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Atmospheric in a good way; vague story in a bad way.

It's hard to review a game like this. Given that it was made for a contest with a short deadline, I'm inclined to give it some leniency.

My experience with RM2K is pretty limited. I don't have the experience of many others who have sifted through the enormous catalog of games on this site. My perspective comes almost solely from having played commercially released games. That being said, Novella has one of the best menus I've come across. It's simple, I know, but I thought it was a nice touch to have a character that gets moved around to serve as your cursor.

Right as the story (if you can really call it that) began, I was left perplexed as to what was going on. Each short scene centers around what appears to be the separation of a man and a woman. The faces are vacant, but given the way they're dressed, I assumed that they had been together for a very long time. Over the years, they appear to have drifted apart. The story arc seems to follow the man - either through his memories or through partitions of his own mind - as he tries to figure out what went wrong in their relationship.

Common themes reoccur throughout - sadness, loss - but I always felt I was grasping at straws when it came to what the point of it all was. A good deal of the what is happening or why is left up to the player to infer - for better or for worse. It's possible the entire thing went right over my head. I would chalk it up to such a short development time, though. Had this game been given more time in development, the portrayal of its themes could have been more refined without betraying the vagueness that the developer appears to have been going for.

I did really enjoy the game's atmosphere. I found the somber feel very appealing. The graphics were well done, but as was confirmed in another review for the game, they aren't original. That's to be expected, though, given that it was made for a contest. Regardless, I felt that the maps were very well made. There was a very good use of space. The music was also very fitting. Each piece was a nice selection.

The game's puzzles were set to the right level of difficulty. The most difficult one was at the train station. I know that clue was said to be "OCEAN", but I kept recalling the word "SEA", which was my fault. As luck would have it, I was able to improvise with that word to solve the puzzle. I also had to double-back to the classrooms to write down the answer to the final puzzle (I missed a # symbol).

Again, it was difficult to assign a proper score to the game -- the game is certainly different. While the story felt very muddled, there were some good lines of dialogue, and the puzzles were nicely done.

It will probably never be done, but I would like to see what this game could become given more time in development. With more polish, it would be very easy for me to score this game over a three.


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Nice review. Very objective description of a very subjective game!
Thanks for this review WonderPup!

A combination of bad or questionable design choices by me, short dev time, and the general ambiguity (although intentional, it wasn't helped by the previous two factors!) is probably a pretty lethal combination in terms of the likelihood that players would really get the whole deal.

I'm glad you enjoyed the atmosphere and tone though, that was something I probably gave the most consideration (for better of worse) in the whole of the dev time.

As far as I'm concerned, given the nature of the game as it currently stands, if a player can glean just a bit of the feeling I was hoping to convey then that's good enough for me, sounds like you got some of that, so I'm happy :>

Oh and :D


Thanks for taking the time to play and review anyway :D
No problem. It didn't feel like a waste of time to play or anything, so you did well.

Yeah, I read that text, but I thought I could remember the string. I was wrong!
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