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GRAGH

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superpig

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The guys got me Fahrenheit on Xbox as a leaving present (a.k.a. 'Indigo Prophecy') which was very nice of them. Been playing it this morning.

I thought it was going well, but... AAARGH! INCREDIBLY FRUSTRATING GAME!

I did the bit at the beginning in the diner reasonably well - didn't clean up as well as I might have liked, but got out without drawing attention to myself. Did the cop bit and set up a reasonable number of leads. So now I'm back in Lucas's apartment, there's a cop threatening to kick my door down if I don't open it, and I'd do that but I... CAN'T FIND MY FUCKING KEYS?! What the fuck kind of design decision is that? Hunting for your keys isn't fun in real life, so why would it be fun in a game? I never lose my keys - they're always either in my trouser pocket or on my desk - so they've set up another thing that prevents me identifying with the character. Now sure, I'm still mostly naked so I don't expect to have the keys on me, but Lucas doesn't even say something helpful like "My keys are probably under the couch" or something.

What's more is that I tried to deal with my arms being covered in blood by taking a shower (after finding the bathroom, which took a while). He gets in, he showers, he gets out. Says nothing. So I assume I've washed the blood off... try to look in the mirror, but they don't have an interaction for that, so he opens the cabinet instead. The dead guy showing up when you close it was nice, but they'd better not do that too often - cost me something like 20 mental points and I had no way of predicting that it would happen, which makes me feel cheated.

The conversation system is very constrained by the small amount of space in which the options are displayed. I've had a number of places where I'm not sure what a particular conversation option means, or where it means something other than what I thought I was asking about. If they'd gone with a more traditional adventure game system for the dialogue, showing the first line you're going to say or something like that, it might have worked better - no indication of tone or inflexion (which is kinda important when you're trying to interrogate a witness) but it'd be better than what is there. I assume they aimed to keep the main 'movie screen' free from interface overlays at all times which is why they're constrained so badly, but it suffers as a result.

I've noticed some interesting teleportation effects - using a car from one side plays a cutscene where the character actually gets in on the other side. Now, fair enough that they're not going to create cutscenes for every possible angle of approach, but this is a solved problem - either don't expose the option in places where the cutscene wouldn't fit (not so good) or have the character walk to the correct place (better). There was also a moment in the diner when I had Tyler talk to the two cops, then walked the detective girl whose name I don't remember over to them and talked as well - and Tyler had mysteriously disappeared during the conversation cutscene. Hmm.
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heh, my mate also got it for the XBox and had trouble finding his keys... funny thing is, I found them by accident as I wandered around the apartment long before the cop showed up and picked them in a kind 'ooo keys, these might be usefull' moment [grin]

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I've started over, and now I'm stuck in the diner as I can't find the murder weapon (I hid it the first time around). Seems like they won't let me leave until I've found it.

I'm becoming increasingly disappointed with the lack of interactivity in the game - why is it that Tyler can flush the toilets, but Carla can't? Why can't they examine the window, unless Tyler does it from outside?

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