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    Nevertales: The Beauty Within

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    JustTheFacts

    Posts: 1597
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    Age: 51
    Location: Western Australia

    Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by JustTheFacts on Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:56 am

    Nevertales: The Beauty Within
    by MadHead Games - October, 2013

    Available at:
    Big Fish as Collector's Edition / Standard Edition



    Just when you were finally done with work for the day, a stranger comes knocking loudly at your door. When you answer there's no one... no one except a helpless baby abandoned on your doorstep. You follow after the stranger, hoping to find some answers but are drawn into a mystery that beckons you into a castle-like mansion. Who does the baby belong to? Why were you chosen? The answers will surprise you in Nevertales: The Beauty Within, a page-turning Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure game!

    The Collector’s Edition includes:

    • Three bonus chapters
    • Multiple collectables and achievements
    • Sugar Rush Hidden Object Puzzle
    • Integrated Strategy Guide

    For the Standard Edition

    Click images to enlarge
    __

    JustTheFacts

    Posts: 1597
    Join date: 2013-09-01
    Age: 51
    Location: Western Australia

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by JustTheFacts on Thu Oct 24, 2013 4:01 am

    How Can I Wait Until Monday?!
    Sunny Sunny Sunny Sunny Sunny

    BASED ON DEMO

    FIRST IMPRESSIONS

    First impressions can be just plain wrong. This game starts out with an unacceptably long load, but everything else is just amazing, and once you’ve loaded it once, the game never takes long thereafter. And within minutes I was completely hooked.

    The opening was very professionally done, top quality production values all the way, but it is not the overly dramatic. We, the detective or is it defence lawyer?, arrive home after a successful case. Nothing much to it really, even when we find a baby on our doorstep.

    But the guy in the hat arrives, and things pick up! We’re off to a deserted mansion that may or may not be real, and many adventures ensue. We find a (mechanical) assistant, an interactive jump map (that indicates only what you want it to, it can be adjusted in the options menu), and a locket to get us started, along with our notebook.

    The gameplay is the amazing thing about this game. It is almost completely new, both puzzles and HOPs. There are 20 HOPs (including CE chapter), and endless puzzles. They are original, quirky and sometimes just plain hard. Many items in the locations are hiding behind others that you must move, mini-games and puzzles often only give you part of the picture, and each HOP is different.

    Just one example, within the second HOP, you must find a number of silhouetted items. But they are not exactly the item you are looking for. For example, a silhouette of a bird is a ‘bird symbol’, the required item is ANY bird, not a direct replica. In this particular HOP, the scene where you must find things is a stained glass window with many small pieces joining together to make an image.

    In another HOP, the items on the list, when found, reveal a fragmented object (FROG). When all pieces are found, you can use the object to interact within the scene for the inventory item.

    The mini-games gave me a bit of a headache.  They were all new too, and sometimes it took me a while to catch onto what I should be doing (HINT: Keep the book open when finding fragments of symbols in the general location). In the case I just mentioned, even the otherwise very good SG and the not-as-helpful-as-I’d-like map left me confused.

    CE BLING!

    This game is definitely a CE game. Extras include gallery with music, wallpaper, concept art. 20 Replayable HOs. Collectible roses. Achievements. SG. And 3 bonus chapters/games. One is the usual follow on. One can only be played once you have collected all the roses. And then, something they call “Sugar Rush Hidden Object Puzzle”. One of them is apparently constructed of hidden chapters.

    FAMOUS LAST WORDS

    In a year where we have been wowed over and over again with games that capture our imagination and challenge our brain cells, this one is right up there as one of the best of the year. I wouldn’t even try to resist!

    I Recommend This Game

    genkicoll

    Posts: 5689
    Join date: 2011-12-28
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    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by genkicoll on Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:36 pm

    Awesome review, Justie, thank you! Sunny


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     - Thomas Edison

    genkicoll

    Posts: 5689
    Join date: 2011-12-28
    Age: 40
    Location: Pacific Northwest

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by genkicoll on Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:23 pm

    Nevertales: The Beauty Within (IHOG)

    There are plenty of options to choose from on this one, with separate sliders for Music, Ambient sounds, Effects, and Voice, plus full-screen, aspect correction, and custom cursor.  Whee~!  At the top right of the options menu is a ?, which will give you some useful information at a glance.  Helpful for the newbies to the genre, for certain.

    We have FOUR difficulty settings to choose from:  Casual Reader, Bookworm, Scholar, and my favorite, Choose Your Own!! Happy bounce  Custom settings, my FAVORITE! Heart  Rather than type it all out, I'll show you what the custom options are:

    AND even better, the difficulty can be changed at any time during gameplay.  These aren't the options I chose, by the way, just the basics when I looked Wink


    Now that we have the technical stuff out of the way, wow.  Just wow.  I've never seen a game start this way.  Not ever.  I didn't read the description of the game before I started, so I was blindsided.

    Using a HINT during the adventure portion of the game will give you a directional arrow without discharging your hint.

    The task bar is retractable, and can be locked in a open position, if you wish.  Items in the task bar with circle underneath them need some kind of interaction.  Click on the items to zoom in and see what needs to be done.  You may have to open a box to see what's inside, or combine with something else in your inventory.

    The journal is a cell phone, and is extremely important to your gameplay.  It's located on the bottom right side of the screen, and there are multiple tabs to click on:  Notes, which has no spoilers, and records the all-important things you MUST know to solve puzzles (many of which I'd forgotten about!)  This also shows you how long you've been playing; Map, which is interactive if you've chosen it to be (in the custom settings) and DOES have a jump-to option (you can also access the map without going through the cell phone -- just look slightly to the left of the cell phone button); To-do List, which I never used; and Achievements, of which there are 3 tiers, with a total of 24 possible.

    We have a helper by the name of Gears.  Gears the owl.  What a cutie he is!  Don't be thrown off by the word 'cute' here -- We don't have a lot of interaction with Gears, only when there's something out of our reach (nice not to have to find a ladder every time! Laugh  )  Despite Gears and the adorable character we meet at the beginning of the game, this game is not saccharine in the least.  Cute moments, but definitely not the primary (or even secondary!) thrust of the story!

    The characters are colorful, and very well voiced.  I was surprised to see two cutscenes with singing (à la Disney,) but I can forgive those short lapses Snicker

    There are a multitude of ways that we interact with the game.  We interact with books in two ways:  The first is where we have the narrator read a line of two, then we find a couple of items hidden on the page to progress the story and have more read.  In the end we get a new item.  An excellent way to keep the players interested in the story!  The second kind is where we open a book, and there's a hollow space inside.  We then need to find fragmented objects across the scene (don't close the book!) and when you find the final piece, you have an item to help you on your way.

    We have a couple of different kinds of actual hidden object scenes.  There are your "typical" interactive HOS -- Items listed in white can be found right away, yellow items are under/behind something, green items need interaction.  There's a HOS type where every time you find something, you see sparkles.  Sparkles? Huh?  I had sparkles turned off! rollingpin  It took me a few moments to realize that it's because every listed item we find has something hidden behind it, and the sparkles are to let us know that we need to grab these pieces.  It's actually a good thing in this case, trust me!  The last kind of HOS has four locked tabs at the bottom.  We have to unlock each box with whatever shape you see (ie. keys, spades, etc.) to see the lists.  Once you find all four items on a tab, you'll find an item hidden behind it, which you will have to place in the scene.  Place all four items to finish the scene.  Highly interactive, I love it!  These scenes were so interesting that I didn't want to use a hint AT ALL!

    Mini-game instructions can be found in the bottom right corner of the screen.

    Collector's Edition content:

    • Bonus Chapter
    • Integrated Strategy Guide
    • 45 roses
    • 28 Morphing items, found in the hidden object puzzles
    • Achievements
    • 8 Downloadable Music Tracks
    • 6 Concept Art, showing before and after (for a total of 12 pics)
    • 10 Wallpapers (NOT just glorified screens from the game!)
    • 28 replayable HO Puzzles (tracks time and accuracy!)
    • Sugar Rush

    Bonus Chapter
    The bonus is told from another character's point of view, and takes place after the main game ends.  Be sure to keep an eye out for roses, there are still 11 to find!  You get to the chapter by hitting the 'Play' button once you've finished the main game.

    Instead of having a helper, you will see that there's something else in that space.  Keep an eye on it, you'll need to click it, then click the screen to accomplish some actions!

    This is one of the best bonus chapters I've ever played, with the content just as interesting and fun to play as the main game.

    There is a point where we had a choice to make, and I have no idea what would happen if I had made the opposite choice.  Will have to see next time I play~!

    Just a note that there is one mini in the bonus chapter that requires dexterity (and/or great patience,) and that the final puzzle was timed, in a manner of speaking.  You have to accomplish something whilst being attacked, and these attacks undo a bit of your progress, so faster is better.

    Hidden Chapters and Roses

    The hidden chapters are unlocked when you find all 45 roses -- 37 in main game and 11 in the bonus chapter.  The game brilliantly tracks your rose findings, and you'll see them in the bottom left corner of the screen (underneath Gears the Owl.)  If the rose there is gray, you still need to find the rose on your current location.  If you click on the rose at any time during gameplay, it will pop up showing ALL of the roses to be found.  Found roses are red, unfound are gray, and empty spots show locations you haven't been to yet.  If you hover the cursor over any rose (of whatever color,) it will tell you the location of the rose you've missed so that you can go back and find it.

    But wait...!  What if you miss a rose and can't get back to the location? Dunno  Oh nooo~!  The Scream

    Not to worry!  The devs thought of that!  If you go to the Extras section, there are three things there:  Gallery, Achievements, and Rose Hunt.  Click on Rose Hunt, then click on any gray rose to travel to that location and find your missing rose(s)! Offering  Once you've found ALL of the roses, click on each of them to create a puzzle piece.  Once all 45 pieces are placed, the hidden chapters will be unlocked.

    There are three hidden chapters, each with a different theme.  In the first chapter, watch for clovers -- there are four hidden here!  You finish the chapter, add the token to the middle book... and now you're stuck!

    Now what? Overreaction  AHHHH, STUCK!

    Guess what?  I missed something!

    Back to the Extras section, and there's a Collectibles section that I didn't even see! (Top left)  You have to complete this section before you can go on to the second and third hidden chapters!  In this section are NINE sub-sections.  Click on any area to go back into the game and grab the collectibles that, if you're like me, you didn't even know to watch for... Or perhaps they aren't unlocked until you finish the game, I don't know *shrugs*  There's one at each location, for a total of 45 collectibles, and the hint button WILL help you find them, if you need help.  The area where our helpful owl was will show you which item you're looking for, very helpful!

    NOW you can complete the last two chapters, #3, then #2.  Finishing the last chapter will unlock:

    Sugar Rush
    What is sugar rush, you ask?  Well first you eat loooots of chocolate Chocolate num imatruffle   Oh, you mean as pertains to the game!  Right!  Sugar Rush unlocks a HOS with 100 items to find!  Just one more little bonus to this CE that has SO many extras, already!

    The main game ended well, but the bonus chapter is EXCELLENT and gives us some great closure.  This is the BEST Collector's Edition that I have ever played... one of the best games, period!  The graphics are very nice, the music never invasive, the gameplay and story riveting... I just can't tell you how much I enjoyed this game!

    . . . *scrolls back and looks at novel-like review*

    Oh wait, yes I can!  I already did! Belly laugh

    All told, the timer clocked me at 7 hours, 14 minutes.  Remove 20-30 minutes for the times I jumped up to do something without pausing the game, and you STILL have almost 7 hours of gameplay OH!  That's something we just don't see anymore!  I consider myself an advanced (though not expert) gamer, so that's really saying something!

    I'm sure I've missed some things I wanted to mention, but I think I'll stop here.  I HIGHLY recommend this game, and if you can swing it, the CE.  I had been in a game funk, but this game completely brought me out of it!

    My final thought is that if all CE's were made like this, NO ONE would complain about them not being worth the extra money!!


    _________________
    If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.
     - Thomas Edison

    djrum

    Posts: 485
    Join date: 2013-08-12
    Location: Ohio

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by djrum on Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:49 am

    Thanks, Genki, for mentioning the "Sugar Rush." I didn't see that.

    I'll go back in and play. Nevertales has a permanent residence on my computer!

    RenaissanceMom

    Posts: 663
    Join date: 2013-01-05
    Location: NYC

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by RenaissanceMom on Wed Nov 20, 2013 1:51 pm

    Thanks to all the rave reviews here, I just bought it using the "BIG" sale code. And knowing how rarely I even contemplate buying CEs, that's saying a lot, lol. Big smile

    genkicoll

    Posts: 5689
    Join date: 2011-12-28
    Age: 40
    Location: Pacific Northwest

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by genkicoll on Wed Nov 20, 2013 2:04 pm

    I know that it's all personal preference on these games, so I hope that you enjoy it as much as we have!


    _________________
    If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.
     - Thomas Edison

    RenaissanceMom

    Posts: 663
    Join date: 2013-01-05
    Location: NYC

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by RenaissanceMom on Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:02 pm

    Well I just did part of the demo and loved it so far. I actually stopped early so I could buy the game and play in its entirety. Smile

    Esme

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    Location: The Motor City

    Re: Nevertales: The Beauty Within

    Post by Esme on Mon Apr 21, 2014 5:06 pm

    Gears is kind of freaking me out. 

    Glad to see he's not integral to the game.  faints

      Zoo Tek Phoenix

      Current date/time is Thu Apr 24, 2014 11:41 am