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A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin #959334
05/29/14 06:41 PM
05/29/14 06:41 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 40,644
southeast USA
Jenny100 Offline OP
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First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin



What have we here?


There is a new player in the modern world of game publishing: crowd-funding. A fantastic idea that allows game enthusiasts to pledge their support up front for the development of games that they want to see made, and that allows them to support that development directly by handing over their cash if the project's funding target is met. This model has led to a number of quality games being developed that were previously ignored by the traditional publisher-controlled model of production - the model that seems to have resulted in the modern glut of sequels and spin-offs.

Of course, this new approach doesn't actually guarantee that the resulting game is exactly what you originally expected it to be, nor does it enforce any particular quality in the product (though this has not yet been tested against any law on the subject, to the best of my knowledge).

So, on the one hand, we have successful projects such as Jane Jensen's Moebius Empire Rising getting funded, and resulting in a high quality game (see my earlier review) but we also have more frustrating results as in Quest for Infamy.

Quest for Infamy is described as a classic point and click adventure game, in which you assume the identity of a reprobate named Roehm, who's trying to escape his shady past in the town of Volksville.




Notes from a short journey


Alarm bells started ringing when I realised that the game isn't a point and click adventure at all, it's an RPG (role-playing game), with three classes. Not that I would normally baulk at playing an RPG, it's just that when a game is as thoroughly mis-labelled like this, I do wonder what to expect. Anyway, you can play the game as a rogue, as a sorcerer, or as a fighter (though they call it a 'brigand', which in my dictionary is pretty much synonymous with 'rogue', but there you go).

As it happens, you don't immediately decide which path to take until about half an hour into the game. But those paths basically affect the skills you have available in combat. I'm not sure what else they affect because of what happened five hours in... when the game was automatically updated and invalidated all of my saves.

Ok, so what else could I discover in five hours of the game? The graphics are hand-drawn, and pretty detailed for all that. The style is very reminiscent of the games of the late 1990s, but with a better standard of animation. There is a lot of content. The game is clearly large, with many locations in the town of Volksville, and plenty beyond, including an extensive grave-yard, forests, and countryside around the town. The world goes further out towards another city, though I never reached it. The world also contains many people, a good number of whom you can interact with.

The characters that are actually involved in the story all have detailed close-up head-shots for when you're talking with them that are of a significantly greater detail than in the normal view.

Speaking of dialogue, there's a lot of that too. A goodly amount has been fully voiced by a varied cast of vocal performers, but the standard of those performers is not consistent, nor is the quality of the sound recording, though given the indie nature of the production company, this is more forgivable than if it were, say, an Ubisoft game.

The downside to the dialogue and narration is the terribly puerile humour employed, particularly in the narration. An 11 year old boy might be amused by it, but subtle it is not.

A second set of alarm bells went off in my mind when I discovered that this 'adventure' game contains a significant amount of combat. This doesn't chime with the 'classic point and click adventure game' label the developers and publishers use. What I found particularly frustrating about the combat is that it's quite hard to win in the early stages (though that's all I really have to go on), and not only that, random bad guys show up without warning when you walk onto a screen. So much so that it is almost worth saving your game just before you walk off the side of a screen, every time!

Combat is turn-based; i.e. you take turns with your opponent to attack or defend or cast a spell (if you have spells). I only ever saw combat with one opponent at a time, so I don't know if there are ever occasions when you have to fight more than one at a time.

And finally, speaking of 'walking off the side of the screen' ... that's usually how you find the exits. Many of the exits are not simple clickable hot-spots - you have to use the cursor keys to move in the direction of the edge of the screen and hope that there's an exit there. This got so frustrating when I got trapped in the Inn for 15 minutes, before I realised the exit was UNMARKED and UNCLICKABLE at the bottom of the screen.



Jumping to conclusions?


Did I enjoy my early experiences with Quest for Infamy? No I did not.
Will I try to play the rest of the classes? Nope.
But, as ever with just about every game, your mileage may vary.

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959404
05/30/14 07:00 AM
05/30/14 07:00 AM
Joined: Dec 1999
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Thanks gremlin!

wave Jenny!

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959412
05/30/14 08:14 AM
05/30/14 08:14 AM
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Tell me something.
You say the game automatically updated and invalidated your saves, gremlin.
Were you playing it through a client?

Was this the demo or a fresh release supplied to reviewers?

You obviously disliked QFI.
Fair enough.
But comparing it to Moebius seems a little strange to me since the games are nothing alike as far as I can tell.

It has been quite a while since I played the demo so my memory is a little vague, but aside from the puerile humor in that taste of QFI (and I agree with you on that) I don't recall QFI being much different from the few old Sierra games I've played.
They were not the most forgiving and you could be jumped by things that offed you rather quickly if you didn't make the right choice fast enough.
As for hotspots, exits or otherwise, I seem to remember being frustrated by them way more than I'd have liked.

At any rate, I think I'll wait and see how the finished game impresses me.
I didn't toss a lot into the KS pot but I'll be getting my copy from GOG when it's released so I think I'll reserve judgment on this one until I've played it.
I may hate it but I doubt one of my complaints will be that it wasn't as good as a game you label high quality though opinions on that are highly mixed.

Gil.


"Best not to think about it. I don't want to fall to bits 'cos of excess existential thought."
Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: traveler] #959416
05/30/14 09:13 AM
05/30/14 09:13 AM
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Thanks, gremlin and Jenny. smile

I really loved Sierra's Quest for Glory series so unless the puerile humor is a sticking point with me, I suspect that I will like this game as well.

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959427
05/30/14 10:24 AM
05/30/14 10:24 AM
Joined: Jan 2004
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Thanks Gremlin and Jenny!

Ana wave


Don't feed the Trolls
Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959432
05/30/14 10:41 AM
05/30/14 10:41 AM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 40,644
southeast USA
Jenny100 Offline OP
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Many thanks to gremlin for suffering through the "humour" to provide us with this First Look. The original Quest for Glory series wasn't marred by that sort of "humour."

Marian, have you looked at "Heroine's Quest?"

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959433
05/30/14 10:44 AM
05/30/14 10:44 AM
Joined: Jul 2000
Posts: 43,157
near Yosemite in California
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Yes, I have looked at Heroine's Quest - I think it's very nicely done. I haven't played it all the way through yet, but I would recommend it to anyone who enjoyed the Quest for Glory games.

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: traveler] #959512
05/30/14 04:42 PM
05/30/14 04:42 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,693
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Originally Posted By: traveler
Tell me something.
You say the game automatically updated and invalidated your saves, gremlin.
Were you playing it through a client?

I was playing the Steam version.

Originally Posted By: traveler
Was this the demo or a fresh release supplied to reviewers?

A review copy, that then appears to have been partially updated to the real thing (the game was released on June 26th).

Originally Posted By: traveler
You obviously disliked QFI.
Fair enough.
But comparing it to Moebius seems a little strange to me since the games are nothing alike as far as I can tell.

I was contrasting the quality of the games, which happen to share a funding model, not the actual games.

Originally Posted By: traveler
It has been quite a while since I played the demo so my memory is a little vague, but aside from the puerile humor in that taste of QFI (and I agree with you on that) I don't recall QFI being much different from the few old Sierra games I've played.
They were not the most forgiving and you could be jumped by things that offed you rather quickly if you didn't make the right choice fast enough.
As for hotspots, exits or otherwise, I seem to remember being frustrated by them way more than I'd have liked.

There are a lot of similarities to the old Sierra style of games. I won't make any further comparison because I've played so few of them due to the inaccessibility of those games to me at the time. (I was a poor teenager, with no income, and no suitable computer to play them on at the time)

Originally Posted By: traveler
I may hate it but I doubt one of my complaints will be that it wasn't as good as a game you label high quality though opinions on that are highly mixed.

A first look (just like a review) is a highly subjective thing, so I reserve my right to be down-right opinionated about a game. As I said, your mileage may vary, and you're absolutely within your rights to disagree with me until the proverbial cows come home! smile

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: gremlin] #959524
05/30/14 05:20 PM
05/30/14 05:20 PM
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"A review copy, that then appears to have been partially updated to the real thing (the game was released on June 26th)."

Lol! Time flies in the Isle of Man.
Around here, it's still May.


"I was contrasting the quality of the games, which happen to share a funding model, not the actual games."

I'm still very confused about what you mean by quality.
The graphics seem to be good enough, the animation better than the old games that inspired them.
The world, you say, is huge and peopled with NPCs you can interact with, though the dialogue is not voiced consistently in your view.
I get it that you don't like AGs tarred with RPG elements, but where does the lack of quality come in?
Are there recent games of this type that have been done better?
I'm not being argumentative or defending a game I haven't played yet; I really don't get what you mean.

Gil.







"Best not to think about it. I don't want to fall to bits 'cos of excess existential thought."
Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: traveler] #959589
05/31/14 12:56 AM
05/31/14 12:56 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 31,636
United Kingdom
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Thanks, gremlin and Jenny100 smile

Right from its Kickstarting outset, and considering its chosen title, this always looked like it would be a Quest for Glory type game to me. So Combat isn't a surprise.
Although the apparent poor attempts at humour very well might be !! slapforehead

And "Adventure" is possibly not the right description for it.
I never considered the old Quest for Glory games to be truly "Adventure" but neither could they be truly called RPGs. So "hybrid" springs to mind laugh

However, I am hoping to enjoy the game as from what I've seen of it so far it DOES seem to be more or less following in the foosteps of the old Sierra Quest for Glory series and, like Marian, I really had fun with those old games thumbsup


Time : The Most Precious Commodity
Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959594
05/31/14 01:10 AM
05/31/14 01:10 AM
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Thanks, gremlin and Jenny wave


I change all my passwords to "incorrect". So whenever I forget, it says, "your password is incorrect".

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: traveler] #959605
05/31/14 03:31 AM
05/31/14 03:31 AM
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Originally Posted By: traveler
"A review copy, that then appears to have been partially updated to the real thing (the game was released on June 26th)."

Lol! Time flies in the Isle of Man.
Around here, it's still May.

Oops ... maybe I just want this week to be over (it being TT week, and all the bedlam that implies: consider 40,000 visitors (most with motorbikes) being added to an island of 80,000 and imagine the impact!).

Originally Posted By: traveler

"I was contrasting the quality of the games, which happen to share a funding model, not the actual games."

I'm still very confused about what you mean by quality.
The graphics seem to be good enough, the animation better than the old games that inspired them.

My impression of "quality" comes down to the complete experience. You get the same with other products - you can tell the difference between a low quality car and a high quality one: in one, the controls are in the right places and give nice tactile feedback, the doors feel solid yet nicely balanced, the steering is responsive and the performance balanced, in the other the controls are tacky or insubstatial, the doors are tinny, the steeing twitchy, the performance lack-lustre and inconsistent. That's the kind of difference in quality I'm talking about.

Quote:
I get it that you don't like AGs tarred with RPG elements, but where does the lack of quality come in?

What I don't like are RPGs that claim to be AGs when they are not. I like RPGs, I like AGs. But if QoI is an AG, then so is Diablo (and II and III), after all, you can play Diablo exclusively with the mouse if you want to.

Quote:
Are there recent games of this type that have been done better?

Yes. In the category of mixed AG/RPG games, I'd put the Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing (heavier on the combat), or Jack Keane 2 The Fire Within (heavier on the adventure). And of course, if you go a bit further back to another game I reviewed for GB, there's Gooka: the Mystery of Janatris, which suffered from the same AG vs RPG "confusion" in the labelling, so Quest for Infamy isn't exactly the first to mess with those labels.

Last edited by gremlin; 06/01/14 04:43 PM. Reason: speeling
Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959923
06/01/14 06:58 PM
06/01/14 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted By: Jenny100

Alarm bells started ringing when I realised that the game isn't a point and click adventure at all, it's an RPG (role-playing game), with three classes. Not that I would normally baulk at playing an RPG, it's just that when a game is as thoroughly mis-labelled like this, I do wonder what to expect.


Hm. Well i can understand why this might be confusing if you're very unfamiliar with the quest for glory series, but i would not call it mis-labeled. These games are very much point&click adventures with lite rpg mechanics. Combats tend to be avoidable and not of very much focus. Still, this is a pretty rare sub-genre style, so its a fair point that new people may be confused about this.

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959984
06/02/14 05:20 AM
06/02/14 05:20 AM
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I can't help but think that the reviewer has misunderstood the intentions of the gamemakers. From what I've seen and heard of this project the label adventure seems appropriate. Also the fact that the game takes a slightly amoral and juvenile or i if you like puerile approach on the quest for glory type of game should not be a surprise if you have follewed it's kickstarter story. That of course doesn't say anything on the subject of quality but should be taken into account for a fair review.

Re: A First Look at Quest for Infamy -- by gremlin [Re: Jenny100] #959989
06/02/14 06:30 AM
06/02/14 06:30 AM
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Thanks for your opinions.

This is a first look.

It is information for gamers gathered from the writer's experience playing part of the game;
- for those that did-did not follow the kickstarter program and for those that will play years from now and didn't know how it came about.
- for those that are not familiar with and also for veterans of the Quest of Infamy series. They will then know what to expect: humor, graphics, voice, etc...
- for those that rely on the blurb describing the game that it is a point and click adventure game. They will then know that they have to do "combat" which are not usual fare for an adventure game.



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