Tacoma's Intriguing Space Station Mystery Will Leave You Wanting More

Tacoma Fullbright

The second game from Fullbright, the developers of 2015’s Gone Home, Tacoma is a first-person narrative adventure set aboard a high-tech space station in the year 2088. I had the chance to spend some time with Tacoma at the Xbox E3 Showcase, and found myself immediately drawn into the mysterious, tightly constructed world in the brief demo.

You assume the role of Amy Ferrier, a contactor in the employ of Venturis Industries. You’re 200,000 miles away from Earth, all by your lonesome and tasked with investigating how the crew worked and lived, uncovering clues about the disaster that struck the facility.

After signing your life away to Venturis, and acknowledging that revealing any information discovered within will constitute a “felony violation of Orbital Law,” you enter the station, floating in a zero-gravity corridor, with rotating tunnels and portals all around you. Eventually you make your way to the crew area, where a group of people are gathered for a celebration. Suddenly, a collision throws people off their footing. Is it a meteor shower? Probably not, but you can’t be sure just yet.

As you wander around the station, you’re prompted to trigger AI holographic recreations of significant events that occurred throughout the various rooms of the high-tech rabbit warren, days ago, months ago. A couple plots an eventual return back to a spiffy new “hab” in Singapore after their stint in space is finished. Crew members banter in a room decorated to celebrate someone’s “Happy Obsolescence Day.” Another passenger strums a guitar and mournfully sings the 60s heartbreaker ‘Is That All There Is?’ There’s talk of life support systems fading.

I rooted around someone’s bathroom and looked at their toiletries, spied a cat napping in a chair. The demo felt too brief, and I found myself wanting to spend more time in this lived-in little universe, trying to piece together the timeline of events and relationships between the crew members. I feel like I’d want to keep a notepad by my side while playing Tacoma, and I mean that in the best possible way. If you like narrative-forward games, this is definitely a title to keep an eye on.

Check out the extended E3 trailer for Tacoma below:

Fullbright first announced Tacoma at The Game Awards back in 2014. The game had been scheduled to release in 2016, but was delayed in response to feedback after playtesting. Tacoma is available to pre-order now, for under $20, via Steam, GOG and Microsoft. The game debuts Aug. 2.

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