Mateusz Skutnik, a polish artist and game developer, the maker of many games and comic books, and i’m a fan of his work since 2005 when he released first game in Submachine series.
But the machines i want to talk about are not in the Submachine games, but in Covert Front series, which is free and works on Linux, Mac and Windows.
The series follow Kara, a secret agent who investigate the disappearance of scientists, it’s early 1900s and the world is different than ours but not too different, and there is the threat of world war.
What makes Mr. Skutnik games different is the atmosphere, the music, the places he design, the details he put on things that have nothing to do with the puzzles but add flavor to the game, all of that is unique to him and i can’t put it in more words, you have to experience them yourself to understand.
Covert Front games are point & click adventure games, you only need to pay attention to the details and click every clickable thing, live the story and enjoy reaching the end of each episode.
What i like most about this series is the machines in the game or the gadgets, they make me wish they’re real and sometimes i wish to make them, many of them look realistic but not real, i almost feel i know this machine but there is nothing like it in reality.
What follows here is screenshots for some of the machines and my comments on them … you really don’t want to waste your time reading this, but thank you if you did 🙂
A typewriter keyboard with one line screen at the top of it, there is no machine like that in early 1900s yet the design make is feel like it so belong to that era, two level in the sides have a function, one is to clear the screen the other is to execute what written in the screen.
In the 80s some companies made what we may call today smart typewriter, an electric device with a tiny screen which allow you to write and correct any mistake before print it on paper, sometimes they are called word processor.
And now there are few products offer a simple writing machine, for people who want a tool for writing not a distracting machine.
I don’t know what to call this device, sender? teletexter? telemail? the games didn’t show this device except once and for few seconds and yet i can’t stop thinking about it.
Kara connect it to a computer, then write a message then press the button to send a message, the light turn green for a second to confirm sending the message and that’s it … look, i know i’m not rational here, this thing is way more interesting than any smartphone!
The computer which Kara use to send a message, it looks like something from the 40s, when computers needed buildings and roofs!
A punched card machine for a library … now punched cards is old technology so it’s not hard to believe such machine could exist in early 1900s, the screen of course is fiction at this point of the story, but all of that is not important i mean … Punched Cards! for years i’m dreaming of making a machine that use punched cards for something … anything.
Punched cards are still in use today, they are simple way to save data, and from time to time i find myself reading about them again, thinking of some way to use them.
Drawer with yet-to-be-used punched cards.
When Kara use the punched card on this huge machine, the arm rotate to a bookshelf and take a book to put it in the right section where the character stands, this machine is a librarian of sort! I prefer humans.
Now this out of my mind, i can have some rest, but honestly i’ll never stop thinking about punched cards! they are magical for me, maybe because i never saw them in real life.