and requires some life experience to understand the nuances of the stories played out on the radio . And for that I recommend this to be more for 13 and up. Though there is no explicit content , the younger crowd might not really get the full experience and enjoyment. 

There are few different pathways you can take for some short replay value but after that it is pretty much all over for the game with not much reason to return.But if you are like me and these kind of thought experiments, stories and unique gameplay fascinate you, then you should definitely check out alt-frequencies despite its short playtime.

 On steam the game will cost you $7.99 and its is $4.99 on mobile. 

Check out the trailer below.



Game information:
Title: Alt-Frequencies
Developer: Accidental Queens
Publisher: Plug in Digital
Release date: May 16, 2019
Platforms: Steam (PC) , Google Play,IOS App Store.
Version Reviewed: PC (Steam)
Official Site: altfrequencies.com
ESRB: —-


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