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Default Penny Arcade (rain slick precipice of darkness) Anyone tried it yet?

May 22nd, 2008, 03:43
I know there's been one or two post on this before that I recall reading on the forum here.. Im not Penny Arcade's biggest fan out there, but I like the art and they can be funny at times I guess…So it seems like their RPG/Adventure game thing finally came out..and based on the youtube preview even though it shows combat that seems a bit like jRPGs and such..the game itself also reminded me of some of my old favorites adventure games like Day of the Tentacle or Monkey Island games for some reasons. Here's the link to the preview for those who havent seen it.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_fk4…THG-000001-01/

Ah, and there's a demo (which im downloaded as Im writing this)..There's a version for Windows, Mac and Linux…and I believe it also is or will be on Xbox live arcade.

Demo:

http://www.playgreenhouse.com/game/HOTHG-000001-01/

Anyone tried it yet? Whats your thoughts? I guess I'll give a bit more feedback here once I get around trying out the demo myself.
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May 22nd, 2008, 04:04
in the middle of finals, so I dont have the time this week, but I too have given it a not-too-serious look and thought - "that sounded pretty stupid at first… but it might just be pretty cool"

I'm anxious to hear what you think of it ='.'=
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May 22nd, 2008, 04:28
Well here's a first impression…

I didnt play all the way through the demo yet, but I played until my character met up with Gabe and Tycho and fought a battle or two along with them (so maybe 15-20 mins of gameplay)…and just like with the strips the art seems great, the character creation was nice looking although you dont chose anything in term of stats there, just your character's sex and body and clothes…but I liked how it was done and the short intro as well.

They quickly introduce you to combat (obviously this being a demo/tutorial, the first few fights seem extremly simplistic). The combat it seems isnt completly turn based nor completly live. You have timers on attacks, special moves and item uses so even if the enemies already have attacked, you may not get to use your special attacks again just yet… Although I should have paid more attention, I didnt take time to notice wether the enemies kept attacking if I didnt do anything (I suppose after their own timer comes back up) but it seemed as if they did just that….so if that was really the case that would be more like action, but then again you also have timers on everything, so you cant just click click click and attack 20 times…so it create some sort of 'turns' I guess.

The combat seemed to open up when I joined gabe and tycho.. For example my character had his special attack ready and so did gabe, so when I clicked on gabe's special attack I was offered to combo it with my character and they did some special attack together while at the same time I could send Tycho to attack another evil robot. You collect items here and there and can smash box, garbage cans and such. Although the items you collect seem to mostly be usable for special actions (like in aventure game) or for combat… I havent seen loot that you can sell or real equipment… but then again all this is based on about 15 mins of gameplay … I wasnt even fully out of the tutorial phase, so Im sure there's yet a lot to see.

Anyway, the controls seem simple enough, and it seems as if you were moving through a comic strip… which looks cool but also mean that you dont get to roam across the world like say Gothic or whatever..but I doubt anyone was expecting that out of this game …Also it could possibly open up a bit more once I get further, I wouldnt know just yet seeing how far I got. The few jokes I've seen so far were hit and misses, but like their comic strips it doesnt seem like the humor is very mature . But I think I can live with it, i'll give more time to the demo as soon as I get a chance.
Last edited by Galaad; May 22nd, 2008 at 17:53.
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Default mini review

May 27th, 2008, 15:06
I played through the game and I think the demo gives you a good idea of what to expect. It's a mixture of adventure and JRPGish elements. Here are my impressions.

As far as being a RPG there is no "role" and very little if no "roll". The beginning where you choose you character's appearance is the extent of customization and choices to be made concerning your character. When you level up some stats change, but I never paid attention since there wasn't anything I could do about it. Also every couple of levels you get a new attack skill - no skill tree or other choices here either. In fact the game very linear in all aspects. For instance, all the enemy's locations and numbers are predetermined. Randomness occurs in only three places in the game: the "initiative" roll at the beginning of combat, the mini games in combat, and items found or dropped at the end of combat. It seemed to me success in combat relied heavily on you ability to block attacks. Which required you monitor the attackers health bar and press "space" when it flashes.

As far as being an adventure game there are no puzzles to solve. It's really just get rid of x or collect/find y. But you do spend a lot of time clicking things. This is because there is a lot of detail to the world and it is quite humorous.

While the enemies never respawn, items found in containers do. There is no store or money in the game. So to "stock up" you need to smash crates and accept random items. I think I only felt the need to stock up once during the game.

I didn't think combat ever opened up very much or got very complicated. Except for 3 battles you pretty much line up and go. It really feels more like a casual flash action game than part of a RPG. At times I found this frustrating and other times I found it fun in a casual game way. I never felt like I was grinding through monsters. Partly because combat could be fun and because the areas didn't seem too overloaded.

The game is quality over quantity and short (about 10 hours). There are only two areas after the demo and each is only a bit bigger than the demo area. There is also one other area, but it is just a single room. Like I mentioned before many items can be clicked, so the areas feel rather detailed. Most of the people you talk to are well written and entertaining.

The big miss in the game I found were the 3 mini games outside of combat. They were very tedious. Unlike in combat where the games would add a bit of tension, these games were just an annoyance.

More of a disappointment than a miss is the voice over. After the demo he has only three more lines. I thought his voice over was awesome and wished it continued through out the game.

What the game really excels at is being an interactive Penny Arcade comic. It's a humorous romp through an absurd Penny Arcade world. The game elements are light and casual.
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May 29th, 2008, 14:02
I started playing this last night and have thoroughly enjoyed it so far, I wouldn't have particularly expected to given the lack of more solid role playing elements but it's so well detailed and well written that none of that matters. I actually laughed out loud a couple of times, the humour is well done and never takes itself seriously and does a great job of mocking cliches.

Keeping me well amused while waiting for mass effect and mysteries of westgate anyway
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