Author Topic: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms (Deluxe Edition)  (Read 57387 times)

Vel

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #60 on: 22 Jul 2007, 12:45 »
My oh my, first the infinity string, now this - it's a great year for AGS games, indeed!
I played it for about an hour, and I must say it feels very Sierry, in the best possible way, it somehow reminds me of the king's quest and quest for glory games' atmosphere. Although I haven't fully explored the possibilities of alternate endings and solutions, I congratulate you for doing the effort to implement such thought by many unnecessary things. It should really enhance the experience.
Congratulations on completing the game again, I'll post an in-depth review once I finish it.

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #61 on: 22 Jul 2007, 15:30 »
A game like this DEMANDS a full review, but I don't know where to post it.

So I'll write it now, and post it here. I'll try to keep it spoiler-light. That said, if you want absolutely everything about the game to be a surprise, don't read on. There is also a spoiler for Full Throttle in there, because some things are too glorious to hide behind spoiler tags.

A Tale of Two Kingdoms (v. 1.1)
Publisher: Crystal Shard (Independent)
Release: 2007

SUMMARY: I expected this game to be as spectacularly bad as its introduction, and it continually disappointing me by being very, very good.

AToTK vs. Grim Fandango, Round One, FIGHT!

A Tale of Two Kingdoms is more fun than it has any right to be. Between a clumsy introduction, flat characters, constant and annoying death, one major side-plot that fails catastrophically, and another major side-plot that fails more subtly, it ought to have been an ordeal.

But it's more fun than large swaths of Grim Fandango, which is both upsetting and gratifying.  Grim Fandango is more gorgeous, more funny, more challenging, more memorable, and more quotable, full of clever moments and shining wit and ingenious set-pieces, the kind of game that theoretically converts non-adventure gamers into adventure gamers with its brilliance. So it's shocking to see A Tale of Two Kingdoms succeed in places where Grim Fandango fails. It's like seeing a puppy crush a Sherman tank. This is also why it is gratifying.

How is this possible? Since this is a spoiler-free review, I'll explain with reference to a hypothetical example.

KQVI-Lite:

In Hypothetical Quest (or, if you prefer, Strange Flamenco) you meet a young boy whose dog has been captured by a giant aphid.

LucasArts version: You improvise a Giant Aphid Costume from a yellow robe, wooden legs, etc.

KQVI version: Killing the aphid requires fixing a broken flyswatter. Alternatively, you can call on the Ladybug Queen to truss up the aphid, but only if you saved her life earlier. Saving the Ladybug Queen is impossible if you traded the Ladybug Pendant for the key to the Flyswatter Shop, and you can't fix the swatter if you sacrificed it to enter the Ladybug Queen's realm. Thus, partially solving each puzzle renders both impossible, and the game unwinnable.

A Tale of Two Kingdoms version: If you won a pen in a game of quoits OR stole one, THEN used it to forge a letter and save the Friendly Local Urchin from hanging (OR broke him out of jail), AND found the Potion of Spider Transformation, you can turn the urchin into a Spider Warrior, who eats the aphid. Alternatively, if you reforged the Flyswatter of the Tuatha, you can swat the aphid and save the dog. Otherwise, the dog dies.

But! The death of the dog does not prevent you from finishing the game; you have a world to save, after all. The ending will change, possibly by the addition of a downer-scene in which you see the little boy crying for his dog, and you may be locked out of some other puzzles. But you can ALWAYS win, and there are a lot of dogs to rescue, and each one gives you a little score boost and more dog-rescuing tools.

Yes, I intend to abuse this metaphor as far as it will go.

So although AToTK seems KQVI-inspired, it never makes aphid food of the player. It might tantalize with a now-unrescueable dog, and the dog-rescuing puzzle may be genuinely unfair, but it's still optional. The weakest endings may be dreary, but they are also victories on one level or another, and they point to places where improvement is possible. And when an aphid costume absolutely must be made, multiple sets of pieces are available, and if you've lost some of them, somebody will find a way to supply you with another. The more you of them you find unaided, the higher your score goes. This system, in which one's degree of success can be read in one's score and ending, allows the nastiest frustrations to be avoided.

This sounds like a cop-out, a game that lets the player refuse to play it. But it isn't, because the player always has something to aim for, and a convenient NPC is always ready to suggest exactly what that is.  Yes, there are a few situations in which one can walk into danger without a needed item, but the game disables saving in these potentially nasty cases, and often autosaves immediately before. And even when the best endings are locked out, the story still has some impetus. Not only is the game always completable, it is impossible, as far as I can tell, for the player to be locked out of an ending in which good triumphs on some level.

AToTK allows multiple paths to victory, and always keeps side-quests open so that there's something to do, and this is why AToTK, played casually, with no regard for solving ALL of the puzzles, is just more fun than several sections of Grim Fandango.

Don't get me wrong - Grim Fandango has a lot of fun parts. But frustrating sections drain adventure games of their fun quickly. The early segments of Grim Fandango, as well as a few puzzles at mid-game, are particularly bad for this. Grim Fandango, tied as it was to an extremely linear story, couldn't afford too many optional puzzles or situations. It thus became a sort of specialized torture machine whenever the player hit a stumbling block. In many ways, an adventure game is judged on its failures. What I remember most vividly about King's Quest V are the places where it was grotesquely unfair.

Being as broad and player-friendly as AToTK is hard. The side-quests effectively double the playable size of the game without doubling its frustration factor, but make things very hard on the designers and testers. If the player can end up holding certain items late in the game on some playthroughs, but not others, meticulous planning is required. One could have each object solve one puzzle and one puzzle only, but that's boring and predictable, and AToTK eschews that sort of cheap trick, instead electing to increase its design burden by giving some optional objects up to three uses. I suspect that Adventure Game Player Heaven is filled with multiple-use, optional items- as is Adventure Game Designer Hell.

In spite of this complicatedness- and it was sometimes possible to see the gears whirring, in the forms of shifting event triggers - I ran into very few bugs, and generally, when I wanted to try something reasonable but game-breaking, the game explained why I couldn't. Why can't I light a lantern with a candle up on the wall? It's too high, or it's at a lousy angle, or whatever - the game explained. There were exceptions, of course; ordering other people to look at themselves or other people gave strangely uninformative messages, but in general, everything worked. In a game of this scope, this is magnificent. The designers of AToTK really understand the importance of attention to implementation detail. And spell-checking.

So, no matter how many arbitrary deaths AToTK throws at you, it makes it very clear that it does not hate you, and wants you to win. And so, if you're playing to win, this is an intensely fun game. If you don't mind a bit of a downer in the ending, and aren't too picky about writing, that's all that should matter. Just play it.

Summary of Pros:

* Forgiving gameplay.
* Lots of fun things to do.
* Polished execution, at least along the main branch.
 
On the Other Hand...

But while AToTK dramatically outdoes the commercial classics in many ways, it fails to measure up to them in others. Yes, it's much better than the weaker sections of Grim Fandango, but it isn't as good as the whole game. This may have something to do with the lack of a massive budget and long experience, but there are other reasons why AToTK sometimes fails to meet that bar.

First, the story is only engaging about half of the time. In theory, it should work better than that, since it's a stronger story than most games get. A gentle opening is interrupted by a series of tense scenes that give the hero a problem to deal with. Complications occur, little set-pieces ratchet the tension up, there's a wide-open midgame, and the whole deal is tied up neatly in the end. There are no subplots that involve searching for Six Spirit Gems to reforge the Dagger of Plottiness. There are few fetch-quests, and they're usually disguised or complicated subtly. When the hero wants to help people, it's because they have real problems to deal with, not because they've lost Random Object No. 152.

So, what's the problem?

Engaging stories demand engaging characters. Not well-written characters - a flat character can drive a decent story, if the player's given control over that character's destiny. But the ones that the player spends the most time with should be interesting. This does not happen.

In AToTK, the player has two sidekicks. Consider the more interesting one. He's pretty likeable, offering useful advice and quirky asides. One optional, totally incidental scene that does not involve the player, or, for that matter, any real action by this NPC, managed, somehow, to perfectly solidify his character for me. Yet his role in the story is minimal. He dispenses exposition, magic, and a secret that moves the story forward, and that's about it. But if he were threatened in the endgame, rather than a character I cared absolutely nothing for, it would have been two, maybe three times better (+- 5% error). This may be purely subjective; the developers clearly tried to make the threatened character interesting, with side plots and so on. But it didn't work for me.

And I don't think this is entirely a fancy on my part, because it seems that most of the more interesting characters in the game have bit parts, while the key parts are given to boring characters. The villain is, in particular, an astounding case. The writers of AToTK manage to do almost everything right. It is as if they assiduously followed a checklist of things to do to make an interesting villain:

A) Make sure the villain has a specific motivation.
B) Have him or her create horrible predicaments for the hero.
C) Indirectly deliver info on the villain via another character.
D) Don't let the villain fight fair. The hero should win in spite of the odds.
E) Make it possible for the player to see where the villain lives, and explore that space. This fleshes out the villain more than a speech ever could.

The writers do all of these things, and yet, incredibly, AToTK has one of the most boring villains ever to mar a good game - and there's a LOT of competition. He/she makes Mordack look like Iago. It is as if, somewhere along the line, their villain had been transmuted from gold into lead.

There are a number of possible reasons for the weakness of the villain. The connection between the villain and the mystery plot is never fully solidified during the main, mandatory plotline, so, in many playthroughs, the villain seems to rise out of nowhere. I suspect that fiddling more with the mystery plot would address this, but I'm reluctant to do this - more on that below. And even when the villain appears, he/she has absolutely nothing of interest to say. So, scratch one villain.

But what about the Loyal Sidekick, the one who can fight and helps you solve puzzles at key points and so on? Surely that character is even cooler than the one who delivers exposition and clues? Surely the character who is closely connected with the hero through past exploits, who swaps banter with him in the opening, who is set up to be important, who acts as a surrogate PC in at least one scene, and (SPOILER)
Spoiler: ShowHide
does critical things in the endgame
is interesting, right?

No, for that would defy the First Law of AToTK Writing: "The more important a piece of writing is, the less likely it is to be good." Until the endgame, your Loyal Sidekick is a glorified treasure chest. During the endgame, there is a slight improvement, but given all the things this character could say or do to respond to what happens, said character seems like a poseable mannequin.

But the side characters? Some of them are wonderful. They have little flashes of wit and character and good writing, and though the dialogue often ranges from bland to blander, there's just enough spice there to keep interest up. They aren't fighting the First Law, after all, so they can be cool.

If you are skeptical of the First Law, consider the introduction. The opening chapters neatly and effectively drop the hero into the intrigue, but the damage has already been done. The intro text is horrendous. It wants badly to be Epic, Dark, and Mythic, which is unfortunate in a game whose TITLE is Grand and Epic, but whose content is not. Everything that's cool in this game works on the level of individuals, not opposing armies, and everything that's fun works on the level of a fairy tale - personal, whimsical, silly, and a little spooky. Apparently, like scripting contextually-defined conversation topics for a major sidekick, writing a good intro is harder than it looks.

Another case of the First Law in action: the mystery plot. Mysteries are hard to get right, and AToTK doesn't. To the credit of the designers, the Exposition NPC mentioned above never claims that solving the mystery is a critical priority, and one can get a highly satisfactory ending without ever figuring it out. But the framing of the plot makes figuring out this mystery crucial on the level of the story, if not the actual gameplay, so everybody will want to solve it, I think. Alas, only astounding luck and dogged, even pointless, persistence can make that possible. After trying repeatedly and eventually reading a spoiler, I gave up and just got on with the main plot.

I do not think that this means I can't meaningfully review the game; a player who failed to solve a King's Quest V puzzle due to lack of dead fish would have something very meaningful to say about it.

The physical clues offered are horribly weak and semirelevant, or even misleading, and a few must be gathered under circumstances where a sane protagonist would be better off concentrating on other things. They are all red herrings. (If the developers wish to correct me on this, I hope they will. I found maybe three physical objects that could be construed as clues, which seems low for a game of this scope, but I solved quite a few little side-quests.) These clues are not obtained by actually investigating the mystery. The conversational clues are apparently better, as the culprit says something revealing, but these are easy to miss. I cannot say any more for fear of spoilers, but the way in which the player is asked to demonstrate knowledge of the solution unsatisfactory; the player is hit with a menu like a freight train.

The Dagger of Amon Ra used a similar mechanism to resolve its mystery, and relied on the acquisition of tiny, often nearly-unnoticeable clues for its resolution - but its solution was reasonable once the right clues were acquired. Perhaps I'm hopelessly dense, but, judging by the response on the Hints Thread for AToTK, this is not true. As far as I can tell, the mystery plot is just broken. Furthermore (and this is a mild spoiler),
Spoiler: ShowHide
even if there were real evidential justification for the identity of the culprit, there would be no narrative reason for it. Yes, in real life, sometimes the Master Criminal is somebody you hardly know, but that's not at all satisfying in a game.


What's really surprising is that the designers of AToTK manage to slip here in spite of setting up everything needed to make a good mystery plot possible. They have NPCs that wander around and show agency, that chat amongst themselves while the hero listens in, and that have motives. There's suspense, subterfuge, and so on. It's as if a good game had been written and, at the last minute, somebody decided to change the identity of the culprit and erase a few clues. This could be remedied with a few dialogue lines, a few objects, a few more interesting responses for showing certain things to certain people - but if it was not fixed between v 1.0 and v1.1, it probably won't be fixed between v1.1 and v 1.2.

But there's still hope that these, and other, issues of writing will be addressed, and AToTK will be the better for it. On to the other issues.

In a really complete adventure game, when the player was stuck, the detail and dialogue are fun enough to experience that frustration is allayed. AToTK has mixed success in this regard. You can't just wander around and look around at things and expect to be entertained for too long, because the descriptions and scenes are only sometimes interesting. The world is superficially engaging, but is, on closer inspection, hammered out of recycled bits and pieces; a castle looks like a Fantasy Castle is supposed to look, with little clear regard for function. Grim Fandango's Rubacava may have been a frustrating place to spend hours in, but at least it was Rubacava.

The town fares a bit better than most locations, as it's bustling and filled with people you can eavesdrop on, but the effect isn't as good as it could be. Maybe it's the surreal randomness of the wandering of the NPCs that does it. Maybe it's the architectural dullness of the houses, or the distanced viewpoint, or something like that. One tiny village in a corner of the map, with only two enterable dwellings, somehow manages to feel more convincing than the main town. I can't explain this; maybe it's the detailed art inside one of the homes, or something like that.

It should be noted that very few commercial or amateur graphic adventures really nail this, which is a shame, so AToTK probably shouldn't be held to a high standard in that regard - not until we all pony up $50 per download. But it's still sort of unfortunate.

Conclusion (or, It's Good, Honest!):

The difficulty about writing a review like this is that it's easy to explain what DIDN'T work without resorting to spoilers, but it's hard to explain what did. I've given a sort of general design justification for why AToTK is fun, but it ultimately comes down to specifics. It comes down to the concerted efforts the design team made to keep the world well-modeled - yes, a lot of it is generic, but it's still pretty good if you aren't wandering the same few screens in frustration. What really makes it work, I suppose, is that reasonable actions have reasonable responses, that there ARE some characters whom one can care about a little bit, even if they are minor, that the gameworld keeps changing in little, unexpected ways, that things are always happening, that you can get through much of the game without ever feeling like you've seen all of it... these things are hard to get across without spoiler specifics.

I guess you'll just have to take my word for it. Although the writing of A Tale of Two Kingdoms really does merit the hatchet job above, although some puzzles are a bit unfair (but optional), although there are strange and unexpected slipups, all of this is overwhelmed by the creators' consistent design competence, ambition, and dedication to making a fun game. As long as you don't try to do EVERYTHING, there's a good chance you'll like it.

Pros: In many ways, AToTK embodies good adventure game design. If you want to have fun, and can handle a few slightly underclued puzzles, go for it.

Cons: In many ways, AToTK embodies bad adventure game writing. Also, there are unfair and tetchy bits, so if you want to do everything... please, don't.

-----

Postscript:

Given the effectiveness of the apparent design philosophy of AToTK ("Okay, let's try to make a game that does not hate its player and in fact wants good things to happen to the player"), why isn't this approach used more often? For one thing, it is very hard to pull off. It demands obsessive playtesting and more design effort than might even be possible on a commercial game. It may force sacrifices on the level of storytelling and character development. It means writing scads of puzzles that some players will never see, which requires real self-discipline.

Now, it's been tried. King's Quest VI boasted an Easy Path and a Hard Path, with mixed success. It suffered from some severe game-wrecking situations - see the hypothetical Ladybug Queen case above. But Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis had three paths, none of which were too frustrating, and was also quite possibly the most intensely fun adventure game of all time, so there's hope.

But it's not the design problems that stymied this approach in commercial games. This type of design makes the game faster to complete - and a short play time was a deadly sin in a commercial adventure game. Nobody wants to pay $50 for a game that they finish in two days. One can replay, of course, but replaying is repetitive even in the best case, i.e., A Tale of Two Kingdoms or Quest for Glory.

As a result, in adventure games, a long ordeal is somehow seen as preferable to a short thrill ride. In its day, Full Throttle garnered endless complaints about its cutscenes and its short effective play time, apparently because a game in which, in the final playable sequence, the hero crawls on a speeding truck while said truck is CHASED BY AN AIRPLANE THAT SMASHES INTO IT AND DRAGS UNTIL IT IS HANGING OFF OF A CLIFF, FORCING THE HERO TO SEND THE VILLAIN PLUMMETING TO HIS DOOM AND ESCAPE BEFORE PLANE AND TRUCK FALL OFF THE CLIFF AND EXPLODE could apparently be improved with the addition of a maze, or perhaps a cutesy bit with mailing tubes.

Amateur developers are finally changing this, and we are finally getting good adventure games, but it's taken a long time. If somebody could just combine the polish, wit, and style of Grim Fandango with the common sense and player-friendliness of AToTK, we'd have something really incredible.
« Last Edit: 22 Jul 2007, 15:52 by Wellington »

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #62 on: 22 Jul 2007, 15:53 »
If there's any interest, I'd like to post a more spoilery commentary, too. I feel as if the above review doesn't quite give AToTK enough credit in specific terms.

Rui 'Trovatore' Pires

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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #63 on: 22 Jul 2007, 16:57 »
As long as you use spoiler tags abundantly, why not?
Reach for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.

Kneel. Now.

Never throw chicken at a Leprechaun.

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #64 on: 22 Jul 2007, 18:02 »
Okay, heavy spoilers ahead. REALLY HEAVY spoilers.

Every so often, I ran into something in AToTK that made me grin. Usually it was because the developers got something right in an unusual way. Sometimes it was because there was a moment of humor. There were too many of these to list, but I'll name a few.

Spoiler: ShowHide

1) Using a lantern on a candle in the monastery gave a sane response; I mentioned this in the review as the canonical Good Thing To Do in an adventure game. There were many other cases like this.

2) Digging at the end of a rainbow and finding a pot of gold there was fun. Admittedly, there may be a culture gap here for some people.

3) The multiple uses of the bag of sand. The real puzzle is realizing that one can fill a bag with sand and make a useful item out of it; after that, the places where it's used are fairly clear - not that I didn't bang my head against the "let's see if we can turn objects to ice and crush them" avenue of thought. The clever thing about this, I think, was that solving the second giant challenge required figuring this out, and reading the book in the monastery and using that gimmick to beat the goblin required figuring this out - but solving either puzzle effectively gave a clue to the other. It's extremely elegant - a multi-use item built by the player.

4) Realizing that the seemingly pointless ladder puzzle was really a way of cluing the player in to Branwyn's dagger-throwing ability. A-ha. A lesser game would have just had her mention, offhand, that she was good at that kind of thing.

5) The variety of wishes available at the well - and the fact that I could win even if I, perversely, chose "Health for Branwyn" for the sake of an honor point.

6) The whole rigamarole with the statue and the flute in the endgame was dubious, but the hidden room? Brilliant, though I needed a hint. Perhaps another clue to emphasize the change in the background would be nice?

7) Discovering the island, then piercing the illusions. A stronger emphasis on the map clue might have been good, as might more dialogue hints, but it was a good moment.

8) On the island, all of the special descriptions generated by the snake statuette. Perhaps a stronger indication that it no longer had much in the way of special power off of the island would have been good.

9) "Oh, so that's why she wants a pumpkin!"

10) The escape from the goblin camp - one of those situations where the first logical thing you think of works nicely, but still manages to be fun. I maintain that the most fun bits are the ones where a clue snaps together in the player's mind, and the whole sequence is solved without dying. Here, the river escape was cued by the earlier ocean escape, making it nicely intuitive.

11) The clue for the mirror lake puzzle - that is, that walking into the lake showed Whiteblade's reflection.

12) Leading the barghest back to the camp and letting my allies unleash the fury. Or hitting it with holy water. Either way was pretty great.

13) Rabbit dialogue box.

14) Throwing a dagger at the fleeing assassin, and seeing that reflected in the line about the dagger being on the floor. (I think there's a minor bug here, in that the game still acts as if you kept the dagger and had it confiscated in a message box that appears shortly after. But it's exceedingly minor. Also, it's really hard to click the dagger on the assassin consistently.)

15) The alarm rope red herring was clever.

16) Giving back keys to people for honor points was well-implemented, and while a warning would have been nice, taking back coins from the tailor was a nice touch.

17) Finally, my favorite scene. For the entire game, we've been told that Taliesin is uncanny. We've been told all about the connected-to-the-fae thing, and he's got musical talent. We've been told a lot. Anyway, wandering around, the player might encounter him sitting on the ground, thrumming a lute, while the Pooka dances. It's not even all that thoroughly implemented.

That's it; there's no obvious narrative purpose for this scene. However, there's a subtle one. First, it shows us Taliesin hanging out with the Fair Folk before he drops his deus ex machina secret passage solution in the endgame, making it more plausible. More importantly, though, like the scene where the magician's apprentice teleports away from the scornful townsperson, this segment tells us more than any straight dialogue possibly could.

Guest

  • Guest
Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #65 on: 22 Jul 2007, 19:18 »
Crash

Spoiler: ShowHide
after freeing blossom, the changeling kid, when I went back and entered the ship the game closed.


Sorry, didn't write down the error message. Just letting you know.

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #66 on: 22 Jul 2007, 20:50 »
Our first review!
It was an entertaining read, Wellington.

Btw,
Spoiler: ShowHide
the alarm rope is not a red herring, but it's involved in a puzzle to obtain that most-used and abused adventure game inventory item of all times.
Also, the barghest is not always a problem; sometimes it can be used as a solution too ;)



P.S. Grim Fandango is my favorite adventure game of all times.

Vel -
Spoiler: ShowHide
Nadiavam se da ti haresa
« Last Edit: 22 Jul 2007, 21:00 by Meerbat »

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #67 on: 22 Jul 2007, 21:24 »
a bug that wasn't fixed in 1.1:
[hide]In the part where Maeldun's girlfriend goes to the monastery to read books, if you don't go and see her leave the monastery but go directly to the camp and walk toward her place, the game locks up.

P S

  • Guest
Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #68 on: 22 Jul 2007, 23:53 »
Just finished - this game totally rocks!

I second Wellington's comments - the feeling of immersion in this game is awesome!

Thanks so much for making it!

Inkoddi

  • LET ME OUT
Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #69 on: 23 Jul 2007, 01:06 »
I found a few oddities. Does the king use dwarves as nightly guards, and doesn't that tree look quite alike a rock?
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v177/Inkoddi/shrunkguard.png

paolo

  • This City at Night Demo - while stocks last!
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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #70 on: 23 Jul 2007, 13:59 »
This might already have been mentioned (I think I remember seeing something similar reported somewhere) and might even have been fixed by now:

Spoiler: ShowHide
When you get into Theirna na Oge, if you look at the green roots to thel left of the door, the name of this object is omitted from the text that is displayed. For example, you might get "You examine the , but see nothing special." or "It is a perfectly ordinary ."

The same thing happens with the rabbit.


« Last Edit: 23 Jul 2007, 14:12 by paolo »
url=http://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/site/games/game/2036/]This City at Night - Demo[/url]

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #71 on: 23 Jul 2007, 17:36 »
I found a bug with the new release of the game:

Spoiler: ShowHide
I can't pick up the wounded bird. I'm in chapter IV. I never had trouble to pick it.

Anyway, the game is a real masterpiece. It is a real pleasure to play it again and again to find every honour and wisdom point! Two thumbs up guys!

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #72 on: 24 Jul 2007, 02:42 »
Excellent game!
I played it several times to increase the score and discover new things with every turn. Totally captures me...

In version 1.1 I found another bug (I think it was not intended as a side quest).  Day one, in the castle, before dinner
Spoiler: ShowHide

after I found the scepter, I went into the guest room. When I just walked through the door, I found myself in the cave with the fairy quest. I could solve the quest and was transported to the fairy land. When I left from there, I was in day 3 or so. I found no way back to day 1


Rui 'Trovatore' Pires

  • Lunge da lei per me non v'ha diletto!
    • I can help with AGS tutoring
    • I can help with play testing
    • I can help with proof reading
    • I can help with scripting
    • I can help with story design
    • I can help with translating
    • I can help with voice acting
Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #73 on: 24 Jul 2007, 12:00 »
I had pretty much the same bug as sthomannch. I was playing with the alarum bell, wanting to ring it, go in the guest room and see if anything happened.

Spoiler: ShowHide
I did get the "Well, well, what have we here?" cutscene, as I knew I would - I'd gotten as far as Chapter 3 on v1.0 before I decided to install the newest version and start from scratch.


When nothing appeared to, I left the room and found myself in exactly the situation sthomannch describes. Since it appeared to be a HUGE spoiler of a situation (unlike stomachache, I had not gotten that far), I quit at once. I hope you can fix this one as well.
Reach for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.

Kneel. Now.

Never throw chicken at a Leprechaun.

Vel

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #74 on: 24 Jul 2007, 15:05 »
I *thought* that Vladislav fellow from the credits sounded Bulgarian! Glad to see another Bulgarian adventure gamer out there, and, yes, I am immensely enjoying it!

Radiant

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    •  
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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #75 on: 24 Jul 2007, 18:39 »
Okay, that faerie land bug is just weird. I'll look into that and post a v1.2. You can avoid it very easily, as you have no need whatsoever to enter your guest room after you got the scepter.

Nostradamus

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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #76 on: 24 Jul 2007, 20:17 »
Nice game. Looks and feels very proffesional. It must be played in 640x480 though, it looks much better than in 320x200. In 320x200 everything looks weird and out of focus and text is too big. Looks much better in 640x480. The text is still too big even with this resolution though, smaller text would be more comfortable to read especially since the dialogues are really lengthy. The use of music to create atmosphere in situations and places in the game is very good.
Unfortunately I have come across a bug - beginning of chapter 3, when talking to the bard about the stone with a hole the game crashed for no apparent reason. Though I have managed to load a save game and pass the dialogue after a couple of tryes. More unfortunately, I only now know there is a version 1.1 but I don't know if this bug is fixed or not. Anyway I don't want to start over the game to play a fixed version so I hope the game is finishable with version 1.0.. Is it?
« Last Edit: 25 Jul 2007, 08:35 by Nostradamus »



Rui 'Trovatore' Pires

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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #77 on: 24 Jul 2007, 23:07 »
Quote
You can avoid it very easily, as you have no need whatsoever to enter your guest room after you got the scepter.

Ah, but I didn't have it when it happened to me. I was just fooling around with the rope.
Reach for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.

Kneel. Now.

Never throw chicken at a Leprechaun.

Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #78 on: 25 Jul 2007, 05:35 »
May have found a walking dead. 
Spoiler: ShowHide
If you return the comb to the changeling after uniting him with his counterpart, there is no readily apparent way to retrieve it from him.


Edit: Oh, nevermind.  You guys really did think of everything.  Haha.
« Last Edit: 25 Jul 2007, 05:39 by Lyaer »

paolo

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Re: A Tale Of Two Kingdoms
« Reply #79 on: 25 Jul 2007, 13:39 »
Three more rabbit bugs, alas:

Spoiler: ShowHide

After speaking to the druid, I hop back north to the screen with the bridge in. Two bugs happen from here:

1. If I try to cross the bridge northwards (not that I need to at the moment), the following message appears "The fox seems loathe to cross the bridge with its many human smells, and runs off in search for less elusive prey". There is no fox in sight.

2. Far worse than this, after closing the message, the scene advances one frame and the message appears again, getting stuck in an infinite loop.

3. I hop over to the faery ring (where the entrance to Thierna na Oge is) and go round it any number of times withershins, but nothing happens.

Edit: Ah, I see - I need to jump around in circles *in* the faery ring, not just loop around it (and the stones outside it). All OK now.


Regarding the bug reported by someone else,
Spoiler: ShowHide
namely that you can talk to the guard outside the castle as a rabbit, I don't think this is a bug. Didn't the guards see you get transformed into a rabbit? Even if they had already left, perhaps the guard at the door saw you being transformed. However, being able to ask to see Rhiannon and go back into the castle certainly does look like a bug.

« Last Edit: 25 Jul 2007, 13:50 by paolo »
url=http://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/site/games/game/2036/]This City at Night - Demo[/url]