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 Lucid Awakening

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Posts : 165
Join date : 2009-04-22

PostSubject: Lucid Awakening   Thu May 07, 2009 10:23 am

RM version: XP


Pros: Solid characters, no useless characters, interesting story, nice use of custom message system

Cons: Story is rushed at points and could be developed more, battles are too easy, magic is unbalanced, status-effect spells hardly ever work

(c/p from email)

It's called Lucid Awakening, and it's a decent little game. It's supposed to be about 8-10 hours of gameplay; it took me more like 15-16. The reason I want you to at least look at this one is because it uses the Dubealex CMS AMS script, and does some nice things with it, I think. And there's a nice translucent menu effect. It uses a world map reasonably well, and the world map graphics are apparently original (the rest of the graphics are RTP).

If you take the time to play through it (which I would recommend; it's not a stellar game, but it's an interesting story and the gameplay is more or less satisfying), it demonstrates some things that I'd like to avoid: Battles are, by and large, very easy and not well balanced, despite what the author says in his game thread. Negative status-effecting spells are all but useless (unless they're used by the monsters against your party), and totally ineffective in boss battles, which is when you most want to use them (this is a common fault of this sort of rpg, even the professionally made ones, and I'm not sure yet how to circumvent it). The difference between different damage-dealing magic spells is moot; all spells are apparently equally effective against all monsters, and magic progression is weird, in that you're still using the lowest level spells halfway through the game, and you really don't need the highest level spells until the last section. Basically, you get spells long before you need them (which is arguably better than not getting them until long after you need them, and yes, I've played games that did this). Also, magic is immensely over-powered compared to physical attacks. IMO, magic spells should do about the same damage, or just a little more, as physical attacks (by the physical combat characters, of course) at the level you pick up the spell, i.e., when you get the second level fire spell, it should, against the average enemy, be doing close to the same damage physically oriented characters are making at that level, and more against monsters that are weak against fire.

One of the things the game does well, which is both good and bad, is that there are no useless characters. All the physically-oriented characters are approximately equally effective, though some of their skills are relatively useless. The only bad part of this is that it's difficult to decide who to keep in your party, as they quickly become useless when they're not leveled up. I ended up rotating them, so all but the main character were within a few levels of each other. The only drawback with the characters is that some very useful skills were split among a couple of characters, so you almost always had to be without some of those skills. Buffing skills, for example, were split between the main character and one other. Also, two characters were healers, but only one had multi-healing spells, and only the other had status-healing spells.

Anyway, after all this typing, what it comes down to is that this game does some things well, and some things not so well, and I think we can learn from both.
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