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Who are some of your favorite adventure game villains? + More Villain Talk!

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Baron_Blubba - 16 April 2021 12:12 PM

I’m going to go back and read your thoughts in the CPT thread again. Meantime, I’ve written a lot of what I liked/didn’t like in my last several posts in the What Game Have You Just Finished thread. I reckon we are probably simpatico on much of it.

Just like you, I still gave the game a positive review. I think it’s one of the better modern adventure games I’ve played; I might even replay it some time in the future to see if I missed out on some magic the first time around. But I didn’t enjoy it nearly as much as some other forum members.

Totally didn’t mean to sound like you need to re-read my thoughts, and I’m just too lazy to sum them up again. You just mentioned reading through CPT, so I referred to what (I thought) you probably already read. I have read your review and just decided to post here, since the talk I initiated was about villain in this game, and I didn’t want to spam that thread.

I think we most likely think along the same lines, absolutely, but I wouldn’t rate game as highly
I’m a very character-driven person when it comes to all mediums - games, literature, films, so when I have a dislike for a character I’m suppose to relate to - that brings it down to me significantly. I’d also say that I thought the ending (especially after chapter 6 which showed “the beginnings”) will give some redemption to Winfriende seeing how she was singled out by her entire family as a “rotten apple” from the very young age - truly, the mother is the real villain of this story, but - nope, no such thing. So, it plunged the game for me even deeper. I don’t even think I posted a very last opinion of the game because of my disappointment.

I’d say I left it as:
“Listen, I really don’t like the characters here, but I understand that it might be not my kind of story. On top of that, I realize that the art, the music, the decent puzzle element is objectively solid (and some of it is pretty awesome), so I say it’s a worthy game that ended up not being a game for me. Majority of people seem to like it much more than I do, anyway.”
- kinda review.

Personally, I’d rate it below 5, but, again - very subjective here, I didn’t like two major things - main character and the turn of the events in the end, so under 5 it goes.
I will not be replaying Anna’s Quest, but developer’s new game “The Big Hollow” certainly looks interesting to me!

     
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Looking back at other games I rated ‘7’, my rating is probably a bit high, since I usually use the full scale: If I give a game a ‘5’, I think it is truly average—not great, not terrible, and worth playing if you’re into the theme or something else about the game. So yeah, I would probably re-rerate it as a 6.

Okay, I’ve been thinking about this game a bit more. Here’s the thing: I don’t feel like any of the characters, even Winfride, are so fleshed out or deep as to warrant extensive reflection. The game seems to *want* to go deeper, but somehow ends up just glossing over most of its more crucial themes. As a player, it leaves me with the impression of smelling steak while eating candy: You get a whiff of something more satisfying, but are left chewing on empty calories.

Also, the fact that the great reveal takes place in the last chapter, and then *after* all the gameplay has been resolved, is cheap. It doesn’t take much courage to twist your plot drastically when you don’t have to deal with the consequences of the plot twist afterwards. Authors do this often and it really upsets me—killing off a character or pulling the rug out from underneath the reader or making a grand revelation in the last chapter or two. Big freaking deal—it’s just a cheap way to make people ‘feel’ or get upset/glad about your story.
This is one reason why I feel the ending was much too abrupt. Knowing what we know after the last chapter, we should have been left to deal with the change of circumstances and at least attempt to reconcile a couple of things; not just watch a two minute cutscene and then have the credits roll.

One more thing occurred to me as to why Anna’s Quest did not click with me as much as perhaps it should have, being a very competent (if sometimes narratively frustrating) adventure game: I never really felt like I was the locomotor of the story. It was always Anna’s story, and I was an outsider, clicking on things so that the story would progress—there was no role playing element in it for me whatsoever. I was never Anna; I was always the player outside the fourth wall. Even in Monkey Island and games where the main character frequently breaks the fourth wall, I still, to some degree, feel like *I am Guybrush*. When I play a King’s Quest game, as absurd as the logic is, I still feel like I am the character, this is not just his journey (or quest, as it were) but mine as well. And I think *this* is a very key reason why so many recent adventure games, even the ones that have arguably superior game mechanics to the classic games, don’t click with me. 80’s-90’s adventure game gameplay may be archaic by modern standards, but even the ‘just good’ ones have a way of pulling me in, of balancing role-play and outside observation, that very few games made from 2010 onward have done. At least, not ones that I have played.

 

     

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With all the serious and tragic villains, I’d like to take a moment to honour the Mysterioso Pizzicato type. A bit more taunting and theatrical, taking delight in making the hero’s life just a bit more complicated. The heel to the face, the mischief-maker.

I think Jenny La Rouge from “Agent A” fits the description, but I find it hard to think of another villain in this category. Any suggestions?

     
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Baron_Blubba - 17 April 2021 11:34 AM

Okay, I’ve been thinking about this game a bit more. Here’s the thing: I don’t feel like any of the characters, even Winfride, are so fleshed out or deep as to warrant extensive reflection. The game seems to *want* to go deeper, but somehow ends up just glossing over most of its more crucial themes. As a player, it leaves me with the impression of smelling steak while eating candy: You get a whiff of something more satisfying, but are left chewing on empty calories.

Also, the fact that the great reveal takes place in the last chapter, and then *after* all the gameplay has been resolved, is cheap. It doesn’t take much courage to twist your plot drastically when you don’t have to deal with the consequences of the plot twist afterwards.

Yes, I agree with that. So it’s not so much of an extensive reflection, but rather the feeling of being robbed, in a way. Last chapter kinda came out of nowhere, and I felt like it was showing us backgrounds and upbringing of the characters to finally show… something... But then the game promptly got back to its original “skimming the surface” storytelling, so I ended up having more thoughts then if the game wouldn’t go there to begin with. It’s like - I see the potential there, but it’s never being fully explored. (Or maybe never meant to be explored, really)

With that being said, game is overwhelmingly liked by a majority, so it also makes me feel like the whole fairy-tale theme where things tend to be intense but one-dimensional (good is GOOD, and bad is BAD) just isn’t for me.

I will put official vote for mother of the girls as the worst villain in the story, and, I suppose, go take a look at KQ, since it’s one of those classics I haven’t played : )

     
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Also, in Nelly Cootalot we have the villainous Baron Widebeard. He’s a fun and interesting villain.

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I enjoy playing adventure games on handheld systems- PS VITA, Nintendo DS and ipad mini.

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