Latest User Reviews

Review of Gray Matter

Rating by charmer posted on Dec 14, 2014

Mixed bag of awesome

Let's just run down the good and the bad; the writing is excellent and the plot is intriguing and very well put. You can't easily guess what will happen next. The soundtrack sets the atmosphere very well, voice acting is of high quality for most characters, rendered backgrounds and ambient animation are very well executed. That seems to cover almost everything... But there's bad too: some strict plot dependencies might get you stuck at the end of some chapters. Character and facial animations are stiff and unrealistic, and harm the overall feel of the game dialogues and other portrayed situations. This was probably the reason the developers opted for animated comics for cutscenes. I also experienced some technical issues with frame rate, dithered cursors and overlayed music tracks. Finally, voice acting for some NPCs is below average and some lines in dialogues are just plain awkward. All in all, I recommend Gray Matter to anyone who can appreciate substance over style.
Time Played: 10-20 hours

Review of Randal's Monday

Rating by Subway posted on Nov 25, 2014

Great fun from start to end

This game is a masterpiece in my view, the graphics are good, the story is great, the puzzles are hard enough and the dialog's are funny on a monkey island level... all and all a game that took me back to the good old Sierra and Lucas days.
Time Played: 10-20 hours

Review of Ether One

Rating by thorn969 posted on Nov 19, 2014

Sometimes tough, interesting story, still felt a bit short

Objectively, this game wasn't short and had some very tough, non-intuitive puzzles. But they fit with the environment and it was beautiful and worked as a story. Sometimes the commentary got a bit repetitive, especially when you were moving back and forth looking for missing bits to solve puzzles. Every puzzle can be solved, although sometimes they are very tricky. But at the end I was left wanting... more meat. Definitely worth playing, but it lacked a bit of... cohesion that would make it feel like a complete game, I guess. Much better, in my opinion, than similar exploration games like Dear Esther and Gone Home, but I think it could still have used additional scripting.
Time Played: 10-20 hours

Review of Papers, Please

Rating by thorn969 posted on Nov 18, 2014

Not for me.

It's an interesting idea, but annoyingly timed for the whole game - you have until the clock strikes 6 each day to process as many people as you can and really feels like a chore to play, because you have to find and identify flaws on papers, quickly. And the storyline... I'm not sure how rewarding it is. It would take days of playing to get all 20 endings and seems like it would be really a lot of miserable work.
Time Played: 1-2 hours

Review of Sinking Island

Rating by thorn969 posted on Nov 18, 2014

Deeply flawed but clever, beautiful game

This game was beautiful, as all of Benoit Sokal's games have been. The scenery was lovely everywhere, as was the tower. I thought the story was reasonably clever with plenty of red herrings. I didn't think the evidence was particularly strong, but that is not totally relevant. The engine, the PPA with clue management rather than inventory puzzles was clever and well done, for the most part. Occasionally, it seemed a bit arbitrary choosing between multiple, more or less equivalent pieces of evidence. I got stuck a few times before realizing I had to go talk to another person about a conversation and then use that person's statement on the first person. It seemed, frequently, like statements should get more reaction from all characters involved and that characters should remember and react to what they had been told. The detective was very free in sharing the information he gathered, but suspects would act and talk like they didn't have information he had given to them, if it was given in the wrong order. I also had a bug, of sorts, with the Island starting to sink before I was told that the Island was starting to sink, and then several hours later, I encountered someone who gave me the news that was already obvious. But really... the story was good, the scenery beautiful... it was a great concept of an adventure game and I think it was essentially a proof of concept and the engine felt a bit lacking in development and some of the characters flat and... maybe a bit of a beta version... lacking polish. Still a solid game and worth paying for.
Time Played: 10-20 hours
Difficulty: Hard

Review of The Whispered World

Rating by thorn969 posted on Nov 18, 2014

Not a bad little adventure

I, as others, occasionally found the puzzles a bit too obtuse and item combinations occasionally random, but I think my biggest objections to the game were... well... I think it was rather short and I felt the ending was cheap. An overused twist ending that doesn't really resolve anything. But the graphics were cute, the interactive sidekick was a cool concept and most of the puzzles were good, classic puzzles. A lot of people seem to really like the ending and the story, but I thought that was the weakest part. I was not at all bothered by the peculiar voice acting. I thought it fit the character. I just wanted another hour or two of gameplay with a different ending.
Time Played: 5-10 hours

Review of Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure

Rating by Cross_ posted on Nov 16, 2014

Fun movie sequences, low quality game

If this game had been released 15 years ago it would have been great. But times have changed and it is reasonable to expect more from games nowadays. More puzzles that do not involve exhausting every line of dialog for example. The worst part however is the 3D graphics which look like something out of the N64 era. This is particularly disappointing since there are 3D cutscenes which have high production values only to then be dropped into the real-time world and suffer through the poor quality there.
Time Played: 2-5 hours

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