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The Elusive First Review

  • Irili
  • 05/21/2011 05:07 PM
World's Dawn (demo) is a cute farming simulation game similar to the Harvest Moon series. You take control of a farmer (male or female) and proceed to take over the farm in Sugar Blossom for a change of pace.

I won't say what the story is besides running a farm. However, I will say that you, the player, do not discover the real reason why you are invited to take over the farm until day 5. I like that. It makes sense to me that Paxel, the guy who convinced you to come to the farm in the first place, does not explain his motives until you start to get to know the people around the village. In this way, the character has started to form a bit of a bond with the other villagers and would feel some loss in abandoning them.

Other than that, the story doesn't really seem important. Like the Harvest Moon series, the emphasis is on the day to day farm work rather than any big plot.

The graphics are gorgeous. What else can I say? I like the way the maps are set up. The wild life is just that: wild. However, the maps don't feel cluterred.
I liked the original artwork for the facesets. The eyes seem to be off in some way or another but they still added to the atmosphere of the game.

Gentle, soothing and fitting for the game. I also liked the stereo that you can buy for your home.

I found that the walking speed was a bit too slow. I was using the running key most of the time. This of course decreased the EN (energy) bar. I was upset by this until I found the hot spring. The hot spring restored all of my EN at no monetary cost. However, a slight speed up in walking speed would be nice. I also found myself running back to different people to double check what I needed to finish the side quest available in the demo. I didn't find this to be a make or break thing; just food for thought.

The maps on screen were very helpful. So much in fact that I would have liked a little mini-map of my very own. In all seriousness though, I'd get lost in a paper bag. I need more than road signs and a "You are here" sign here and there.
Farming was easy and straight-foward. You plant some seeds, you water them, you harvest them. Don't fix what isn't broken.

I never got a chance to get anything from my livestock, however I did notice the ease of moving the animals in and out of barn as well as feeding them. This is duly noted and appreciated.

I like the option of the clothing system. It's easy to use and adds a bit of individuality to the hero/heroine.

Lockball was interesting but overall infuriating. I found myself tripping over my own fingers and helping rather than hindering the opponent. Maybe adding an easier opponent to play against will help to ease the player into learning the game. Either that or I'm retarded at these kind of mini-games (Hint: 20% former, 80% later).

The knapsack was organized and easy to use. Again, don't fix what isn't broken.

Things I hope to see in the full game:
- A book/menu to keep up with the villagers feelings for you
- Recipe Book
- A mini map
- Please explain that you get your money by mail when shipping items. I never would have known if I hadn't checked on a whim.
- A way to keep track of my quest information.

Things I loved:
- Easy farming system
- Flora and Fauna on the map
- Knapsack/Inventory
- Livestock interactions
- Getting paid through the mail
- Original art (facesets)
- Hot Spring

In conclusion, this demo was pretty snazzy. If you liked the Harvest Moon series, you'll like this game as well. The main brunt of the gameplay such as farming and interacting with the villagers is smooth and easy. The graphics are pleasing and while not particularly memorable, the music is fitting for the game. I can't wait to play the game in its entirety.
I give this game a 4/5.


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A review!! And a great one at that! First of all, thanks so much for taking the time to write this up and submit it. I truly appreciate it.

I'm glad you liked the way the story is told so far, as you said it does kind of play second fiddle to the day-to-day activities on the farm. I wanted the maps and village to have a very defined atmosphere, hopefully I accomplished that with the graphics. I'll see what I can do about the walking speed (I'm planning to offer a horse at some point) as well as the other great bits of advice you suggested.

LockBall is fun once you get the hang of it, but I definitely am looking into creating a tutorial sort of introduction or a "practice mode" instead of just throwing you into it.

Again, thanks so much for the review and the recommendation.
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