Heavy Rain

 Adventure Games, Short Take  Comments Off on Heavy Rain
Jul 022012

Status: Complete to “Four Heroes” ending. Most Intriguing Idea: Making a playable thriller. Best Design Decision: Using QTEs to make almost every action of a mystery playable. Worst Design Decision: Too many main characters. Summary: Where most games trying to be films have trended towards pure action or criminal drama, Heavy Rain aims to be a playable thriller, with mixed success.  A significant part of the problem is that this is not a very good thriller. Serious plot holes appear, which is hardly a surprise, and many supporting characters are simply broad caricatures, but the real problem is that the [Read more…]


 Adventure Games, Short Take  Comments Off on TRAUMA
Aug 182011

Status:Complete, all endings and pictures obtained. Most intriguing idea:Using hidden-object gameplay as an analogy for self-examination. Best design decision: The “ghost photo” navigation system. Worst design decision: Describing the possible endings under the “Discoveries” tab. These are telegraphed enough as is. Summary: TRAUMA sets a difficult task for itself and doesn’t completely succeed. The idea of the game is that a young woman has been in an accident and the player is engaged in her mental healing process, as instanced through a quartet of dreams. By moving through the dream worlds and finding fragments of her memory (in the form [Read more…]

The Text Blues: But I Digress…

 Adventure Games, Critique  Comments Off on The Text Blues: But I Digress…
Feb 032011

It seems like most of the people who wrote reviews of 999 thought very highly of it. I’m not sure why that was; I found the game to be a fairly tedious exercise in the repetition of insufficiently interesting puzzles. 999 creates this problem for itself because of its structure. The enforced replays that are central to 999‘s design and fiction ask for more from the puzzles and dialogue than they are able to contribute as art or entertainment. In addition to that, I felt that 999 had a tendency to undermine its plot and atmosphere during its moments of [Read more…]

 Posted by at 00:41  Tagged with:
Jul 282009

I finish, or get finished with, more games than I write long essays about here or elsewhere. Sometimes I’m just not inspired to write a detailed critique, other times I’m just not inspired at all. This being the internet, and me being a blogger, however, I thought I would try to put together a short, snappy format for conveying my thoughts on the games I’m done with. Title: Flower, Sun and Rain Final Status: Finished Put this on your box: This game is some tedious, boring bullshit. Most Intriguing Idea: By using the guidebook as the key to almost every [Read more…]