PS4 Review: The Gallery

Can you survive The Gallery?

An art curator is held hostage by a portraitist who threatens to detonate a bomb unless their demands are met. ‘The Gallery’ contains two interactive narratives – set in 1981 (with a female protagonist) and 2021 (with a male protagonist). Both eras are significant periods of socio-political unrest in Britain and there are distinct similarities and differences across the two stories. The viewer must make decisions in a bid to better understand and escape their captor. However, it soon becomes apparent that not only the life of the protagonist hinges on these decisions, but also the lives of others.

The Gallery isn’t your typical “Choose your own adventure” game. It’s one of the few FMV games that have become more popular over the past few years with hit games like Her Story, The Complex and Immortality. The Gallery lets you pick two different time periods but the story between both are similar and different. The 1981 story will give you a female protagonist at the art curator, while the 2021 story gives you a male art curator and each are set in Britain, which had its own issues in the 80s and does so currently, regardless of your own politics.

It’s interesting to see the modern approach with how they handle issues like Brexit and Covid-19. I can imagine a lot of the scenes were filmed during tough periods of the pandemic, even in both periods, but they were handled professionally overall, and all actors involved did a great job in highlighting the unrest of the country from different walks of life. The choices you make will decide who lives and dies, not just yourself and while it isn’t as impactful as other FMV games, The Gallery does definitely leave its own mark.

Getting all distinct possibilities will take several playthroughs and I highly recommend that you do, especially for trophy hunters. The story itself is well told like I mentioned, and the acting is pretty impressive too. The locations filmed are also well picked with some great camera work to boot, there’s also a great level of artwork to be found as you would expect from a game called The Gallery, but naturally this will only appeal if you are an art-lover.

The Verdict

The Gallery is an interesting FMV game that does well with what it does, especially with the time periods it is set in. As a Brit myself, it’s interesting to see how things like Brexit were talked about, especially since even now are still frankly, a mess. The choices you make will leave an impact overall and the game is memorable from start to finish. While it isn’t as memorable as the likes of The Complex, it’s still a triumph overall.

Score: 8.0