So Wonderfully Silly & Original! *****
BASED ON DEMO
I have had a copy of the beta survey for this game sitting in my pc for months, and somehow there was always something more appealing to play. Oh what a fool was I! But perhaps it was for the best. Fell in love with this clever and funny little gem before I’d played more than 10 minutes. Waiting until punchcard Monday is gonna drive me nuts, imagine my agony if I’d had to wait months!
SIGHTS & SOUNDS
The cartoon drawing, all whacky and surreal is reminiscent of Disney, in a deliberately tongue in cheek way. And top quality as well. The opening scenes with our wicked but lovelorn witch set up the style and feel of the game exactly. Throughout, everything looks and sounds crazy. And that is its appeal. The sheer over-the-top wackiness of the game. And if that prince doesn’t shut up his whimpering... Well, I’m just saying...
An attractiveness-challenged witch decides to bring her reluctant fiancé the Prince to the altar by magic. She turns him into a frog, and only a kiss from his fiancé can transform him back to life as a human. On offering her lips for a kiss, however, she is shocked that the frog prince refuses! And so she encloses him in glass and locks him up till he changes his mind.
You have been witnessing all this from hiding, but now the queen sees you and poof!, you are knocked out and come to in a cage. Eventually, you escape your cage, help the prince escape his, and set about getting outa here! The Prince seems to know what he’s doing, so you follow him through a portal to his true love’s castle, where he immediately gets himself in trouble again!
The game would be merely one of curiosity value if all it had going for it is the unusual look and story, though. What it also has is original gameplay. The puzzles are some new and uniquely designed, others are similar to other mini-games but with a quirky twist. The HOPs are also new, a fragmented object puzzle with many objects to find and fit together, and a kind of mini-puzzle as part of it. These are new, but not at all difficult.
This game also follows with the sort of action that includes the making of potions. Little quizzical differences make up the rest of the fun and imagination of this game. The journal has the story, and the story achievements, of which there are 5 or 6 shown as playing cards. There is no map, but there is an eye symbol that identifies active zones, on the easiest of 3 levels of difficulty. The inventory is above, the black bar comments below. The location is often slightly bigger than the screen, so you must make sure to look up and down, and from left to right.
As well as the achievements awarded within the game, you can win achievements that are recorded in the main menu only and these are fabulous! There are 4 glass display units – each for a different victim of the witch I assume. The first, at any rate, is the Frog Prince. You have 6 points of the story which yield a different animation of the frog. Bowing, for instance, or startlement. The really fun thing (for me, anyway, but I”m a big kid) is that you can save these little images as avatars. I am going to enjoy that.
This game will not be for everyone (and boy, I think I’ve said that 3 times this week), but it is well worth a trial to see the funny side of gaming. Think Dark Parables meets Royal Envoy, and you’ll be heading in the right direction, but you’ve still got a way to go. I recommend this game!