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Thread: Pumpkin's Top Adventure Games!

  1. #31
    Pinkasaurus Rex Cid's Knight Pumpkin's Avatar
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    #4 - To The Moon


    Platform I played on: Steam
    Available platforms: Steam, gog, Humble Store
    Developer/Publisher: Freebird Games
    Length: 5 hours

    Story:
    In this game you play as Dr. Eva Rosalene and Dr. Neil Watts who work for a company that is in the business of artificial memory creation. You are assigned a dying patient named Johnny who had a dream to go to the moon. It's up to your characters to go back through his memories before he passes away and alter them so that his wish can be fulfilled. However, when going back through his past, they learn a lot more about him that complicates their job.

    Gameplay:
    This game is mostly about interaction. As you go back through memories, you'll need to collect key items to progress and solve small puzzles. This will allow you to dive further and further back in to Johnny's past. There are a few gameplay elements to shake things up, such as a small RPG battle section and a part where you throw plants at zombies. Mostly though, you'll be going through memories and watching key scenes.



    Environment:
    In To The Moon, you will explore a few different locations, mostly through Johnny's memories. You'll also be able to explore his house. Most areas are pretty small and limited, but there is a good variety of different places and story to uncover in each new area you visit. It isn't really a game that focuses on exploration, it more just uses the environment to hold more of the story.

    Ambiance:
    Fantastic. In case you couldn't tell yet, To The Moon is very narrative driven. Everything in the game exists for the purpose of telling a story. If that's something you enjoy, this is certainly a story worth experiencing. The pacing is excellent and the environments and gameplay help to express the feelings To The Moon wants to convey. It's really easy to get attached to these people as you learn about them and their lives and because of that, the emotional moments hit hard and leave an impact.



    Choices:
    The game isn't very choice heavy. The choices come more in the form of watching the characters make impactful decisions in their lives and seeing how that plays out and, in some cases, what could change if they made different ones.

    Puzzles:
    A few here and there. Basically you will be looking to retrieve specific items and memories in order to progress. When you find the necessary things in a level, you'll have a small picture uncovering puzzle game, which aren't super challenging.



    Cons:
    -Everything in the game is there to serve the narrative so if you don't like the narrative, there's nothing here for you. If you do like the narrative though (as I did) then this isn't a bad thing
    -Small, limited environments
    -Doesn't have a proper sequel yet

    Pros:
    -Wonderful story
    -Much feels
    -Good sense of humour
    -Little ways of changing things up with the gameplay here and there

    Overall:
    If you're in the mood for a wonderfully touching and engaging story in the form of a short, cute little game, then look no further. It doesn't have the best graphics, the best gameplay, the best environments, and there's not a ton to do differently on subsequent playthroughs. But that isn't what the game is about. It's about experiencing the story of a dying man named Johnny and learning about the life that made him who he is. And in that regard, the game accomplishes exactly what it sets out to do. Just be ready for the feels.

    Verdict:
    Several hundred origami rabbits



  2. #32
    Pinkasaurus Rex Cid's Knight Pumpkin's Avatar
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    Only 3 left!
    #3 - Her Story


    Platform I played on: Steam
    Available platforms: Steam, Google Play, App Store
    Developer/Publisher: Sam Barlow
    Length: 3 hours

    Story:
    Her Story is a story... about HER! Seriously though, it's a bit of a unique game in that you play someone, although you don't know who for a little while, watching old police tapes. These police tapes are about a woman named Hannah and the disappearance of her husband, Simon. It's up to you to figure out exactly what's going on.

    Gameplay:

    Again, Her Story is a rather unique game. The gameplay consists of... watching video clips. And then you type in a search word in to the search bar and... watch more video clips. Until you "finish" the game, a search term will limit to the first 5 results, but after finding the twist and finishing, you can expand the amount of results shown so that you can more easily find and watch any of the clips you missed. There are 271 total clips to find, but not all are needed to complete the game.



    Environment:
    Literally you sitting in front of a computer screen searching for videos which take place in interrogation rooms.

    Ambiance:
    Really good. The use of a real actress and having you kind of... sitting in front of a computer screen while your character is unseen but also sitting in front of a computer screen does wonders for immersion. This really is an "interactive movie" like none I've ever seen. The ambiance, aside from what I mentioned and a few sounds and visuals here and there, is very bare bones. But not in a bad way. It's been stripped down to its basics because that actually helps the immersion and the feel of what the game is going for.



    Choices:

    The only choices are what you choose to type in the search bar. Which is both a very limiting amount of choice and a surprising amount of freedom. Especially since some surprising searches will actually turn up results sometimes.

    Puzzles:
    Basically the whole game is one giant puzzle. You watch a video and write down or keep in mind anything you think might be important. Then you enter that in the search bar and watch more clips. Then you try and find important terms or themes or observations from those videos and search more things. And so on and so forth. Her Story rewards you for taking educated guesses and making observations even when a key word or name isn't explicitly stated. Especially when your search results are limited to five in the beginning, you'll need to get creative sometimes to get more clips.



    Cons:
    -It's literally just typing search terms and watching movies. If you want something more gameplay heavy... well, look elsewhere. It's really BARELY a game
    -Also doesn't have a sequel

    Pros:
    -Very interesting story
    -Bare bones in a way that works amazingly well
    -Strangely addictive
    -Unique, which is a good thing if you like it as I do. It's different from any other gaming experience I've ever had
    -A surprising amount of freedom

    Overall:
    I was pretty skeptical about Her Story at first. I mean, you watch clips and it's real people, not even video game characters, making it even more like a movie and less like a game. I decided to give it a try when I saw a glowing review for it and I am very glad I did. As I said, it's different from any gaming experience I've had before and in a good way. It made me want to keep playing, keep watching, try and figure out what happened. It's also got a weird contrast between being very limited and very free. The order in which you watch the clips, discover the story, and find key terms is entirely left in your hands. And yet, that's all you can do. But really if it sounds at all interesting and you want to try something new, it's like $6. Definitely worth the price in my opinion.

    Verdict:
    Perfect for someone who doesn't like to look at their own reflection



  3. #33
    Witch of Theatergoing Karifean's Avatar
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    I've heard a few good things about Her Story, though to me, the short length and style of interaction is a little off-putting. Though I'd still probably play through it in one session if I got to my PC with three hours to spare and for some reason decided to try it.

  4. #34
    Pinkasaurus Rex Cid's Knight Pumpkin's Avatar
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    #2 - Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons


    Platform I played on: PlayStation 4
    Available platforms: PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Steam, iOS
    Developer: Starbreeze Studios
    Publisher: 505 Games
    Length: 4 hours

    Story:
    The game follows two brothers (go figure) as they journey to the Tree of Life in order to collect the waters that will save their fathers life. They must work together to overcome obstacles with each bringing their own skill. The brother can fit in to smaller spaces, for example, but is afraid of the water after their mother's passing. Will they make it to the Tree of Life in time to save their father?

    Gameplay:
    Brothers is an overall simple game, although it can feel awkward at first. Each brother is controlled by one of the thumb sticks. You'll need to move them simultaneously in some cases in order to solve simple puzzles or get through platforming sections. You'll also need to be aware of each character's positioning and make sure they aren't getting themselves in danger while you focus on one of them. Basically, a lot of coordination.



    Environment:
    There's a lot of variety in the environments you'll explore, from farmland to a former battleground, to snowy scenery. While you won't be able to do massive amounts of exploring in each area, you'll get enough time with them to take an interest and get the feel for them. It also does a great job of making each area feel distinct and add to the ambiance it is trying to set up.

    Ambiance:
    Speaking of ambiance, this game is the best example I can think of when it comes to telling a story through gameplay. I don't want to spoil anything, but the mechanics play a crucial role in the emotional impact of later story elements. By controlling both characters at once and coordinating everything, controls that feel weird and awkward grow to feel much more natural and expected. While Brothers does have some voices, it is in a fictional language, so instead of telling the story through words, the game uses environment, gameplay, and tone of voice.



    Choices:

    Not really any to speak of. I guess you can choose to play the game or not!

    Puzzles:
    An important element to the game. As I mentioned, you'll basically need to learn to coordinate your characters to work in sync in a lot of cases. In some other cases, you'll need to reason out how to progress and unlock some gates or sections in order to continue. Not the hardest puzzles but a few good thinkers. The puzzles also involve some motor skills, which is a nice change of pace from the usual pure logic puzzles.



    Cons:
    -Too short!
    -I would have loved more info and backstory on some of these locations and just this world in general

    Pros:
    -Dem feels ;__;
    -Interesting mixture of motor skill and logic puzzles
    -Great bond between the siblings
    -Excellent example of storytelling through gameplay
    -Interesting areas

    Overall:
    I really loved Brothers. Even though it's been a while since I played it, the emotions I felt while playing have stuck with me and just thinking back to it reminds me of all of the touching, sad, and happy moments the game had to offer. While it is short, it still feels rather large in scale and as I mentioned a few times, I have never been as impressed with how a game incorporates gameplay in to its story, especially towards the end. It's emotional ride about the bond two brothers share while going on a quest to rescue their father and it was worth every penny.

    Verdict:
    2/2 brothers


    Last edited by Pumpkin; 02-21-2017 at 08:08 PM.

  5. #35
    Slothstronaut Slothy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shauna View Post
    I thought Gone Home was gonna be spooktastic, but then it was sad instead.
    Yeah that caught me quite by surprise as I went along. Spent the first 15-20 minutes carefully sneaking around waiting for anything and everything to jump out at me until it was obvious it wasn't that kind of game.

    And I've yet to finish it and I'm not sure if you've played it already and it will show up later, but if you haven't played it then check out Oxenfree Pumpkin. It's ridiculously good so far.

  6. #36
    Pinkasaurus Rex Cid's Knight Pumpkin's Avatar
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    I did actually play Oxenfree, but it will be making an appearance on my horror list!

  7. #37
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    Oooooo. Exciting!

  8. #38
    Crazy Scot. Cid's Knight Shauna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vivi22 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Shauna View Post
    I thought Gone Home was gonna be spooktastic, but then it was sad instead.
    Yeah that caught me quite by surprise as I went along. Spent the first 15-20 minutes carefully sneaking around waiting for anything and everything to jump out at me until it was obvious it wasn't that kind of game.
    Right? (SPOILER)Although, I was still mildly paranoid that I was gonna find a dead body in the attic. xD

  9. #39
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    #1 - The Walking Dead: Seasons 1 & 2


    Platform I played on: PlayStation 4
    Available platforms: PlsyStation3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, Xbox One, iOS, Google Play, telltale.com, Steam, gog
    Developer/Publisher: Telltale Games
    Length: 22 hours (Season 1 ~13, Season 2 ~9)

    Story:
    In season 1, you play as a character named Lee, a black man in Georgia who is under arrest. Before we get to learn too much about what exactly is going on however, things decide to go to crap and suddenly there's a zombie apocalypse. Shortly in to the game, Lee finds a young girl named Clementine whose parents were away when everything happened. He brings her with him as they search for other survivors, look for somewhere safe, and just focus on surviving. I won't say much about season 2 to avoid season 1 spoilers, but it continues the story of survival in a zombie apocalypse.

    Gameplay:
    This is one of those "Your choices totally super matter" style of games that focuses on slightly branching paths depending on choices you make in game. Because of that, selecting dialogue options is a huge part of the game as it will cause slight variations in the story and bigger variations in character interactions and relationships. You'll also be able to search areas for items and examine things. There are also quick time events that involve aiming, as well as pressing and mashing buttons.



    Environment:
    Bleak. Seriously though, prepare for a lot of zombies, dead bodies, garbage, the colour brown, and disorganized messes. Despite the common elements to each environment, there's a good variety of location changes and new things to see and explore. The amount you can explore is usually limited, but it doesn't feel too often like a bad thing and there's usually a good amount of intractable in each area. Also brown.

    Ambiance:
    The game's ambiance is excellent. You always feel that sense of hopeless dread, like there's always a huge weight on your shoulders. There are some lighthearted moments thrown in to prevent you from burning out on misery and not caring anymore, but it's always very easy to feel the weight of the situation. Since it is based on a comic book, I also really enjoy the artistic style which feels very comic book in its shading and presentation.



    Choices:
    This is where the game really excels. You'll be faced with a lot of choices, both big and small, throughout the course of both seasons. To be clear, it isn't a situation where your choices change the game completely and you'll get an entirely different game each time. There are branching scenarios but they always snap back to a single point where the story will always go through the same major events. However, your choices do impact certain things like for how long some people survive, different conversations, different relationships with other characters, and just general stuff like that. The game is good about remembering your choices and having it be referenced in the future (even in to the next season in some cases). Really though, the big thing about choices is that they're meant to reflect who you are and what you value and prioritize. That's where the main appeal is when it comes to these decisions, even if they sometimes end up the same way.

    Puzzles:
    Not really much in the way of puzzles. A bit of investigating here and there, finding the right stuff, and maybe some logic involved in the best courses of action to take. Otherwise, not much here.



    Cons:
    -It sucks when you like a character and then they die
    -It sucks when people are supposed to be on lookout but then have sex instead
    -A character came back that really shouldn't have come back and it was weird and they barely explained it

    Pros:

    -THEM FEELS
    -THEM SELF-REFLECTIONS
    -Actual, tough moral choices
    -Excellent characters and character developmet
    -Great story
    -Good aesthetic

    Overall:
    I was worried about playing this game because I'm not a zombie fan and I don't like the TV show. But not only is it my top adventure game, it is one of my favourite games, period. The characters are excellent and even the ones I wanted to punch managed to be believably written which allowed them to illicit an emotional response from me (anger, in case that wasn't clear). The story was bleak, but it was still touching and charming and it had me invested in everything going on. My favourite part though was the moral dilemmas because, even if they had little impact on the actual story, they allowed me to learn more about myself and learn to view situations in different ways. This game was amazing, emotional, and insightful and I eagerly await the release of the full season 3 so that I can delve back in to this wonderful work.

    Verdict:

    Of course Kenny would be from Florida.



    So that is my list everyone and I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed making it! As for what's next, it'll probably end up being fighting games, or maybe visual novels.

    Also, if you aren't sure which of the awesomely awesome games on my list to check out, I made a (probably not so) handy dandy flow chart for you!




    Thanks for reading!

  10. #40
    disc jockey to your heart krissy's Avatar
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    cool thread

    i love the look of oxenfree as well

    telltale usually does amazing work

  11. #41
    Taking care of business Cid's Knight Bubba's Avatar
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    I really enjoyed this

    I haven't played the majority of them but it was interesting reading about them. I adored The Walking Dead games!

  12. #42
    Pinkasaurus Rex Cid's Knight Pumpkin's Avatar
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    Thank you, I am glad you enjoyed it

  13. #43
    Witch of Theatergoing Karifean's Avatar
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    Not exactly the most unexpected of #1 picks =P Never played it myself, but everything I've heard about it has been great. I should probably pick it up sometime...

    Was pretty fun to follow along. I knew more of them than I expected to, though I still haven't played a single one of them

    According to your flowchart, the games I should play are Life is Strange and To The Moon. Hmmm~

  14. #44

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    Just started Read Only Memories yesterday, been waiting a long time to get my hands on it, but sadly I totally forgot about it and then last month realized it was on console, and then it just went on sale, so I nabbed it

    I remember their trailers capitalized a lot on people's love and fondness of Snatcher, and that they were trying to recapture that look and feel. And for the most part I think they nailed it. Though it kind of over-shot the look. It looks great, but it also looks a bit older than Snatcher. But I think the two games would be in good company. Makes me want to replay Snatcher and Policenauts. Two games you may want to investigate someday if you haven't already

    I've had To The Moon and most of the Telltale games in my libraries for a long time and never touched them. Actually I think I have Life is Strange on PS4 digitally as well... And Oxenfree, since people are talking about it. I've just had this pill in my head the last few months where I don't play games much, and when I do, I want to ... do stuff. Walk around, explore a world. And fight things. And adventure games are very passive experiences. I don't watch a lot of TV or movies, and adventure games kind of blur the line between watching and playing and I typically feel more compelled to play more than watch. Which isn't a good feeling when I know I'm missing out on fantastic stories like these

    Thanks for shining a light on them



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