An interesting game

This is a very interesting game, which utilizes a good abs system. It’s a lot like a Zelda clone, only with a different story and item ideas and the like. (Go into peoples houses and throw their pots and pick up “krests” instead of rupees.) The game starts explaining how to use the custom inventory system, although poorly. I admire the author’s intent on instructing the player on how to use his systems though. Basically the menu lets you equip items onto the Z and X keys ala Zelda style. All you can press are the arrow keys, and at the beginning, it seems confusing, but then there are items on the left that you can’t get to, your sword and shield, and the only way to re-equip them is to press the arrow key on an item that is already equipped. It took me a while to realize though, you can only equip an item onto the X key, and your Z key will always be your sword. It’s kind of confusing, so perhaps the author should have made you be able to select the actual items instead? Or at least be more specific in his tutorial.

As far as battles go, its like a typical abs, monsters run around, you have to try and get close without bumping into them to attack them. Attack range is only a single tile for your sword. It has the traditional abs flaws; the problem with being able to get close and the lack of range in the melee weapon. The melee weapon actually has two different attacks from what I noticed, which is creative. If you walk and hit attack you do a swipe, if you stand still and attack you do a stab. I don’t know if there is an actual damage difference or not since the game has not told me anything yet but I bet there will be. There is a “riding” system where you can ride a “kow” and attack while riding. The interesting idea though is that while riding the kow, the hero will automatically attack adjacent enemies, which I thought was a creative idea, it shows that riding is a powerful trait to use and can suck if you get separated from your kow. There are other weapons to use as well such as the shield and the slingshot. The shield I didn’t get to use yet, but I tried the slingshot. I don’t think it does much damage, but it stuns the enemy, which is an interesting concept. It is ranged too, so he did good work implementing that.

The other items, such as the clarity gem thing that lets you dash, are creative. Albeit buggy. Once you get the gem, you will make the habit of pressing the arrow keys one after another because of combat, and even though you didn’t press the same arrow key twice (which makes you lunge forward in that direction, because of the gem) you will end up lunging forward anyway. You could press up then right really quick without knowing it and you will end up throwing yourself far in one direction. A nice idea, but needs work.

For the story, it seems to lack a bit. At the beginning of the game you’re simply told what to do by the narrator, although it might be because the game is just a demo. So you’re forced to blindly traverse a field trying to find some town with no map and little guidance. This doesn’t go very well: games typically need to give a lot of guidance at the beginning, let them know at least a little bit of what’s going on, what has to be done or whatnot. They story seems to just tell you to go here and then there and then there with little info. Another bad idea is also that the hero doesn’t actually talk. While npcs will act like he does, you don’t actually get to read what he says. It’s like this: “So landon how are you?” There is no message for what Landon says, and then the npc says. “That’s great to hear Landon!” Thus he acts like he really does talk. This is generally a bad idea. The main character is the person who is usually affected most by the story, and if he doesn’t talk he cant very well express his views or display how he has changed. I might not know what the story has in store, and whether or not the mute hero has a purpose for being mute, but my opinion is that it really isn’t a good idea.

Continuing for the story, it doesn’t seem very well presented. Edgar, the mayor of the town you had to seek, tells you that you are “following some man”. I would like to know what the main character is doing too. Edgar also doesn’t elaborate much on the situation or what the main character is trying to do, and is very brief. Although one thing to note is that a church doesn’t “close” when it’s invaded by a giant spider. It gets well, invaded. Or destroyed. You can use much better wording. The mayor doesn’t seem to care much about the hero either. “Get out of here I will not lead you to your death.” Even after saying what has happened to the church, he honestly thinks the hero isn’t going to go there? Well, how would we know, we don’t know anything about the hero. Even so, the mayor doesn’t get more emotional or express as much power as he should.

The chipsets are very nice, very nature like and real. They seem to be custom and have a sort of gritty, realistic feel. The creator even tried to implement further aesthetics such as flies hovering around outhouses will cling to you if you get to close. The flower enemies in the ground twirl around when you swing your sword when not close; I don’t know if that’s a bug or an intended detail but it’s interesting. The charactersets have custom animation to add to the realism and make the maps more dynamic. Your kow will always face you and turn should you go round to its side. You will duck down to enter small crevices. Very nice.

The music and sound effects seem custom and very well created to me. Although the music doesn’t seem like it fits with certain areas. Such as the beginning music for the field. Maybe it’s just me. And the death scream seems a tad loud to me, maybe the author could turn down the volume of it a bit. :P

All in all I really liked this game. It has potential, and if the author continues to implement different and creative ideas I’m sure the game will attract a lot of attention. I suggest this game to anybody who needs a break from the typical dbs type of play of rpgmaker games.