Attentant 1942 is a World War II game placed in Czechoslovakia where you are trying to learn more about your grandfather’s experience through other survivors’ stories.
A copy of this game was provided for the purposes of this review.
The game combines drawn animations and real-life video to create the present day and flashbacks that tell the story. You interview survivors to gain information and when in the past there are minigames that help you experience the different events. Not only do you learn about your own family’s experience, but you also learn about the events of the war as a whole.
The gameplay is specifically minigames in the flashbacks to earn coins, including deciphering a diary and hiding documents from the Gestapo. The interviews are a game of choosing the right dialogue options to gain the specific information you need. And as you speak with people, you’ll unlock more opportunities to learn more from others.
There wasn’t much of a tutorial, so I did feel like I was stumbling through the game initially. Some things could have had some better explanations, like what exactly coins do or an earlier explanation of objectives. Since I specifically played the Switch version and it was not originally developed for that platform, it could use tweaking. I also find that in order to keep me engaged, I need to really know why I am doing something. And I’m not sure I ever knew why I was trying to figure out the grandfather’s story.
Once I got used to the mechanics and knew better what I needed to do, the game is very straightforward and easy to play. The highlight for me is really the artwork for the flashbacks. It has so much character and really fits the tone of the game and the moments it depicts.
Attentant 1942 is very much an educational game that would definitely be great in classrooms. It makes a difficult topic easier to approach and engage in. The game succeeds at that, it just has a small bump at the start with it lacking a proper tutorial. But once you know what to do and how to do it, it is easier to get immersed in the game and the stories.
Attentant 1942 is available on PC, mobile, and the Switch.
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