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PS4 / PS5 Game Review

Pack shot

Of Bird and Cage


Format: PS4 / PS5
Publisher: All in! Games
Developer: Caprica Production
RRP: £7.99
Click here to buy -
Age Restrictions: 18+
Release Date: 30 June 2022

Experience the overwhelming power of metal music like never before. Featuring artists from (ex) Guns N' Roses, Epica, Within Temptation, and many others. Music by Arnold Nesis. Dive into a dark, twisted game specifically tailored to its music. Let symphonic metal lead you through a two-hour-long story of trauma, violence, and madness based on Beauty and the Beast. Play as Gitta Barbot, a 25 year-old drug addict, who tries to escape the physical and mental prison of her captor. Make quick choices that will have dire consequences and watch how your actions reveal new paths while struggling to keep your sanity...

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Of Bird and Cage plays like an interactive movie

Of Bird and Cage is an interesting, novel idea for a game. I say "game" but it's more an interactive movie with an album of music set as a backdrop. I liked the idea, but the story was just so bleak and depressing and in the current world climate yet another downer element isn't something most will be eager to seek out.

As the game moves forwards you get to play various scenarios in Gitta Barbot's bleak life. She's a 25 year-old drug addict who also has an abusive, alcoholic father... who appears to have also sexually abused her. So far, not a huge barrel of laughs. If you don't get your fix regularly then the world around you starts to get distorted with random fires appearing. So you're tasked with finding drugs to inject yourself (Don't do drugs kids).

There's the occasional minigame, but these are few and far between and really easy. For example in one instance you have to get 5 bullseyes on a dartboard, but once you line up your sights you can simply keep pressing "throw" and each dart will hit its mark.

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Follow the journey of Gitta Barbot, a 25 year-old drug addict

I think the biggest issue is how the game takes itself too seriously... almost as though the developers where hoping to pick up awards for being deep, dark, self reflective and challenging the gaming arena by tackling serious domestic issues.

There were a lot of parallels to be drawn with Life is Strange... although Of Bird and Cage can't hold a candle to Life is Strange. They both feature a strong female protagonist who has suffered in their short life. Both games use music in an immersive way previously not exploited widely. And both are basically interactive movies with a few choices that slightly effect the ongoing storyline. However Life is Strange has a strong storyline that's easy to invest in, whereas Of Bird and Cage starts from a point where you don't really know what's happening and it's a struggle to get onboard when you're playing a junkie with no real back story - even if it is revealed over time. Of course, the story does move on from its bleak beginnings, but even that has been heavily borrowed from Beauty and the Beast.

Graphically the game looks pretty dated (even though it could be claimed they're going for an art house retro vibe) and the vocal talents range from passable to well below par. So... the main selling point, the music, is really where the developers are hoping you'll focus. Sadly it doesn't really work. Some of the music doesn't really seem to fit in the scenarios it's used in and worse still, to try and fit any eventuality it seems that the remit for the music was make it as bland as possible in order to work in any scene.

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Escape the physical and mental prison of your captor

Even the sales pitch (as posted on the Playstation Store) seems to be focusing on the music. And while the bands are metal bands, what they deliver more often than not appears to be a little diluted. It's almost as though the developers wanted to not turn non-metal fans off.

In the end it feels like an album which has had a hastily constructed game tacked onto it.

While it's original, not to mention a huge gamble, I can't help thinking this was a missed opportunity to do something really revolutionary.


Nick Smithson

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£10 Playstation Network Card