Mainlining is a great looking pixel art point and click hacking experience from Rebelephant and Merge Games. Learn if it’s a game you should dig into in our Mainlining review!
Mainlining is a point and click computer hacking game. After the introduction of the BLU Pill Act and the Secret Intelligence Service reestablishment of MI7, the government has full access to all online data, which makes the game question the technoethics of all this. Is it acceptable for any organization in the world to have the power to view all of your data – and I do mean all of it – at any time? What if… someone else ends up getting the key? Your goal in Mainlining is to link people to cybercrime by finding their location, the evidence that points to the perpetrator, make sure there is plenty of watertight evidenced that cannot be broken down by the defense lawyers.
Every case must be scrutinized, with no stone left unturned. You should find your groove and flow so that you don’t end up missing any vital incriminating evidence that could potentially put a criminal away for a very long time. As is the case with many point and click games, there are some puzzles for you to solve in Mainlining. You’ll search the internet for clues, read the downloaded case files, and sometimes you’ll have to do a bit of hacking on your end to locate the secret files that are hidden to find the identities of perpetrators, which is no easy task.
The game does a good job of making you feel like as if you’re actually using a computer system with all of the things you’d run into if you were taking on this in real life. The computer sounds and pings are all very authentic, as is opening and minimizing tabs to look at previous tabs you were looking into. Using the analog stick to control things as you move the cursor around on the screen feels a bit off, especially when you’re trying to scroll down pages – accuracy is not what you’ll get. The good news is that you can use touchscreen controls, so you have that option at your disposal if you want to give it a go.
I really like the concept of Mainlining, but I do think that the controls should have been tinkered with for a bit to make them feel tighter on Nintendo Switch. It’s going to be a game that not everyone is going to dig due to its control scheme. The game’s look and feel are great, making you feel as if you were using an OS that will remind you of what you’d use on your PC nowadays. There are several puzzles to complete, lots of info to find and review, and even some hacking to do so that you can find what could be called the bad guys in this story. The fact that the game was created with PC gaming in mind is apparent after playing it on Nintendo’s console, and hopefully, the controls are tightened up and improved by way of a patch.
This Mainlining review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Merge Games.