Joined: Jun 2009
RE: Probably not buying this one. :(
(09-06-2010 12:14 AM)Splinterheart Wrote: I played all the Penumbra series games and enjoyed them very much, so I was naturally looking forward to Amnesia: The Dark Descent. I just finished playing the demo and if that's what the full game is going to be like (and I'm sure it will be) then I probably won't be adding it to my game collection.
The lighting and level designs are great and the physics even more so... the mood is good, scary yet inviting, but the whole thing with your "sanity"... the vision being contorted uncontrollably and all that.... is actually more annoying rather than immersive. I feel like I'm being forced to feel what my character is feeling instead of allowing MY own REAL reactions and feelings to come through! It's like the game is dictating what I should feel!
There are several moments when the character gasps and his breath trembles, the FOV stretches and all that, and I guess (?) I'm supposed to be witnessing some "unsettling" moment, but there's nothing happening for me to actually see. Very confusing! Did I miss it? Where was I supposed to be looking? Hmm, I think I'm supposed to be scared now, but I'm not. *sigh*
There was one spot right at the start where a door blows open from the wind... and my character practically wets his pants, but I was like, "Uhh, yeah, okay. Whatever. Classic, but cheap gag." If he would have just gasped quickly, that would have been good enough for that particular moment... but the vision distorts way out of whack and tilts to one side as if he just had a stroke.
I hate the fact that the darkness causes you to lose sanity and, for me, it doesn't work as a good game mechanic. Maybe it would work, I guess, if it didn't happen so quickly. One minute, my character is fine, but then the next minute (literally), he's having a complete mental meltdown. Speaking of which, the "teeth grinding" was about to give me a meltdown in the real world and is almost reason enough not to buy the game. If the game induces enough stress and fright to make the player grind their teeth, then let THEM hear the grinding of THEIR teeth. I don't need (or want) to hear someone else's teeth grinding. All I heard was... distraction... distraction... distraction....
Seriously, and this isn't meant to be disrespectful to what Amnesia is trying to do, but I got a bigger emotional and psychological reaction from Doom 3 the first time I played it. Major anxiety... could only play for about 45 minutes at a time before I had to get up and turn on the lights. And for anyone who's played Thief 3... the Shalebridge Cradle mission... yeah, you know what I'm talkin' about.
Anyway, back to losing sanity... Amnesia: TDD doesn't give you any time to wait in the shadows for enemies... or time for much else either. You have to find or create light to "survive", but that only causes you to be seen by the enemies (which makes you lose sanity even faster?), so it's a damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don't sort of situation that lowers the fun factor several notches. And the lamp oil... OMFG, how FAST does a lamp burn oil? (And I thought the battery drain in Penumbra was ridiculous.) Again, this just makes the whole "the darkness can kill you" idea even less fun.
It's like the game is constantly making me HURRY to solve puzzles and "make progress". (There's even an onscreen hint that says as much!) I like to take my time with this sort of thing... explore... creep... think. But Amnesia doesn't allow it. It's like there's a pushy, nagging hand at my shoulder that constantly suggests, "Hurry, or you'll DIE! Hurry hurry! Move it! No time to look at things, no time to take in the environment... GO! NOW!"
I'm not trying to say that the game is going to suck, or that the demo does... it just didn't work for me. I was expecting something very different, I guess. Again, I liked the Penumbra games a lot... very unique and immersive, and I loved the fact that you didn't even need to have a weapon to get through it. I thought Amnesia would be more like that but in a different time/place with a new story and characters. I had really been looking forward to this for the past few months, but now.... well, I'm not anymore. At the least, I'll say "Thanks" to the developer for releasing a demo so I can find out these sort of things before making a purchase.
If Amnesia: TDD was a little less pushy, a little less "in your face" with the character's over-the-top emotional dictation, and a little more forgiving with the rules, then it might be fun.
Anyway, my two cents. Hope the rest of you like it better than I did!
- S -
Buy the game, remove all breathing, gasping sounds, etc.
Remove all calls to StartPlayerLookAt in the map scripts.
And maybe add timers that keeps your sanity at 100%?