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YMMV / Beneath a Steel Sky

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  • Awesome Music: There are several definite ear worms which you'll undoubtedly start humming along to, but the very best music is found on the CD32 version, where the title screen (also "LINCspace") music with its synthesised horn section is so catchy you might not want to start the game until it's looped a few dozen times.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The courtroom scene, where justice takes the form of a gameshow, with Rob defending Hobbins. Seriously, where the hell did that come from? (It's also entirely skippable and no bearing on the plot.)
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  • Cult Classic
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Joey is considerably popular thanks to his Deadpan Snarker moments.
    • Gilbert Lamb.
  • Epileptic Trees: Played for laughs, usually. Rob's crackpot theories on the nature of the game world are priceless.
  • Fridge Horror: Late in the game, Robert has to get his own fingerprints exchanged for Colson's, just to pass a scanner lock. Imagine, however, what it must be like to never have your own fingerprints ever again. The fact that the back-alley Dr. Burke is whom you consult for this doesn't help.
    • While Pushing Up Roses mentions some Artificial Atmospheric Actions happening in her video review of the game, she points out a rather common scene - for Robert and Anita to be talking with a random worker standing right next to them. Given that Anita ends up dead later on, it actually comes off as Paranoia Fuel since that person could have ratted you out.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • Moral Event Horizon: Reich nuking Rob's entire tribe at the start of the game. Even when you see his fate, you can't feel for the guy.
  • Narm: Rob's reaction to the destruction of his family...
    • At the climax, there should really be a long pause in Foster's line after his father dies. As it is, he just seems to get over it in record time:
    Father! FATHER! It's too late. It's over now.
  • Nightmare Fuel: There are several examples throughout the game, which are best left for the player to discover.
    • The line "There's something in there... something HORRIBLE!" about the subway beast sums up a lot of moments.
    • The Non Standard Game Over at the end. Rob gets plugged into LINC, struggles for a few seconds, then apparently has his entire mind and self erased and replaced with LINC.
  • Nightmare Retardant: The aforementioned meeting with the terrifying subway beast (usually accompanied by no music or sound effects at all) can be made less scary if you leave the jukebox on while leaving for the subway tunnel, and save once inside. If you're killed once (as many first time players are likely to be) and restore your save, your monster encounter will be accompanied by... the swinging smooth jazz sounds of the club's resident Hot Club Quartet.
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  • Porting Disaster: The CD32 version, which includes the slow loading times due to slow CD drive, buggy save files, and a tendency to freeze the game. The only single redeeming aspect is the music, and that's it.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: The game's engine allowed for multiple NPCs onscreen at once, but also allowed them to continue doing their usual routine while the player was having a conversation with them or interacting with the environment. This at the time was impressive among adventure games, though nowadays it loses its magic since only a handful of screens even have NPCs walk around while you converse with another character.
  • Squick: The more you know about LINC, the more you'll be grossed out by it. Even Rob is disgusted by many of the things he sees, and doesn't mind telling you about it.
    • When you get to LINC's core, the walls are covered in Meat Moss and fleshy tentacles. After the rest of the game has been set in a fairly realistic (if futuristic) city, there is nothing to prepare you for this, and it's terrifying.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Seeing Rob's tribe family being nuked by Reich at the start of the game is heart wrenching.
    • The death of Anita.
    • A meta example. A BASS fan tried searching Dave Cummins (one of the writers as well as the music composer of the game) for years only to find out that Dave died a long time ago. When Charles Cecil heard the news, he said he wanted to mend his relationship with Dave and offer him a chance to create a sequel.
  • This Is Your Premise on Drugs: Take one internet, mix it with equal parts virtual reality and acid flashbacks then serve. Then you'll be close to what LINCspace is, what with the giant sentry eyeballs and coloured ying yang pieces which act as passwords. And some other stuff that is even more batshit insane, like dropping an angel statue (your brute-force attack) on a crusader (a security program).
  • What an Idiot!: Rob won't put his hands anywhere near a huge pneumatic press, but a live socket? Sure! Why not?
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: Very possibly done deliberately, but in the updated version, there is precisely ONE person with an Australian accent in a game set twenty minutes into the Australia. Almost all the other accents are British/Irish regional accents, with the exception of a French doorman and the protagonist...who sounds American.
  • The Woobie: Rob has had so much bad luck that it's hard not to feel sorry for him.


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