A Janitor’s Quest
Become a time-traveling janitor on a quest to save the world in The Silent Age. This title by House on Fire is a point-and-click adventure game that released nearly a decade ago to rave reviews. Move back and forth seamlessly from the groovy 70s to a post-apocalyptic 2012 to solve puzzles and prevent a dystopian future.
Players take on the role of Joe, a janitor working at the Archon Research Facility in 1972. One day while Joe is cleaning a lab, he comes across a dying man who tells him he is from the future and traveled back in time to stop a catastrophic event. The time traveler hands Joe a time-traveling device before passing away. Throughout the game, Joe uses this device to move between 1972 and a post-apocalyptic 2012. The title consists of 10 chapters split between two episodes. Episode one is free. However, episode two will set you back a few bucks, though it’s worth the price.
The Silent Age offers engaging puzzles. You’ll have to travel back and forth in time frequently, as solving a puzzle in 1972 often involves utilizing an item from 2012, and vice versa. For example, Joe comes across an apartment door covered in poison ivy in the future. However, Joe can poison the soil in 1972 to prevent it from growing. The puzzles are challenging enough to be entertaining while avoiding becoming so difficult as to frustrate. Joe will need to use tools creatively to solve puzzles. It’s not always as simple as finding a key to unlock a door. One puzzle requires Joe to use an enema pump in a fashion that is clearly not intended by the manufacturer.
Groovy Vibes and an Average Joe
The Silent Age offers a vibrant 70s atmosphere. Bright wallpapers, disco balls and groovy retro hairstyles are just some of atmospheric touches House on Fire brings to this title. Each little nod to the early 70s serves to further immerse the player. In contrast, the modern world is run down and bleak. The post-apocalyptic environments are devoid of color when compared to the vivid 1970 surroundings. And, of course, the dystopian modern day is silent — hence the game’s title. While you may come across others in 1972, the only people you cross paths with in the future are corpses. The stark contrast between the two time periods emphasizes the importance of Joe’s mission.
Joe himself has a rather bland personality, but that actually works for this title. Joe doesn’t have anything special going for him other than being gifted with a time machine. By making the protagonist an average Joe, players can seamlessly imagine themselves as the player character.
The Silent Age is a unique and satisfying point-and-click adventure offering a compelling plot. Joe the janitor is someone we can all relate to. The stunning 70s atmosphere adds depth to the title. Most importantly, the puzzles are engaging and offer a decent challenge. If you’re looking for an immersive puzzler that won’t have you banging your head against the wall in frustration, dive into The Silent Age.
Is It Hardcore?
The Silent Age is an atmospheric point-and-click adventure featuring challenging yet entertaining puzzles.