Copyright Adam Schlosser
Contact:
aschloss@gmail.com


Copyright 2005 Adam Schlosser


Posted by Pip

BR21- BrecKaa

Maybe Breck does have super powers! She has to have some kind of radiation-enhanced super convincing powers. No way would Lust harm herself against any normal mind. Super powered children, they're out there. At least Anger is understanding and chill. Or its biding its time to eat Lust later.

As always, there's a new voting incentive, so click that TWC link. You can even vote daily! That's only legal in comic voting and mob run elections! This week finishes off the Lantern “What Could Have Been” theme. The Pink Lanterns got the short end of the stick there.

There's even some new art in forum just for the fun of it. For those that voted and the lazy uncaring bums that want to see us dry up and whither without even a thought for our feelings or all the people that will miss out on the comic because it was too low in the rankings and... where was I? Art. In the forums.

Happy Lupercalia, Slapeggs!


Long, WAKE UP! Review: Fragile Dreams- FD would have made for an interesting book, but it really has no business being a video game. Just from the very beginning, you're faced with some terrible design. There's a cutscene or some reason for the game to take control away from you every ten seconds and you just want to give up and let the game play itself if it's not going to give you a chance. Then, I got stuck for a while on the second objective you have because of poor level design. You have to get over to a platform but instead of climbing the one foot tall step to get on to it, you have to walk across a tiny platform and then walk across a telescope. Seriously, taking one step up on solid ground or a needless balancing act one story above the ground, which would you think is the logical route? The bad ideas run rampant through the whole game. At one point, you have to play hide and seek with another character and it's quite possibly the dumbest thing I've ever had to do in a video game. You have to play hide and seek with an invisible ghost. You find it by listen to through the tinny, crappy Wii remote speaker straining to hear imperceptible differences in volume. After you find her, you have to do it again. After you find her again, you have it another time only now you're forced to crawl along because if she hears you, she'll run away. And every time you guess wrong in the extremely small search area you're given, she runs to a new spot. I only cleared this area by constantly going to one spot I had seen her at before over and over and over until the game stuck her there again. Combat isn't fun but it's extremely prevalent. They're incredibly strong offensively and defensively, they reappear when you change screens, and invisible enemies can spawn behind you. Thanks to the crappy Wii controls, trying to get your moron to turn around isn't a quick task. Combat isn't a focus of the game and the system is very bare bones so that makes it surprising just how much of it there is. At about the halfway point, I just started running from every nonessential fight. You have a separate inventory menu for arranging your items and for using items and you can't access one from the other. The tutorials and instruction booklet basically just tell you to open your inventory and select an item to use it so I was getting really pissed off trying to heal with the game asking me where I wanted to move the food. Into his mouth! Where the hell else would it go!? When you buy an item, it doesn't go into your inventory. It goes into your backup inventory that you can only access at save points adding one more slow, unnecessary step to the process. Your items break leaving you weaker and unable to do more than one swing, meaning that enemies can spawn other enemies or heal themselves at the same speed you can hurt them. You have to carry around a back-up weapon at all times so your already very tiny inventory just got even more minute. And the frequency at which your weapons break is just awe inspiring. I went into an area with three weapons. I killed five enemies and my first weapon broke, then I killed two enemies and my second weapon which was supposed to be stronger than the first one broke, and finally I fired three shots from my crossbow that did 0 damage to an enemy so I had to run away because I was out of weapons and then the crossbow broke. Do companies even play their own games anymore? How many people did this go through and yet at no point did somebody step in and say this was unacceptable. Trying to heal, save, or identify unknown items are other slow, tedious processes that you can only do at bonfires (because the amount of light that a tiny bonfire gives off is quite clearly more intense than a huge flashlight or, oh say, the sun). You have to light the bonfire, go into an unskippable scene where the character repeats one of a very limited number of lines, go into an unskippable scene where the shopkeeper greats you with one of a very limited number of lines, back out of the shop, and then you can move items around or save and then quit back to the game. The game is roughly ten hours long but if you were to cut out these pointlessly drawn out moments, you'd probably be able to blast through in two or three hours. There's so little content padded out by tedium, extraneous menus or actions, and backtracking or long hallways. Backtracking with running from one end of an area and then back again AND backtracking from one end of the game all the way back to the start to find some random item. Video game fans will remember "The Ladder" from Metal Gear Solid 3, well, Fragile Dreams has that beat for the all time biggest wastes of time in a game. You spend five minutes running down a straight hallway and then you spend another five minutes climbing down a ladder at the end of the hallway. There's absolutely no story or practical reason for either of these segments to take anywhere near as long as they did and not only do you not get the bonus of getting to listen to "Snake Eater" but there's no music in this area so it's ten minutes of footsteps and ladder climbing. The last third of the game is almost entirely made up on you walking down long hallways or climbing ladders. It's an extremely tedious way to end an already terrible game. At one point in the game, you find a special item that lets you read ghostly messages written on the wall. And they aren't translated. Any of them. Including the super important one that's supposed to be giving you directions on where to go next. The game is also just too damn dark. Yes there are story reasons for it, but it affects gameplay. It's all too easy to walk passed doors or miss items simply because they were at the edge of the screen and shrouded in darkness. If it's not right in front of you, it's too hard to see. There's only one tiny section of the game that actually takes place outside in the sun and then it's right back to dark hallways. Hoorah. The story has an interesting background and the world itself is far more intriguing than any of the characters you encounter. The most likable character in the game is an AI backpack, so that's probably saying a lot. Despite the people, you'll want to find all the items in the game to unravel the backstory of what's going on with the world and what happened to all the people. Unfortunately, once you find out what most of the story is, it's... Let's say that it won't be half as interesting as what you probably thought up in your head on the way to the ending. Without spoiling anything, the end of the game is all about random things being robots and a guy with a serious beef with “words”. The concept of words is the motivating factor for a major character. All the interesting stuff just never gets explained. You'll end the game with a handful of items that never get explained, characters who are never explained, enemies, objects, story, and frigging cats that never get explained. The story would have been much better as a comic or a movie. It's far more interesting to think about and watch than it is to actually play, but maybe it would have been a good game in the hands of a better developer. It's not that the game had good mechanics that just weren't programmed properly or were farther reaching that what the system is capable of, they're just lousy mechanics from the start of the design phase. There's nothing really outstanding or unique about the game that you can forgive them for doing poorly, they just started with bad ideas and then screwed up established mechanics that dozens of other games do just fine.
Sins Committed: Everything that makes it a game
Virtues Acted: The story starts off interesting, Grrr, blast you, you evil words.