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    Reviews (the Good, the Bad, and the *Facepalm*), 2
    [Originally posted on 5 April 2011, when this blog was still at weblog.nl]
     

    On to The Lost Crown

    The Good

    It's a good adventure, maybe even a great one. The graphics aren't awesome, but I like them. The game is almost entirely in black and white, with occasional (and sometimes it's meaningful) use of colours. It could have just looked like a trick, but I think it adds a lot to the atmosphere in this case.
    A lot of the backgrounds seem to have been rendered from photographs / real locations. Mild spoilers: sometimes something is suddenly off: you're looking at what seems like a tear in a photograph, or a stain on the lens. Usually when there is some kind of danger, or things aren't going well.
    I love the background-sounds and music they use. Strange, mysterious, creepy or even bright and reassuring in all the right locations.

    On to the puzzles: I really like these too. They're appropriate, not overly difficult, and I can't remember any instances of too-random, so if there are any, they're few and far between. I'm a fan of the 'taking photographs of supernatural phenomena' kind of game, too. The audio recordings were very nice as well.

    I can't recall being hit over the head with disablism in this game. There was one instance where the main characters wondered if he was going crazy out loud, but it wasn't a *thing* (I hope that's understandable). It wasn't part of the plot, just a one time aside.
    The point-and-click way of operating the game was, though sometimes cluncky and tiresome, very doable and not at all stressful.

    The Bad

    The character movement was pretty stiff and strange. Turning heads or midriffs before the legs, just a body turning 90 degrees and then walking on in another direction istead of the way it usually goes, just looks weird. A lot of it looked like characters were impersonating stereotypical robot-movement.

    The game is short. Not as short as Barrow Hill, but still. These days I want more time from a game, even an adventure game that isn't big-budget. If it's not on Kongregate or similar, there are expectations.

    I didn't like the intro screen music. It was wannabe-mysterious and rather irritating. It might have been better without the singing.

    The interface is slow and unintuitive. Way too much clicking, badly done. With the number of games out there these days, they should know by now what not to do with menus and user-interface. The inventory system was also badly done: way too many objects and you need to scroll this way or that by clicking on an arrow far too much. It was something I was really dreading in any new scene by the time I was halfway through the game.

    The Facepalm

    The voice acting. I've honestly never heard anything like it. From various texts found in the game I suspect that the same person who wrote these also wrote all the voiced lines and dialogue. The punctuation is in all the wrong places and apparently the voice-actors were unable, unwilling, or not allowed to correct for this. The result is dialogue that sounds something like:
    "The Result! Is dialogue that, sounds, something...... like this?"
    It was also horribly over-acted.
    The main character is, unfortunately, the worst offender, so you're stuck listening to that constantly. It's a good thing the game was very enjoyable otherwise, because I considered quitting and never looking back, it was that aggravating.
    Other characters also speak like this, though less infuriating than the main character. There were a few half-decent sounding characters, but that was as good as it got.

     

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