Shadows

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If only life had HDR lighting... (sigh)
Monkofevil
Review of: http://rmrk.net/index.php/topic,28598.0.html Shadows
By: Zylos

Brief overview of review system.
I divide the game into several parts, as listed (And Described) below.

-Story
The story's score is solely based on my opinion of the story, use of cliche, and overall player grippy-ness. Negative score is obtained by poor grammar, or spelling arrors. (Or if the story simply sucks, which happens.)

-Graphics
Rtp is evil, and this is pretty well known. There are some games, (Like this one) that manage to use RTP because you have a very small universe. The larger the universe, the more likely people are going to want to kill you for using Arshes as you main character.

-Use of Third-Party Scripts
This can easily make or break a game. If you use scripts that lend themselves to your particular game, and the style you're trying to get across, then these scripts can be amazing. If you sue scripts that don't however, then your game fails miserably, and won't live up to yours, or others, expectations.

-Use of Events
Events are the main point of an RPG. Do "A" to unlock "B" to uncover "C" so you can defeat "D." This can be done well, or poorly, and a score here reflects that.

-Incorporation of Side-Quests
Side quests are a staple of professional RPG's. A linear story is interesting, but people want to explore, and learn about the canon of the story, the background, some history. Sidequests enable you to give this to the player, and are important, especially for large games.

-Replayability
Do you want to play this game again? If you do, how well does it hold up?

Once these scores are tallied, they are averaged for the final score, out of ten.

Moving on, to the Actual Review! [Fanfare]


Story:
The story of Shadows is neither complex nor deep. It is however, suspenseful, interesting and gripping.
The story, from the readme.

Quote
You wake up in a dark room with a throbbing pain in your head and no memory of your past. You have no idea who you are, where you are, how you got there, or even what year it is. The only clue in your possession is an ornate matchbox with the initials “A.C.” written on it. You strike a match and the room becomes bright, with the shadows and dim light gleefully dancing together on the walls.

You have but one objective on your mind now: to find an escape from this place.

I won't go any further than this, as this is a spoiler free review. And in all honesty, telling you anymore about the story would totally kill the ending. (Besides, I'm tired of these mother-huggin spoilers in these mother-huggin reviews!)
It is a simple, fun, sometimes really suspenseful game, with TWO ENDINGS!!!! It pays homage to the old style of RPG, like Myst, or Legend of Zelda.
Either way, the story had me sitting in my seat, until the very end, which I could see coming like a bright light in a tunnel. The ending was cliche, but not terribly so. The Second ending, the good one, was very good, and was totally worth going off the beaten path for... *hint*
The grammar and spelling had a few errors, but it was not a huge detractor to the overall feel of the game. More importantly, Zylos? Your grasp of the language is noted, you know how to write, what you need is to take it to a new level of figurative language, and more interesting words. Get out the thesaurus, and allow you language to become a force to be reckoned with.

Story: 8/10

Graphics:
Use of RTP was noted, but this is a small project that didn't take too much time, and was not hurt by the use of RTP. Mapping was good, and kept the game interesting, there we're several instances where the map kind felt Cut and Paste-y, but it wasn't often.

Graphics: 8/10

Scripts:

Since no combat was involved, the only script was the AMS.
It definitely helped the story along, and was pleasing to the eye!

Scripts: 10/10

Events:
This was the core of the game. Shadows was a "go get a thing, so you can do another thing" kind of RPG. Much Like Zelda, or the more interesting: Legend of Zelda and the lampshade of no real Significance." The author used exceptional eventing to keep you guessing, and the items you pick up are used in very unexpected ways. Zylos gave hints as to the items you need, without giving them away, and some of the puzzles were extremely difficult, but not so much that you wanted to stop playing. (Statues. All I got to say.) That said, they weren't anything spectacular, so they get an average score.

Events: 7/10

Side Quests:
There weren't any, unless you count the completion of the second ending, so I won't tally this into the final score. But that said, Sidequests are important, players enjoy them, and it might be necessary to put a few in on your next game.

Score? Null

Replayability:
I enjoyed the game, and upon discovery of a second ending, enjoyed it again.
Sure the puzzles were easy to solve, (Photographic memory would have helped, but I'm good with association puzzles.) But the suspense was all there again.

If there hadn't been a second ending though, I sure as heck wouldn't have started it again. There would have been no reason to, the story is the only thing to accomplish in this game, and it's a simple, short game. So the score reflects that.

Score: 7/10 (Thanks to two endings!)

So now it's time for an overall score.
 I give this game a 8/10
Not an "A"rating, but a solid "B+" It kept my interest, and it was definitely enjoyable.
I would recommend this game to anyone who likes suspense.

Keep up the good work Zylos!
« Last Edit: August 23, 2008, 12:15:36 AM by monkofevil »