Sir, You are Being Hunted is a stealth-based romp through a dreary, steampunk influenced landscape, tasking players with recovering the lost pieces of the device whose malfunctioning is responsible for transporting you there in the first place. Don’t fret though, there are many a local robot here to keep you company. Robots just as British as they are, well . . . homicidal. And here is where the point of the game lies. You are being hunted.
While your main task is to recover the seventeen pieces of the machine in order to rebuild it and make your way back home, don’t just pay mind to the parts themselves. Sir is as much a game of survival as it is exploration and stealth. Collecting food and resources is important, and neglecting to search for them will get you no closer to home than if you hadn’t the parts themselves. Scavenging for food, medicine, ammo and even the guns to make use of it, is a major element to the game. Sir is a survival experience as much as anything else, and a good one at that. You don’t just trip over your resources. Often times it is a fight over obtaining just that bit of water needed to move forward, normally found in small villages and patrolled by those murderous metal men that are making your life so complicated.
They are the reason you are bleeding, they are the reason you have to take up half your pack with weaponry instead of goods to sustain yourself, and they are the reason said goods can be so bloody hard to come by. It doesn’t help that the game just gets harder; the enemies getting tougher, smarter and larger in number after collecting more and more of the valued parts. By the end of the game, the experience becomes a maddening attempt at going unnoticed, where every step can spell immediate doom for the player. It’s actually quite compelling. They’ve certainly nailed the sort of experience they were aiming for with this sort of title
While the game certainly presents itself primarily as a stealth game, there’s more on offer than simply sneaking your way around enemies. As previously stated, there’s also some gunplay! Gunplay that they’ve pulled off rather well, mind you. There’s a solid, if small, list of arms on offer; ranging from handguns, to rifles, to shotguns to the blunderbuss. Gunplay becomes less and less viable the further into the game you get, however, and you will find yourself depending more and more on the items that assist you in your stealthy ways than you will these weapons.
The game is no technical showcase; the cartoonish art-style and moody landscape, procedurally generated as it may be, make for an interesting world to explore. I’ve always said art style can go a long way, and this game is no exception to that thought. Enemy designs are wonderfully flamboyant, the varying locations on offer all set their own unique tone, and most of the items and weapons you come across are just ever-so-slightly embellished, giving a bit of character to just about everything found in the game, even if the visuals themselves are lacking a certain level of fidelity.
Sir is a fantastic game. A highly replayable experience that is always at least a little bit different each time you play. Gameplay, design, visuals . . . everything about this title screams polish and is a fine example of the Early Access program done right. The developers actually listened to the players and what they got in return was a fantastic final product. At its $20 price point, it’s hard for me not to give this one a glaring recommendation. The talented men over at Big Robot Ltd should be proud of this one. Sirs, you have created a fine game.