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Educational RPG?

  • Lebeau4
  • 07/09/2012 10:27 PM
Lost Identity
By QilleRz
Review by Lebeau4
Time of completion: 2 hours (+/-)

Usually, when someone picks up an RPG, it's to immerse oneself in a whole new world; one of adventure, of magic, of intrigue, etc. Games are meant to be enjoyable; you play them to be entertained, not to be frustrated and this is where Lost Identity simply does not delivers. While I know the game is suppose to be educational, it's execution is sluggish, lacking and most of all, frustrating. I'm not entirely sure, but from what I've seen, this must be the developer's first RPG Maker project. While I should be more indulgent toward QilleRz knowing this, I won't. Even for a first project, there's just too much flaws in it for me to ignore. Without wasting any more time, let's start this review.

Characters & Story:
Two of the game's worst points. You need a good cast to make a decent RPG. You might have the best battle system ever; if you don't have interesting characters, it's not going to work out. While I wasn't expecting too much depth in the cast, I was expecting a bare minimum, which sadly, wasn't there. In Lost Identity, You play as Cleve, a young lad whose nameless father hates him terribly. Why does he hate him? I don't know, he just doesn't like him, just like that. This is taken directly from the game: “His father does not like him by no reason”. Haters gonna hate.

Cleve also has a nameless caring mother who is the exact opposite of his father. After 5 minutes in the game, they're never mentioned again. Why were they introduced then? What's their purpose? Anyway, a couple minutes later, Cleve meets another nameless women after falling in a hole and arriving in a nameless mysterious world. What's her name you ask? Well she never says it. She just assumes you know it already I guess. Open the game menus if you wanna know (That's what I did). Finally, there's the “Guardian of Time”,which is the game's main and only antagonist. What's his ultimate goal you may ask? Mmm .. To make Cleve go through a series of complicated scientific studies about physics and thermodynamics with a little mixture of “general truths of the operation of general laws also known as knowledge of science”. Yeah, simple as that. Why would he want Cleve to go through this? Because it's science! Science is fun!

After all the exams, you finally meet the mysterious “Guardian of Time”, where he wants you to beat the **** out of a Lamia. You know, in order to fight a monster, you absolutely need to know quantum theories and all it's mechanics. Afterward, the guardian gives you an incredible, unique, mind-blowing speech and you win. The end. So why did I needed to know all this science stuff? Because.

"Lord of all speeches!"

Now, that's just horrible. Have you ever had a teacher in school who wasn't an english-speaking person (french-speaking in my case)? Now tell me, it was pretty damn hard to understand what you were suppose to learn wasn't it? Well this game took it to another level. Learning the “study of thermodynamical systems” is pretty much impossible in it's current state. During my playthrough, even if I cheated for the correct answers, I still failed twice because of how poor the writing was. Not trying to be mean or anything, but I gotta say, some of the game's cut-scenes made me laugh quite a bit. This game is badly written. That sums it up pretty much. I could drag this on forever, it's abysmal. End of story.

"Wait .. who sucks what here?"

"Could you repeat that sir?"

Not much to say here actually. While not the game's strongest point, it's not too shabby. The use of the RTP graphics could have been better, but for a first game, it's not the worst out there. Rooms too big, passability problems (not being able to move in a room because of an npc in the way), strange layouts, etc. On a side note, the windowskin looks all washed-up; not pretty at all.

It's perfectly alright. The music suits pretty much all the scenes, the RTP music is chosen correctly and you don't feel sick just listening to it. The title's screen music was pretty good though. Good job here.

Okay, now we're talking. I have a lot to say about this. Firstly, what's the point of having fights in a game where you're trying to study sciences? Seriously, it's so frustrating to get from point A to B with battles every 20 steps. Speaking of which, the game needs serious balancing. When you have your first encounters, they're really easy. You would use “Attack” two times and that's it. Done. But then comes the final encounter with the Lamia. Good thing there's the “Training Land” (a place you go to if you ever lose to the Lamia) because that damn monster is pretty badass, in the wrong way. If you ever have the chance to set foot in the wonderful world of non-stop encounters, chances are you'll be in there for atleast 1 hour. 1 hour of just you and that chick grinding up on lame encounters that can be summarised by this: Attack + Fire. Rinse and repeat. By the way, the game lasts for about 2 hours. Now you know how half of my playthrough looked like.

Furthermore, there's no inn. Nope. I thought there was one, only to find out it did absolutely nothing. The only way to recover is to buy health potions and magic potions. So practical it's scary. Another thing, you're never really told what to do or where to go. The game is really, really confusing. For instance, at the beginning, in order to get out of Cleve's house, you need to speak with the father, then the mother and once again to the father, in order. What they say isn't even relevant! It's the kind of dialogue npc's would have and we all know how important their topics are. Another example of confusion is when the instructors give their tests to Cleve. They just keep on telling you stuff you'll probably forget in under 2 minutes, and then it's 10 questions straight where you must have a score of at least 7/10. Doesn't look so bad right? Well it looks awful, let me tell you that. While answering the questions, you don't see the questions anymore, only the possible answers. What am I suppose to do if I forget the question? Nothing. I could go on and on but you get the idea, the gameplay was not enjoyable to say the least.

"Hey, you're suppose to give me a choice! Hey!?"

Educational or not, this game wasn't fun to me. I mean, even if Mario's Time Machine wasn't a great educational game, it did a fairly good job at being what it was. This isn't the case for Lost Identity. If there's no fun factor, there's no reason to play the game.

Note to developer(s):
I don't know if this game can be fix. Honestly, you should move on to something else. If you ever feel like working on a new project, use what didn't work here and improve on it. Get better at writing, even if it's not your mother tongue. I'm in the same boat by the way man, I know it's hard but one way or another you gotta do it. Practice your mapping, look for tutorials or take a look at some of the other developers work. You've earned experience from this project and it's up to you to improve your skills. You know, like Thomas used to say: “And why do we fall, Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”

Final Verdict:

Characters: 1 /5
Story: 1 /5
Writing: 1 /5
Visuals: 2.5 /5
Audio: 3 /5
Gameplay: 1 /5

► Overall: 1.5 /5


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The 524 is for 524 Stone Crabs
I like how the audio category got a 3 while the majority of every category got a 1.
Well, it's pretty much the only thing that's not anonying haha
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