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Casual Games

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As an add on ... I can see how this game, providing there is a Part Three, and, providing some of the game is re-worked, could become a legit adventure game.

There is one scene that requires finding eight keys. It’s an HO scene, but I can live with it. But then you are confronted with the door with eight locks. Place the key ring on the door and the puzzle is solved. We didn’t even need to work for the solution. It’s a “casual” way of solving the puzzle.

Brings up the question as to whether this is a casual game or adventure lite. I’ve not reached Part Two yet. But, so far, this is casual with adventure lite potential.

     

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Another add on: I’ve started Part Two. Haven’t gone very far, but it does seem a bit creepier than Part One. A few more jump scares at the beginning. I thought the ending of Part One was REALLY good. The omission of the word never from the tape our protagonist heard set the scene for the start of Part Two.

Even though I’ve just started, I’m already upset that Part Three is up in the air. I would certainly back a Kickstarter if that would do the trick.

     

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rtrooney - 27 September 2019 08:28 PM

Another add on: I’ve started Part Two. Haven’t gone very far, but it does seem a bit creepier than Part One. A few more jump scares at the beginning. I thought the ending of Part One was REALLY good. The omission of the word never from the tape our protagonist heard set the scene for the start of Part Two.

Even though I’ve just started, I’m already upset that Part Three is up in the air. I would certainly back a Kickstarter if that would do the trick.

I think you’ll find the game gets even better as you go along Tim. There are a couple of weak points, notably a puzzle device fairly late in the game that, unless I missed something (perfectly possible), isn’t explained and comes somewhat out of left field. But it could be explained, and even used more, in Part 3, if that ever materializes.

I agree with you about the Kickstarter; I’d definitely back it.

What is also apparent in Part 2 is how much Goblinz grew in their game design and implementation after Part 1. Part 1 is very good but does sit more in the Casual definition, but could also be deemed Adventure Light. Part 2 is much harder to define but I stick by my full Adventure with Casual overtones definition. If Goblinz do manage to finance and release Part 3, and have grown in experience exponentially, then it should be an absolutely superb game and al;so fit in the full Adventure category. Amalgamate all 3 parts into a full adventure (completely dropping the Casual bits) then I can see it getting a 4 Star rating here.

I’ll certainly be interested to see what Furgotten makes of the game(s) once he’s had a chance to play.

     

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I’m not sure how I feel about Part Two. What is the difference between scary and terror?

We’ve all been to a scary movie where we’ve collectively, as an audience, literally screamed “Don’t open the door to the basement!” With this game, you click on Hint, and it tells you to open the door to the basement. So you know in advance that something not good is going to happen. But you have no choice.

     

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rtrooney - 29 September 2019 09:01 PM

I’m not sure how I feel about Part Two. What is the difference between scary and terror?

We’ve all been to a scary movie where we’ve collectively, as an audience, literally screamed “Don’t open the door to the basement!” With this game, you click on Hint, and it tells you to open the door to the basement. So you know in advance that something not good is going to happen. But you have no choice.

Personally I see it as a scary thriller. As I never used the hint system I can’t pass comment. I definitely used the map as the game was so large so that I always knew that there was something to be done wherever I was. Not that I could necessarily work out what I had to do of course but, under those circumstances, went elsewhere. Eventually it all got worked out and completed.

     

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I just finished the first True Fear game. I agree with what Tim said about the classification as tending toward adventure lite; it is a lengthy and fairly meaty game. It doesn’t really have much in the way of puzzles though as long as you search everything.

Unfortunately True Fear did not really immerse me in the story and I did not really care for the gothic atmosphere that much either. I did enjoy the game and intend to start on Part 2 shortly but just did not care for it as much as it seems the rest of you did.

     
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Jabod - 30 September 2019 07:04 AM

As I never used the hint system I can’t pass comment. I definitely used the map as the game was so large so that I always knew that there was something to be done wherever I was.

I use the hint system as a pseudo map. While I like the interactive map, it will occasionally tell you there’s an objective at a location ... even if you don’t have the item needed to complete the objective. (At least that’s how it seemed in Part One.) Using the hint button, with a fair amount of walking, will take you to a location where there is actually something to be done. I did not use the hint button for help in solving puzzles.

Correction. I did use the hint button to solve the maze puzzle. The puzzle solution was something like L, L, R, R, L, L, R, L. Well, to go left you have to hit the counter-clockwise button. The solution was to actually hit the clockwise button which would cause you to turn right. Once I figured out that they screwed up the puzzle design by using the hint button, the solution was a piece of cake.

     

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I just started Act Two of Game Two. This is a long game. Regardless of whether it’s casual or adventure-lite, it’s a difficult game. I think I’m close to ten hours of gameplay, and I have no idea how much is left. Assuming there will be eventually a Part Three, and there will be another six or so hours of play, this would be a twenty-hour game. Easily would rank time-wise with any recent adventure.

     

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Don’t know where you are in Part 2 Tim but it is much longer than Part 1 and will be longer still if you refuse to use the map. There is a lot of toing and froing in this part and, although it is coherent, trying to remember where everything is without copious notes would be rather difficult. Although you said that you’d thought that the map marked places with something to do but you couldn’t find anything that never happened to me. There were times when I certainly couldn’t work out what to do, occasionally going “doh!” a while later, but when I had eventually twigged upon returning, it was just an oversight on my part originally.
What pleased me with the game was that the story-line held up throughout. In some of the longer games I’ve played the story has become somewhat forced to ensure the greater length - not so here.

     

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furgotten - 30 September 2019 11:27 AM

Unfortunately True Fear did not really immerse me in the story and I did not really care for the gothic atmosphere that much either. I did enjoy the game and intend to start on Part 2 shortly but just did not care for it as much as it seems the rest of you did.

Interesting view Furgotten and I can see where you’re coming from but, for me (having played both parts), it’s much more of an SF Thriller; less Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde or pretty much anything by M R James and more like David Cronenberg in films The Fly or Dead Ringers - style that is not content.

     

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Just entered Act 3.

I agree that the map was invaluable in Act 2. I did not like a few of the puzzles. There were a few that in my casual game reviews I would call tedious. That is, you know how to solve them, but they take so long to solve that you skip them. Then there are a few, such as the stargate puzzle that just seem impossible to solve even if you know what the solution is supposed to look like.

And then there a puzzles such as the doll puzzle. Where you are supposed to find the differences. Only, unlike in other “differences” puzzles, there is no counter to tell you how many differences you have found.

All in all I didn’t enjoy Act Two.

Edit: Actually, I did enjoy Act Two. There were just some things about it, such as the above mentioned puzzles, that left me feeling that the designers didn’t give this as much thought as they did in Part One. I think they gave too much thought to the puzzle, itself, rather than to the joy/reward of solving it. Perhaps this is what makes it feel more Casual than Adventure. Example: You find the examining room. And, even though there is no reason to do so, you put the skeleton on the table. And it works! Then you look at the controls and they tell you certain things. One is that you have to bring up the body temp, so you put the heating pad under the skeleton’s head, and it works! Then you find out that the skeleton is underweight. so you are off in search of a bag, with which you can collect some sand that you saw previously. You collect the sand in the bag, place the bag on the skeleton, and are rewarded with ... almost nothing. A lot of work for minimal reward.

Like you say, there was some real advancement by Goblinz between Parts One and Two. But to turn this into a cohesive Adventure rather than a really good Casual is going to take a lot more work than I’ve seen so far. And there is the current absence of a Part Three plan.

     

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Casual Game Developer List
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Finished Part Two. Obviously the cliffhanger you referred to. Reminds me of the ending to A Vampyre Story. Both games ended in a WTF moment. Financing for the sequel to both games dried up.

Don’t know what more there is to say. Enjoyed it. Despite the shortcomings I mentioned in earlier posts. The map problems I mentioned seemed to be more pronounced in Act Three. The map frequently took me to a location between the two busts. The I would hit the Hint button and the hints took me to another location entirely. It’s definitely a game feature that will need some work if the series ever gets patched together into a complete game. Also, I don’t remember there being any “exploration” puzzles in Act Three. Which is a good thing. However, the puzzles seemed to be more “casual in nature” than they were earlier in the game. Or, maybe I just got more used to the way the designers thought about puzzles. Don’t know.

     

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Casual Game Developer List
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rtrooney - 09 October 2019 03:14 PM

Finished Part Two. Obviously the cliffhanger you referred to. Reminds me of the ending to A Vampyre Story. Both games ended in a WTF moment. Financing for the sequel to both games dried up.

Don’t know what more there is to say. Enjoyed it. Despite the shortcomings I mentioned in earlier posts. The map problems I mentioned seemed to be more pronounced in Act Three. The map frequently took me to a location between the two busts. The I would hit the Hint button and the hints took me to another location entirely.

Actually Tim, there was something you could do there but just didn’t realise. I got caught out in exactly the same way. You’re sent there by the map because you can do a time switch and you need to change the discs in the busts to do so. The hint system will take you elsewhere because there is something to do that is needed to be completed for progression to progress properly i.e. the puzzle(s) at the two busts don’t need to be completed at that time to progress the game.
As to being misdirected at other times you missed/forgot about the info I supplied earlier in the thread:

Jabod - 23 September 2019 04:54 AM

I will pass on a general warning though. Given the scale of the game I’d be surprised if anyone didn’t use the map feature which not only tells you where actions exist but, unlike Enigmatis, you fast jump between locations so no unnecessary and time consuming navigating between locations. However, some locations have small side locations which don’t feature separately so if you forget that you may be spending some considerable time in the wrong place trying to work out what the hell you can be doing there. Me? Do that? What ever gives you that idea!  Smile

rtrooney - 09 October 2019 03:14 PM

However, the puzzles seemed to be more “casual in nature” than they were earlier in the game. Or, maybe I just got more used to the way the designers thought about puzzles. Don’t know.

Probably a bit of both I suspect Smile Goblinz were getting a bit of stick because of how long it was taking Part 2 to be released so I’m guessing that they took a faster route whereby the puzzles were concerned. Getting the funnel at the very end was certainly straight out of Casual Games 101 Laughing

     

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Jabod - 11 October 2019 09:46 AM

[
I will pass on a general warning though. Given the scale of the game I’d be surprised if anyone didn’t use the map feature which not only tells you where actions exist but, unlike Enigmatis, you fast jump between locations so no unnecessary and time consuming navigating between locations. However, some locations have small side locations which don’t feature separately so if you forget that you may be spending some considerable time in the wrong place trying to work out what the hell you can be doing there. Me? Do that? What ever gives you that idea!  Smile

Maybe it was just the map mechanics that were the problem. There are other games, e.g. Lost Lands: Four Horsemen, that have “drill down” maps. They take some getting used to. But once you know how to navigate with them, getting around is easy. With this game, not so much. It probably only means that I was not able to understand the mechanics. Or maybe when I arrived at the main locus, e.g. the greenhouse, and found nothing to do, I failed to re-click on the map. Instead, I just clicked on the Hint button out of habit, And it told me which of the five available sub-locations I needed to visit.

It’s a great pair of games. Thanks for bringing them to my attention. I would certainly recommend them to anyone who regularly reads this thread. (Despite the fact that we don’t know when, or IF, Part Three will ever be produced. As I said before, I would back a Kickstarter campaign.

If, on the other hand, Goblinz decides Part Three is never going to get developed, I think they owe it to purchasers of these two games to provide a synopsis of what they planned to develop. It would not surprise me if that synopsis already exists, since they already knew it would be a three-part game.

     

For whom the games toll,
they toll for thee.

Casual Game Developer List
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