Dreamfall: TLJ is a 3-d third-person point and click adventure game. The game is a sequel to a classic adventure game released in 1998 called The Longest Journey. It is not necessary to play the original TLJ to play Dreamfall, but it helps a lot, since the game universe and many characters are the same. The game is very heavy on story, dialogue, and cinematics, and light on puzzles and gameplay.
Story: the story is both the best and the worst I have ever seen in an adventure game. In the last two years I have completed 12 adventure games including old classics and modern indies. Dreamfall has a very complex and compelling story involving several interesting characters, political movements, and the complex game universe. It includes elements of comedy, drama, and tragedy. The story really gathers steam toward the end, resolving one storyline while introducing several more. Then, in the middle of the gathering drama and revelations, the game suddenly ends with no resolution to the fate of a dozen major characters and a dozen major plotlines. This is perhaps the most unsatisfying ending I have ever seen in a game, movie, book etc. Even if they did plan on a sequel, this was just plain terrible. I know a lot of people hated The Empire Strikes Back because of the unresolved plot lines. This is 100x worse.
Gameplay: there are a few puzzles that require some thought, but overall the mental challenge of this game is on the light side for an adventure game. It is a little unfair to say that this is just an interactive movie, there are some clever puzzles. Unfortunately there are many times you are just sent on a mission to fetch a particular item and bring it to a particular place. The purpose of these brainless missions is to trigger cut-scenes that move the story along. A lot of the action takes place in small rooms and tunnels. This means the camera that follows you has to zoom in and out a lot. I suppose this is a problem with any 3-d third-person game, but it can make you a bit dizzy. The interface was tweaked to be more "console friendly". This makes it a little more clunky for the PC, but not terrible.
Fighting and stealth: the developers added a few fights and a few stealth sequences in the game. The fighting is flat out a waste of time. Just stand in front of your enemy and smash the mouse button and you win. Either that, or the enemy is so tough you always lose. The stealth sequences were much better, although they did not really fit in an adventure game. I like to play adventure games leisurely, with one hand on the mouse and the other hand holding a cup of coffee. I don't want action.
Graphics: the graphics are dated by 2013 standards, but they are nice, especially the Dreamcore sequence. The close-up shots of faces look the worst. Lots of cut-scenes, some of which are pretty cool.
Sound: there seems to be a lot of interesting music and sounds, much better than the typical adventure game.
Overall, from the quality of the story, to the quality of the sound and graphics, to the overall scope of the game, this had the potential to be EASILY the best adventure game of all time. Unfortunately the game was crippled by bizarre decisions by the developers: the mega-cliffhanger ending, the introduction of bad action elements, the clunky interface, the too-easy puzzles. What were they thinking?
Geplaatst: 12 januari 2014