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Every little thing she does is magic...

  • pianotm
  • 02/16/2015 09:06 AM
Name: Disparity

Developers: Yellow Magic, suzy-cheesedreams, TungerManU, and NeverSilent

Oh, good lord and lady, this game is gorgeous.

Story: This is a very short demo so there isn't a lot of story being told yet. Your main character is Ciss and I gather she's a student from the city learning magic and that she's basically giving up school because her teachers are trying to manipulate her. Instead, she finds a new manipulator-erm-teacher, Zilla, who's going to teach her to unlock her powers. Unfortunately, numerous magic artifacts have been stolen from Zilla, and she wants them back.

Gameplay: Encounters are touch. The combat system is a little unwieldy and takes a bit getting use to. The battlers attack automatically and move up and down the screen on either side. As Zilla, you place reflectors on the battle field to direct the fired magic at the enemy. Of course, you could accidentally reflect it to Ciss. It's an interesting concept but I found it unwieldy an time-consuming. You could just let the battlers go but then they hit each other on random chance and it takes forever. The way the battle engine is, you literally put reflectors in place (repeatedly; they don't last long) and hope the enemy runs into the fire. Unfortunately, you can't really prevent the fire from hitting Ciss. I don't recommend scrapping it though. It's an interesting concept and I did start to get into finding ways of cornering the enemy. A bit of adjustment is definitely in order, though.

Graphics: Absolutely fantastic. The character portraits, tilesets, and sprites are simply gorgeous and so are the colors. I absolutely love this artwork. Okay, I need stop here or else the whole paragraph is going to become a sonnet to Suzy_cheesedreams' artwork.

Writing: The dialogue is developed to the point of banter so you get a real feel for the characters early on. This demo is too short to really say anything about plot and development, but what's there is excellent.

Music: Written by TungerManU. The music in this game is actually unique (not in style, but in content). Professional and well organized, the music really helps to set the atmosphere and to tell the story. His uses of rubato in Flashback are subtle and expressive and while beautiful, suggest a skewing of reality. In the notes, there's an indication that not all is as it appears and as you listen while watching the cutscene, you get the distinct notion that Ciss isn't remembering things exactly as they were, and though the flashback is so short, we learn almost nothing except that life used to be what one might call normal, the music suggests it was anything but. This isn't a use of creepy tones. This piece is beautiful and calming, but there is the sense of a missing step; it's not the truth that comforts us but what we want to be the truth.

Conclusion: I'm keeping an eye on this game, and you should too. This game looks as good as any of the other games that have won Misaos in the past.


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Got any Dexreth amulets?
Thanks a lot, pianotm! That's much more praise than I would have expected, and I'm not sure if all of it is truly deserved. Of course, I can't speak for my teammates.

I'm aware that in its current form, the battle system has numerous flaws, and I am going to work on ironing them out hopefully soon. It's true that every encounter takes very long, and I even noticed that myself while testplaying - but for some inexplicable reason, it never crossed my mind to try and fix that. A case of developer's blindness, I guess.

Either way, I agree that my teammates have all done great work in their respective departments. We'll try to make the full version much more enjoyable and get rid of the wobbly bits. Thanks a ton again for your review, and I hope you'll enjoy the complete game once it's ready.
To be honest, I didn't know what rubato was up til now, lol. Should probably learn music for real. Thank you for the review though! Really delightful to hear kind words for what was my first experience in this particular role, and I'm sure Suzy will share my joy (as a fellow newbie, that is).
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