ACSC06 - Immortal Prey Prologue - Eye Of The Beholder
(Updated on 08/16/06
Enter a fantasy world of intrigue and peril...
This cutscene is a prologue and introduction to the upcoming campaign, "Immortal Prey", soon to be released at www.dgdn.net and here in the Blacksmith. Estimated release: fall-winter 2006!
Take care and enjoy!
Crasher ~ DGDN.net 2002 - 2006
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'Immortal Prey Prologue - Eye Of The Beholder' is a cutscene that sets the stage for the full campaign, Immortal Prey. It has also been entered into the current AoKH Cutscene Competition.
Playability: - The playability of this cutscene is good. The designer has gone with a storybook style which, goes someway to helping keep the viewer intrigued. The game follows the plan of an assassination with four characters and a fifth in third person. There are many positive elements which all help to keep your attention.
Balance: - The balance is rated in accordance with the reviewing tutorial, where it scores highest.
Creativity: - There are quite a few creative elements in this prologue, with storms, trap doors, assasinations and excellent use of sound files. Good use of creativity with the use of sound, included throwing pebbles through the slit of a tower, opening a gate, opening a trap door and entering and exiting buildings. The creativity I feel is the strongest part of this cutscene.
Map Design: - The map design is very beautiful. There are a lot of different elements used throughout including, shoreless water with & without fish, rain and very picturesque design. There isn't too much varying of climate but what is revealed include lush forests, a well designed city, Novartis, and a swamp alongside a particularly appealing river. Good use of previously hidden units and an attractive bitmap also help map design score high.
Story/Instructions: - A good introduction screen, with a pikeman hung from a tree and instruction screen instructing the user on in-game settings help set the scene. The creator has tried to as briefly mentioned earlier, tell the story from a fifth character in third person. This has both a good and bad side, it helps keep the viewer more interested however, it also makes following the story-line a lot harder. It's fair to say there is a lot of drama and plot twists, which combined gave me a bit of trouble keeping track. The idea worked well at first, but it doesn't define other characters, whom is Lord Govela?
There are other smaller problems that I also picked up on. There are a lot of spelling mistakes throughout, I think part of the reason maybe hurrying to make the deadline and not having a chance to fully proof read the in-game instructions. Throughout the game there is a reasonable use of music, the storm music during the introduction text was good, however I felt there wasn't enough variation on the music after this which was played out over the cut-scene for a good twenty minutes.
Overall: - Immortal Prey looks set to be an impressive campaign when it is released. If the author can help give more background and introduce new characters a little more then I can easily seeing it getting top marks. The use of a third person view for the story is interesting, but only partially succeeds, with time I feel that issue could easily be refined and help the player immerse themselves in the dark fantasy storyline better.
[Edited on 06/30/18 @ 07:12 PM]
The cutscene 'ACSC - Immortal Prey Prologue - Eye Of The Beholder' is a attention-grabbing and well compiled introduction to the soon to be campaign, and also acclaimed as one of the many fine entries to the ~AoK Heaven~ Cutscene competition.
Playability - Although playability isn't ready to be directly rated, it comes across fantastic. The custscene is set up in a diary/story form, and includes many articles of wide intrest like a well thought out introduction, and well defined characters. It is something many would look forward to playing.
Balance - It is a cut-scene.
Creativity - The cutscene is extravagantly original. In addition to a hint of foreshadowing within the instructions page, everything from the quiet introduction to the suspensful active scenes are well put together. Also, the many well used sounds add the sheer outstanding realism of the cutscene.
Map Design - The map isn't fully revealed, but none the less it is very appealing. It includes a clean city accompanied by many other simple yet effective ideas. Also a well designed marsh to top it off; in which the effects that the creator added make everything seem useful and real.
Story / Instructions: - Following an intriging introduction, the plot is slowly unveiled. It is complex due to the narrarator being a character that doesn't clearly establish any meaning until later on in the story. An action scene complete with good teamwork also added to the effectivness of the story. Also, clear steps to prepare for the cutscene were included. After reading through these, one knows he or she has something bright in store. The cutscenes only demerit lies here, as there were characters that weren't properly introduced.
Otherwise, the Immortal prey prologue is inclusive of nearly every needed aspect of a perfect cutscene.
Overall - 'Immortal Prey' appears to take on the role of a professionally made campaign. Using a combination of complex storyline and scenario characteristics, the creator has obtained many high expectations; hopefully they will be fufilled. With reviewing and playtesting, i'm sure the campaign will make a big splash in the AoK:TC scene.
RECOMMENDATION : ~HIGHLY RECOMMENDED~
[Edited on 06/30/18 @ 07:11 PM]
'Eye of the Beholder' is a cut-scene introducing the tale from the much larger upcoming project of 'Immortal Prey'. It is a single scenario running for the better part of twenty-two minutes and captures the betrayal and intrigue of a band of warriors committing a crime to survive. But when the plan to murder goes horribly wrong, one man makes it out alive only to discover betrayal, and perhaps more seriously, a further thread of conspiring lords, mystery and treachery.
PLAYABILITY: Even after all these many months since 'Eye of the Beholder's' release I can still watch this cut-scene and feel moved, intrigued, but mostly, still feel fulfilled. This short, introductory story is simply so moving, so wondrous, and so beautiful, complimented powerfully by atmospheric music and sounds. It not only has plenty of replay value, but is damn right inspiring as well. As if the story wasn't interesting enough, the characters and their fate in the tale were equally as impacting as well. The characters felt real, and played perfectly within their roles in the story. Each unit seemingly interacted with the scenes around them, adding to a genuine sense of realism and the gloomy music added to an atmosphere that is dark, mysterious and beautiful alike. As such I was mesmerised in this cut-scene from start to finish, and from start to finish I followed a story that I want to continue. 5
BALANCE: According to review guidelines, balance is in a scenario rated according to the player's experience with his struggle to survive. The player is also expected to at least understand the author's intentions with balance. Such is in the case of a cut-scene where the author's intentions are not for the player a struggle to survive, but for the player to sit back and watch as the story unfolds. Guidelines at least here justify that full marks are awarded, not deducted, for its non-playable merit. 5
CREATIVITY: Creativity in this cut-scene was exemplary. I spotted excellent characterisation, story telling and an overall broad map design, roaring with many creative elements such as a marsh, a mountainside and a city. I liked the music and sounds, the light stretching from a house window, pebbles thrown into the slits of a tower window and a murder in the night, a plan gone wrong, and its mystery unraveling right before your eyes. Other more specific things were in particular the way the story was told from an unknown character through his journal entries, giving the sense of a narrator, and the lightning and thunder flashing over the peaks of a mountain with rain. 5
MAP DESIGN: One word: Gorgeous. Crasher has developed his own unique style of designing, and I must say it not only works beautifully, but effectively as well. The open plains of grass and trees give a genuine sense of nature at its most beautiful, and the rain sound effects really impel on this, complimenting the look and feel of the design ever more. Not only this but the use of player colours implores on the overall effect as well. Places in particular to mention were the town of Novartis, wondrous with a mansion, houses and cathedral, and a marsh, realistic and a sight to behold. There were river crossings, a small village falling under the fierce, hail of rain, and forest roads - all designed to such perfection that you almost feel the rain sputtering across your face, the aroma of it from the dirt pushing through your nostrils under a cool breeze, and the cold of a crime in the night gone wrong. 5
STORY/ INSTRUCTIONS: The story was only relatively brief in structure, but nonetheless full of intrigue and wonder. I was kept in full suspense, and what little disappointment was met was only when the cut-scene ended. If anything the story's only flaw was that it was a prologue, an unfinished tale, the actual focus of the story still yet to be told of which a deduction of one point is necessary. However the cut-scene still comes with a wonderful bitmap, and good hints, if only a little too unpolished. Words look ugly in capitals, and many, many spelling mistakes were discovered by which the author being English-speaking could easily have fixed, even if in an update. 4
CONCLUDING: As an introductory scenario to 'Immortal Prey', I must say that if this was the quality of one 'meagre' cut-scene, I can only wonder what I will be seeing in the coming campaign. 'Eye of the Beholder' is without doubt an artistic achievement, which excels in almost every field. I honestly cannot wait an ounce longer for the long-overdue sequel. Please, Crasher, finish it. Don't leave us waiting any longer, but most of all, don't leave us with another unfinished project for us to sadden at the sight of in the Blacksmith.
In a sentence - Intriguing and mysterious.
In closing - A must download!
[Edited on 06/30/18 @ 07:10 PM]