Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
|a game by||Aspyr Media|
|Editor Rating:||7/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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It can fairly be said that the adventure genre is dead. Adventure died a long time ago, after languishing around for a while and kicking off after a particularly harsh and long term of suffering. We mourned, pulled out our copies of Full Throttle and Grim Fandango, and all but gave it a wake when out of nowhere we got Indigo Prophecy. Fahrenheit in its original release, re-titled Indigo Prophecy in the US, rocked. It seems like adventure titles might be back on the rise, with these games generating buzz for the first time in a long while. Now all we need is the quality adventure experience to back it up, and we'll be good to go.
Now for the disappointing part. Dreamfall, while entertaining, doesn't seem to do much of anything in the gameplay area, and sadly only succeeds in presenting a story, and not much else. Set in the year 2219 after a worldwide collapse (not sure if it was completely economic or what), you'll be playing the, a young woman living in the Casablanca of tomorrow. The has a bad case of college drop out lethargy, and is trying to find a purpose to life when her ex-boyfriend Reza vanishes while working on a big scoop for his newspaper, The Hand That Bites. Throw in a couple more playable characters, an alternate universe where magic is real, some ghostly visions, and The gets thrown into the adventure of a lifetime.
Now, we've all heard that before from games like this, but does the story really live up to it? I found that the first few chapters of the game were relatively boring. They don't quite have the hook you need to get pulled into the game. If you can last through it, things finally heat up in the middle, but most of the time, you'll be relying on the game's presentation to keep you going.
While the people aren't done as well as they could be, the game is designed well, and looks the part. The voice acting is on par with the rest of the game, and doesn't annoy, but between it and the soundtrack there's nothing worth getting excited about.
I've said nothing about gameplay because of just that. There's so little here to talk about that this game might as well play itself, and present you with a 15 hour movie instead. Fighting is a joke, the game seems to involve far too much stealth for its own good, and the single gameplay improvement they've made provides you exactly zero real benefit. By clicking the left stick you can enter observation mode, and drag a cursor around the screen looking at stuff. All you can do is look; you can't use this as an easy way to interact with things or anything of the sort, so it's really a wasted feature.
All in all, I'm seriously disappointed with this game. I really do want adventure titles to come back with a vengeance, and the only way we're going to get that is to see more cross-genre games that incorporate action or FPS gameplay with a heavy adventure base. As always, the truth is in the gameplay. When it's as non-existent as this, you know exactly what I'll say. Walk on by.
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