Thursday, July 25, 2013

Review: Mystery City

Now with a cover I whipped up in 20..ish minutes?

The "long awaited" Mystery City review is finally here, after all of that teasing and ~mysterious~ banter, here we are. Before we start, I will not be sugar coating this review, like all of mine, I will not be giving a numerical rating, which you already know. That's about all I have to say as far as regular banter goes, etc.

Mystery City is a sort of follow-up/spin-off of the Mystery game series by the same creator, Christopher Mysteries (the games are a little outdated but they're still fun). Now this time, Ptah70 is back with a brand new game, but he's not alone on this one, his cousin Mario5422 joins the ride to help with development of Mystery City. So, what is a "mystery game", per say? It mainly revolves around the player walking through an expansive map looking for NPCs to talk to, or just scouring the map for interesting secrets, you have to examine the badge descriptions to really get the story though. While they may not appeal to all, I generally enjoy these types of games mainly because they require the creator to make up an interesting story instead of just relying on a ton of flashy visuals (although they help too).

Onto the game itself, entering will bring you into a lobby with a greeter/generic help NPC, a map of the city, some game passes for sale, and some adverts, etc. Before I move on though, there are 18 mysteries in the game in total,  not counting the "finale". Now, there is a paid mystery which is NOT required for the finale access thankfully, only the first 17 are. There is also a "Mystery Guide", which can be found in the game and will pretty much spoil every mystery if you're that lazy. But back on topic, once you actually get into the game you'll be teleported next to a waffle house and "apartmeny" buildng, I'd recommend you head over to the (Wo)Mansmart first and talk to the owner, I'll leave you off there without spoiling anything.

As I'd explained before, the game revolves around talking to different oddly similar characters around the city and seeing what their problems are and finding out what to do next, although it can get confusing at points you can always aimlessly run around the city and go back to that mystery later, although something to note first.. stay away from the seeds, do not go near them, do not talk to them, do not even make eye tcatnoc htiw meht

The building, although basic gives me a good "minimalist" vibe going, yes I know I've said this word a ton of times in the past but it just gets me here. Yes, free models are used but they appear to not be mis-purposed which is always good, the place has a lot of decals that all seem to work and be in order, although lag is an issue even on my computer so I'd recommend toning it down some.

This, is where I feel Mystery City shines best, from the different supernatural forces at work within the city, to the oddly clad troubled citizens. While they don't ooze with character, they do a decent job for what limited time you interact with them. There is kind of a story, which you'll oddly find in a few certain mysteries through cryptic banter and strange figures. While this will likely be expanded upon more in the Sequel you should attempt to pay attention when you come upon these.

Man I must be losing my head, in a nutshell Mystery City is a rare breed of game, no overly done gimmicks, just good old dialogue, teleporters, and a few free models scripts along with some creativity. I simply recommend it just because it's different and you may find some inspiration out of it. So go play it, go on, goooooooooooooooooo

Disclaimer: No I am not going insane, this was just done for fun to add a little bit of incentive to the game to make people want to go check the game out. If you really feel I should make a serious review then here's my thoughts in a few words;

Mystery City is not a perfect game, although it's strengths lie more in the thought put behind the characters and design. If Ptah and Mario could somehow enhance the game with some scripting magic that would be interesting to see what they could do with it, although there's always next time.

Well that's this put down, what would you guys like to see done next? I'm kinda out of ideas besides the generic front page game or rant.