Author Topic: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert  (Read 5704 times)  Share 

Grok

    • I can help with animation
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  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!

[embed=640,400]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZYeKXQvgRY[/embed]


Trailer



Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert

20150927 updated version 1.1

Download
at the AGS games page, ordinary link as a zip-file, mirror as a setup with installer

In World War 1 Jacqueline White was a mechanic, an observer and a pilot in the French Air force. When the war was over she started flying around the world, taking odd jobs and finding adventures.
In this adventure she has been hired by the Two Bad Pennies Movie studios. Soon mysterious events starts happening.

By
Grok: art, story, coding
HandsFree: music, coding

Proofreading and test-playing:  morganw
« Last Edit: 05 Oct 2015, 22:47 by Grok »

Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #1 on: 06 Sep 2015, 18:17 »
I just finished this game. I can't understand why no one has posted to this thread. I hope that people are playing this. If not, then play it!!

I really like this game.

It's not often that I think that the strength of the game is the graphics and animation but in this case, the environment is just so well done that I have to start with it. Anyone can see just from the screenshots that the art is exceptional. I also liked the game system, including modes of travel, ample play area (in terms of rooms and variety of locations) and the ingame hint system.

The next best feature is probably the story. It's a real art to match up the length and depth of a plot with the progress of the game but here they match perfectly. I don't want to give away too much but the story progresses well from introduction to characters and familiarizing the player with the setting to the actual story and then...well, you'll just have to play to find out!

I really liked the puzzles. They offered a nice combination of object puzzles (e.g. open the box, solve the code, press the buttons till something happens, etc...), inventory puzzles, dialogue and even some arcade sequences. Most of the puzzles are creative and fresh and are a real strong point of the game.

The hint system is a nice touch. I think it's a good in-between to accommodate the fact that some players are strong puzzle-solvers, or enjoy more challenging puzzles whereas some are not as skilled and might get frustrated more easily. Giving the user a context-sensitive hint allows each player to progress at the rate that he/she finds best suited.

I think my only criticism of the game is that I found that there was a bit too much "do this; do that; go here; go there". I assume that it was part of the progress of the story, allowing things to unfold without slowing things down with too many puzzles, yet not AS fast as using cutscenes where the user just watches, but it took some time to get into the game before the puzzles started as a result. This does not diminish from my high rating; it's just something to think about.

In short, if you haven't played yet, PLAY IT! Congrats to Grok and team for a really good release.

SHADOW

PS...oh, and save often!
« Last Edit: 06 Sep 2015, 22:51 by Shadow1000 »

Mandle

  • NO PIXEL LEFT BEHIND!!!
  • Mandle worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #2 on: 10 Sep 2015, 01:02 »
This is the next game on my to-play list for sure! I've just been too busy finishing all the MAGS entries (and working on my own) to get to it yet. But this game looks exciting as hell and to see such a positive review from Shadow1000 is getting me extra-pumped!!!

Mandle

  • NO PIXEL LEFT BEHIND!!!
  • Mandle worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #3 on: 13 Sep 2015, 06:55 »
I just now finished the game and here are my thoughts:

Books are just words, right? Movies are just single frames played really fast, right? AGS games are just a bunch of rooms and objects, characters, and whatever tied together by some code, right?

We all know how each works, especially AGS, but sometimes....and only sometimes in a very long while...somebody manages to combine the words in a book, the frames of a movie, or the structure of AGS in just the right way to create magic...

The magic where the reader/viewer/player starts to forget the interface of words/images/game and makes the jump from their everyday reality into the world that the author has created for them...

This game falls solidly into the category of such magic...

The story, characters, gameplay, mystery, intrigue of this game just grabbed me instantly by the short and curlies and propelled me forwards. There was never a moment when I lost interest in knowing what the story was going to throw my way next...

And the puzzles: OMG BRILLIANT!!! Foreshadowing and logic used perfectly in almost every case!!!

All this being said: The game does need just a bit more polishing before it could be a sellable commercial release, but not that much: There are a lot of missing interactions (easily solved in a day or two) and one puzzle in particular needs just an extra nudge...

SPOILER ALERT:
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
Yeah...it's the Oasis movie in the movie title game...Just a nudge more and it wouldn't have had to resort to hints, but Shadow1000 was right when he mentioned that the puzzle broke the rules of the word game you were supposed to be playing. There is no way to know that the character will say the FULL name of the movie when you select the Oasis option...I understand that this is a big part of the puzzle instead of just making it a simple word game...But this needs a bit more foreshadowing somehow...I know that it's on the poster but the game teaches the player that observing the posters will add them to the list they can choose from...Maybe another case earlier on in the puzzle where the full title was not included in the list but the character said the full title when it was selected as a foreshadowing hint? I dunno...

The only other thing that broke my immersion a bit was:

SPOILER ALERT:
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
The floating lantern in the mines. I know it's a lot of work and very fiddly to get just right but if the character walkcycle could be tweaked just right to make it look like she was carrying the lantern seamlessly then this segment of the game would be very atmospheric and mysterious instead of looking (sorry) just a little bit silly...

I feel that if just a few issues were tweaked then you already have a potential commercial release on your hands right then...I would already pay $5 or so to play this game, but I would probably dish out $8 or more if just a little more polishing was done... 

I am going to use this write-up to comment on the game and also put it up for pick of the month...

And also I think we will be seeing the game at the AGS Awards next year...

MAGIC!!!

Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #4 on: 13 Sep 2015, 17:15 »
@ Mandle:

Gee, whiz! I write reviews and opinions on games; you write poetry!

Well done

SHADOW

Grok

    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with story design
    •  
  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #5 on: 14 Sep 2015, 17:30 »
Thanks Shadow and Mandle, Thank you for your nice words. I'm a bit overwhelmed.:-D

Mandle

  • NO PIXEL LEFT BEHIND!!!
  • Mandle worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #6 on: 15 Sep 2015, 01:10 »
I think I have found a reason for the quietness over this release:

Grok, you should link to the AGS game page in the first post instead of direct to downloads. You can even put one download (zip) as the main link and the other (installer) as a mirror.

This way players can easily rate and comment on the game. At the moment players must actively search for the game to do so and few will probably bother to do that. Also the download counter on the AGS page will actually mostly represent the real numbers...

Grok

    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with story design
    •  
  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #7 on: 15 Sep 2015, 05:18 »
---
Grok, you should link to the AGS game page in the first post instead of direct to downloads. You can even put one download (zip) as the main link and the other (installer) as a mirror.

...

Thank you for the tip. I've made that change. Learning new things all the time :)

Mandle

  • NO PIXEL LEFT BEHIND!!!
  • Mandle worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #8 on: 22 Sep 2015, 18:23 »
SERIOUSLY THOUGH AGS COMMUNITY!!!

Why is there not just a bit more chatter in here over the release of this incredible game???

Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #9 on: 23 Sep 2015, 11:56 »
I'm a bit surprised on that myself Mandle. This game is utterly fantastic. A totally different look and feel to many AGS games, and yet fantastic in pretty much every way. Storyline, animations, puzzles, this one ticks all the boxes of AGS greatness(least for me).

Maybe it's a niche game that only the two of us and Shadow appreciate.... ;)
Seriously folks... check this game out. It's brilliant!!

cat

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  • cat worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!cat worked on a game that won an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White; Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #10 on: 23 Sep 2015, 22:01 »
Just finished it! What a great game!

I guess that some people might be put off by the graphics from this thread because they don't look that good on the screenshots. But I must say, they work really well in-game, also with the great cutscene animations.

The most noticeable features of the game:
- The setting. This is really unique - a female stunt pilot in a 1920ies film company - never seen that before in a game.
- The soundtrack. HandsFree totally captured that silent movie music feel and the themes depending on the location.
- The puzzles. A broad variety, always fitting the storyline, the right difficulty and a clever hint system.

A puzzle I loved was
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
finding all guns. I like hidden object games and never can find the last item. Guess what, this time it was really not there - simply awesome.
Also the film titles
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
are a great take on insult sword fighting. I think the posters were great and I looked at all of them even before there was this puzzle. Good hint about looking in the vicinity of the studio, I totally missed the poster first. The Oasis title, as mentioned by others, was too cryptic.
Small issue
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
as mentioned in the hint and tips, the in-game hint for decrypting the message does not make any sense unless you have found the other note.
I also enjoyed those other puzzles, like
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
the code decryption, the knocking puzzle, the secret box,...

I also liked the smooth game-flow. Once you completed a task, something would happen somewhere else to keep you going. Very good pacing over all.
I like that you can look at all characters and get an explanation who they are. I get always confused in movies who is who if there are more than, say, three characters, so beeing able to resort to this helped a lot.

At the beginning I was a bit confused by the interface, but it turned out to work pretty well and smooth.

What could be improved is the responses to looking at objects. I like that there are not that many hotspots so you focus on the game and story instead of looking at tons of items, but if there is an eye icon over a hotspot, there should be a response.

Also some dialog options should be removed later during the game, when they don't make sense anymore. Instead there should be updated options about recent events.

Anyway, this game is highly recommended!

Grok

    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with story design
    •  
  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #11 on: 24 Sep 2015, 06:03 »
@ Uziel
Thank you. We appreciate your support.

@ Cat
Thank you.

I totally agree with you on the sound track. The music HandsFree has made does a great job of creating the atmosphere of the game.

An update is on the way, taking care of the response to looking at objects thing and some other stuff. 

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #12 on: 24 Sep 2015, 14:28 »
 (roll)  I'm playing it by one week, beautiful music and style, plot very interested and original, but ...

Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
are stuck from letter puzzle codify
  advice ?
I do not know English well I could make mistakes in writing

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #13 on: 24 Sep 2015, 16:15 »
Did you find
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
another letter that is already decoded?

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #14 on: 24 Sep 2015, 16:20 »
Did you find
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
another letter that is already decoded?

Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
I've found the 2 sheets, and the second to be encoded, but do not understand the logic.
  :(
I do not know English well I could make mistakes in writing

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #15 on: 24 Sep 2015, 17:22 »
Add spoiler tag for Hidden:
In the already decoded note it says: 1,4/4.
If you look at the striked letters you can see that the first and fourth out of every four letters are striked.
The coded note says: 1,4,5/6.

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #16 on: 24 Sep 2015, 21:03 »
(roll)
thanks a lot HandsFree. I finished the game, really compliments Grok to the original idea, I also liked the music, grand final.
I do not know English well I could make mistakes in writing

Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #17 on: 26 Sep 2015, 17:32 »
I just finished the game and I must say it's a really great game, love the indy vibes!

Grok

    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with story design
    •  
  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #18 on: 27 Sep 2015, 13:14 »
Yol and Blondbraid;  Thank you :)

The upload now holds an updated version (done by Handsfree) that addresses many of the issues raised in this thread. It's a more polished version but not any big changes.

Grok

    • I can help with animation
    •  
    • I can help with backgrounds
    •  
    • I can help with characters
    •  
    • I can help with story design
    •  
  • Grok worked on a game that was nominated for an AGS Award!
Re: Jacqueline White: Bad Trouble in the Red Desert
« Reply #19 on: 04 Oct 2015, 20:47 »


Made a trailer for the game an posted it on YouTube.

[embed=640,400]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZYeKXQvgRY[/embed]
« Last Edit: 05 Oct 2015, 22:48 by Grok »