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Encodya

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Agreed. And sometimes they don’t even have the fundamentals down. The early puzzle where you have to steal the electrician’s keys requires you to create a long stick by putting two short ones together. But we aren’t even told the short stick isn’t long enough - when we try to use it there’s the generic “that doesn’t work” response.

Dropping the player in a world with minimal story background and giving us a “task checklist” requiring a lot of tedious trial-and-error work is something that should have died a cruel death 20 years ago.

     
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Luhr28 - 14 February 2021 05:27 PM

Agreed. And sometimes they don’t even have the fundamentals down. The early puzzle where you have to steal the electrician’s keys requires you to create a long stick by putting two short ones together. But we aren’t even told the short stick isn’t long enough - when we try to use it there’s the generic “that doesn’t work” response.

Dropping the player in a world with minimal story background and giving us a “task checklist” requiring a lot of tedious trial-and-error work is something that should have died a cruel death 20 years ago.

That sounds awful. Puzzles can be tricky to nail we all know that, but than there needs to be a story hook. This game just looks hollow. Take for example another new game, the hand of glory it has numerous problems, but the game had some logic and you can see talent there from the devs for future games. I feel a lot of members on here are either scared to tell the truth or grade on a massive curve.

Like i said i love whispers of a machine, but i was honest with the devs so far on the directors cut of kathy rain and how they are dropping the ball badly.

     
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I can also verify the pixel hunting complaint, in my own experience. I visited the abandoned store 3 or 4 times when stuck on the wire + puddle puzzle and totally missed the item I needed, even after using the hotspot highlighter multiple times. It just looked like a tiny shadow to me (one of many other shadows) and I only discovered it was an item i could pick up after waving my cursor over it. And this was after someone on the Steam forum hinted that location as the one I needed to search.

I think this is the final straw for me. What is the use of a hotspot highlighter if all it does is dimly flash the item? Clearly the developers intended that visually hunting for items all over the locations is a big part of the gameplay, and don’t wish to lessen the “challenge” of spotting hard to see items (a challenge which involves waving my mouse over every inch of the screen in case it has something I need to interact with). No thanks. If I wanted a hidden object game I would have bought one.

Not to lessen the value of anyone else’s experience, of course. I’m just presenting my own.

     
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Luhr28 - 14 February 2021 05:27 PM

Agreed. And sometimes they don’t even have the fundamentals down. The early puzzle where you have to steal the electrician’s keys requires you to create a long stick by putting two short ones together. But we aren’t even told the short stick isn’t long enough - when we try to use it there’s the generic “that doesn’t work” response.

Like I said before in a post you probably didn’t read: I didn’t get a “that doesn’t work” response. For every object I tried the game told me “you give X to the electrician”, so I got the totally wrong message that I should give the electrician something and stop trying to steal his keys.

Dropping the player in a world with minimal story background and giving us a “task checklist” requiring a lot of tedious trial-and-error work is something that should have died a cruel death 20 years ago.

Hm, don’t know about that. I always enjoy being dropped in a world where I have to figure out the story. But I agree that running errands has become more than a little tedious. Time to move on, devs.

Regarding the Trump/politics references: I made some progress in the game and in the defense of the Spanish dev(s?): they did use other German words in Neo Berlin anno 2062, like Zeit Square (Times Square, haha). But unfortunately the name Rumpf does sound like Trump without the T, not at all like the German pronunciation. 

Jdawg445 - 14 February 2021 07:10 PM

That sounds awful. Puzzles can be tricky to nail we all know that, but than there needs to be a story hook. This game just looks hollow.

There is a story. Come on, you haven’t played the game.

     

Crime is a form of art - Unmemory

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Karlok - 15 February 2021 12:26 AM
Luhr28 - 14 February 2021 05:27 PM

Agreed. And sometimes they don’t even have the fundamentals down. The early puzzle where you have to steal the electrician’s keys requires you to create a long stick by putting two short ones together. But we aren’t even told the short stick isn’t long enough - when we try to use it there’s the generic “that doesn’t work” response.

Like I said before in a post you probably didn’t read: I didn’t get a “that doesn’t work” response. For every object I tried the game told me “you give X to the electrician”, so I got the totally wrong message that I should give the electrician something and stop trying to steal his keys.

I did read that. I just saw it as a separate problem - and I do agree it is a problem. But I thought you were referring to the highlight when you hover an item on the electrician - “Give X to electrician”. Did you actually get “you give X to the electrician” when you clicked? Because that’s bizarre, and sounds like a bug.

 

     
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Luhr28 - 15 February 2021 04:16 AM

I did read that. I just saw it as a separate problem - and I do agree it is a problem. But I thought you were referring to the highlight when you hover an item on the electrician - “Give X to electrician”. Did you actually get “you give X to the electrician” when you clicked? Because that’s bizarre, and sounds like a bug.

You’re right, I checked just now. My bad. I’m having more senior moments these days. Frown

PS: It annoyed me that the keys had no hotspot. That plus the weird “give X to electrician” makes me think the devs felt this puzzle should be made harder but didn’t really know how to go about it.

     

Crime is a form of art - Unmemory

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Jdawg445 - 14 February 2021 11:03 AM
Luhr28 - 13 February 2021 10:30 PM

Just started playing and it’s not off to a good start. It reminds me of the time after the “golden age” of Sierra and Lucasarts where devs thought they could make a ton of money making lazy copycat 3rd person adventures without putting in the effort or understanding that Sierra and Lucasarts made which elevated their games to classics. Well, at least it looks lovely. I’ll play another half hour before I consider a refund.

I think so many modern devs have no idea what made adventure games great, they got the basic fundamentals down but not the creative part to elevate the material. Or sometimes they get lucky in one aspect or another.

I finished Encodya last night and I think you both nailed it: the game shows a lack of creativity. I would not go so far as to call the devs lazy, they clearly put a lot of effort into the beautiful worlds and paid attention to nice details. I bought the game because of the great art style, the atmosphere in the trailer, and the fact that you can switch between two protagonists which sounded great. The voice acting of Tina and robot Sam is excellent. And I liked the ten “red herrings” in the inventory which turned out to be a kind of easter eggs.

And now for the negatives. Fetch quests. Pixelhunting. Backtracking. A very simple story that takes a long time to get going, with a weird ending I don’t quite understand. Boring cookie-cutter puzzles.

Three annoyances of mine:
1) Example: You want to scoop up some gooey stuff in a place filled with cups, saucers, and bowls. But of course you can’t use any of those, you have to search high and low for a container. I know, lots of mediocre adventures with inventory-based puzzles think nothing of such inconsistencies. But it’s stupid and unimmersive.
2) There’s an echo in the forest. Clearly intentional, not a bug. Why? I have no idea. Got on my nerves after a while.
3) And the worst one: Running. Lots of big overview screens that take a tiny Tina 15-25 seconds to cross, so of course you want to run. But doubleclicking to go to the next screen didn’t go smoothly. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t. Worse, Tina stops near the edge of the many side-scrolling screens, so you have to double-click again. Even worse, if you want to examine an object you can’t doubleclick on it. Either you walk there very slowly or you double-click on a spot near the object and then click on the examine icon. For instance, Tina has to visit 4 floors in an apartment building with 5 doors on each floor. But you can’t run past the doors in the corridors, she stops at every door. Infuriating!

I’m surprised the AG reviewer gave it 4 stars. My own score is 2.5 stars. Of course other people may enjoy the game more than I did.

     

Crime is a form of art - Unmemory

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I played through the first chapter and I agree that some pixel hunting is annoying. I got stuck on every “quest” from the list, and each time it was some small item I missed, from a random stick on the ground to socks to elevator controls near the door which is NOT a hot spot. At least a couple of characters hinted at the capacitator that could be found lying on the ground. On the other hand, this gives the game a very old school feel, like it was made between 1990s and 2000s. The only things that give its age are the graphics (very nice) and “Trump”)) I’m not into modern politics, but the parody easily reads, I don’t know why the devs chose to deny it (probably scared of angry fans giving them a low rating at Steam). Personally I don’t mind it at all, Trump was funny.

What I do mind though is the “bum” gameplay. Basically all you do during the first chapter is digging through litter, stealing and trying to get everything for free. Yeah, I know, this is how 90% of adventure games are designed to a greater or lesser extent, but here we are practically playing a homeless girl who gets her food, clothes and everything else from dumps and littered streets - despite she has a high-tech robot looking after her! Why can’t he apply for a job, gain money and buy everything instead of following her day and night? I should say this made the intro chapter pretty unexciting and a bit smelly. The story gets more interesting though, I wonder where it leads.

     

PC means personal computer

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Ok, had to abandon Encodya after playing chapter 3, will save it for better times. The game certainly has a lot of potential, but I agree that the story is too simple and unexciting, especially for cyberpunk settings, and it doesn’t know where to turn - it’s neither a serious dystopian thriller nor a comedy. At least I don’t find jokes and parodies all that funny. Non-playable characters are annoyingly one-dimensional, dialogues often result in some completely unrelated quest or a random inventory item (for some reason you get a lot of stuff for free). Also the future in this game is rather bleak, not much to discover apart from flying cars and robot-related stuff. And virtual reality, but it leads to even less interesting settings so I had to stop there. Secrets were fun to discover though, the protagonists are likable and the game looks and sounds great, hopefully I’ll return to Encodya some day. But this year another girl and her robot won my heart.

     

PC means personal computer

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