Please consider registering
guest

sp_LogInOut Log In sp_Registration Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —




— Match —





— Forum Options —





Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

sp_Feed Topic RSS sp_TopicIcon
Thirty Flights of Loving (spoilers for the unplayed)
Jakkar
Member
Members
January 26, 2013 - 1:45 pm
Member Since: February 11, 2011
Forum Posts: 168
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Critically lauded by respectable journalists and reviewers, a product of Brendon Chung - creator of Gravity Bone (something I found colourfully clever, visually amusing), and Atom Zombie Smasher (to which I've given a over twenty hours, or so Steam tells me - remarkable for such a simple game to be so entertaining)...

... Utterly underwhelming. It was Gravity Bone again, with less charm and what felt like greater linearity. An impression conveyed, I'd guess, by the sense of haste invoked by the constant time-jumps and the 'escape' theme of the latter half of the game.

Ultimately I felt I'd spent money upon a five minute youtube video, for all the 'game' or for that matter 'interactivity' I found within it. The art, meanwhile, had - if anything - weakened since his earlier efforts, and the few semi-coherent references to his past games seemed to be comprised of art ripped directly from those projects rather than new content.

Playing through the developer's commentary afterwards afforded me a more rewarding experience than the game itself - reading Chung's thoughts, reminiscences, lucky breaks and regrets both illuminated the reasons for the game's failure in my eyes (his borderline-obsession with 'readability' of level design and avoiding any dialogue or explanation of features - while forgetting to implement content worth reaching or learning about) and quietly intrigued me - he's a friendly, open and honest man, I have up until this point enjoyed his work, other than the rather slow 'Flotilla' space tactics game.

The inclusion of Gravity Bone was a nice touch, or would have been if it didn't crash the engine the moment I click to begin it.

Impressions stated, my question for the venerable Tap crew is - what did I miss?

And secondly; what did you get out of it?

 - a most nonplussed gamer.

Avatar
Yapette
Tangentistan
Moderator
Staff

Members
January 29, 2013 - 4:06 pm
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 836
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Whatever you missed, I did too. From minute one I thought that I must be playing something other than what the reviewers did. wtf? Hated every second, only redeeming feature (for me) is the "game" was short.

My dislike was so deep that I had no interest in trying the included Gravity Bone.

 

Made me check the expiration date of my Gamer Card. sigh

 

 

Avatar
Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
Admin
January 29, 2013 - 5:49 pm
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 3309
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

How intriguing. I almost bought this when it was on sale a while back, but chided myself that I already have enough games I don't play and plenty of things I want to do but never feel like. Now with these two opinions, plus the others on the opposite side, I really am quite curious.

I know it's short. How short are we talking here? Hours? Minutes? Setting aside that you guys disliked it, what's a reasonable price to pay?

Am I a Yapkar or an AJ? She listed it among her games of the year. I have to be one or the other. Which is it? I don't know!

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

Avatar
Yapette
Tangentistan
Moderator
Staff

Members
January 29, 2013 - 7:07 pm
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 836
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I play games slowly & it maybe took all of 15 min. (is that a spoiler? rolleyes)

As for what you should pay? Anything less than full price ($5) since for me, it's worth = 0. But as a scientific, fact-finding effort*? Maybe it's worth full price to you. smile

 

* Am I a Yapkar or an AJ. Sort of like Myers-Briggs only with less practical application.

 

 

AJLange
Moderator
Staff
March 20, 2013 - 12:41 pm
Member Since: May 2, 2011
Forum Posts: 200
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I liked this game a lot, and I tried to mention why in my article. But to clarify, I chose it for GOTY status partially because I thought it was a good example of a trend in 2012 indie games, the "first person walker." Of all the FPWs released, and there were a LOT, this was my favorite because it cut to the quick and was fast-paced (contrast: Dear Esther, which I personally didn't care for - contrast: Proteus, which I tried recently and was similarly not too taken by, very sorry to say). 

My other favorite of these sorts of games was the Stanley Parable, which is of course free.

I don't think that Thirty Flights would've been much of a bargain without the addition of Gravity Bone, but since I got two games I felt like I got my money's worth out of the entry cost.

Jakkar
Member
Members
March 20, 2013 - 2:35 pm
Member Since: February 11, 2011
Forum Posts: 168
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Thanks for the late reply, Amanda - it woke up the subscription, I forgot I had made this post x.x

I'm glad I'm not alone, Yap - although surprised to find someone with outright dislike. I had that emotional reaction and I smacked myself in the face with the journalism-stick, hoping to go neutral and learn something from it, despite my initial impulse to lambaste the game.

I believe that the flaw is as much in me as in the game - in my expectations. Amanda sought out FPW games, passive experiences without mandatory combat or indepth puzzle interaction, and 30FL is undeniably such a production. I expected... Only something highly entertaining. Having played Gravity Bone I was expecting interactivity, minor exploration, and a quirkily funny work of art, if anything. To get even less than that simply cut too deep.

30FL truly is a film in which you hold down W/▲ to move the narrative forward and angle the camera toward nearby cats/alcohol bottles.

As a short film, it's... Confusing, intriguing, although ultimately has no purpose or message in its simple plot once you've deciphered the nonlinear narrative. I crave meaning, purpose, challenge, intellectual meat on the intellectual bone, gravitational or otherwise - I want games that leave a mark on me. And 30FL made no attempt to.

I find that almost offensive, perhaps due to my frustrated ambitions to design games and my tastes for true indepth interactivity and player-expression through freedom of choice.

Steerpike: As a journalist I imagine you feel obligated, to a greater or lesser degree, to experience the critically successful and the popular (and for that matter the complete opposite - I know I do)... And you may, in a quiet mood, find something to appreciate in 30FL. But I do not believe Chung should ever have charged money for such a short, simplistic and uninteractive project. I couldn't consider it worth more than a dollar, for its brevity and total absence of replayability.

I'll repeat a chunk of my original post;

Ultimately I felt I’d spent money upon a five minute youtube video, for all the ‘game’ or for that matter ‘interactivity’ I found within it.

I stand by that - it felt like watching a short film in my browser, one I had been led to believe was incredible and persuaded to spent money on. Subjectively, it was also very boring.

Expectations are a bitch.

 -Jack

Avatar
Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
Admin
March 22, 2013 - 8:50 am
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 3309
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I do feel that sensation, AJ, and I do try to follow up on it most of the time. It seems like an appropriate responsibility to have. In fairness, that sense of responsibility has led me right many times - Shadow of the Colossus to Proteus, and practically anything Harbour Master discusses on Electron Dance. In the deluge it's really nice to have resources that tell you what's potentially important so you don't have to waste your time combing through it all.

I'd like to be part of this discussion, since it's all intrigued me more... and despite reading all the posts, I'm no closer to knowing what 30FL really is or what I'd think of it. Come a good sale I'll invest a few bucks. I've spend more money on worse decisions!

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

Jakkar
Member
Members
March 22, 2013 - 4:07 pm
Member Since: February 11, 2011
Forum Posts: 168
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Steerpike said
I do feel that sensation, AJ, and I do try to follow up on it most of the time. It seems like an appropriate responsibility to have.

 

Was this a reply to my post, or Amanda's? I couldn't find the context, if the latter. However I just woke up at 19.30 with the inside of my mouth feeling like the outside of a dead cat so I should not, perhaps, be questioning the sense of other people's posts...

Regardless, I've sent you a copy of 30FL for the sake of discussion. I may dislike it but I absolutely loved Atom Zombie Smasher, so there's no regret at throwing another little splash of cash at 'em during the Indie sale.

And oh dear, Steer - look! - AntiChamber is 50% off too...! D:

Now that's a temptation...

 

AJLange
Moderator
Staff
March 22, 2013 - 4:52 pm
Member Since: May 2, 2011
Forum Posts: 200
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Sorry and you're welcome for the necro on the thread! ;)

Avatar
Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
Admin
March 22, 2013 - 10:08 pm
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 3309
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Thank you Jakkar! What a nice thing to come home to after 16 hours at the office. I look forward to it, and will report my findings presently. Now I owe you something!

Ooo, Antichamber. I might have to take the plunge. I've been waiting for a sale.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

Avatar
Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
Admin
March 24, 2013 - 12:19 pm
Member Since: April 10, 2009
Forum Posts: 3309
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

OKAY! Thanks to Vile Swelter Jakkar's generosity I am now able to render my opinion (and BTW, that line in my earlier response was indeed in reference to your post not AJ's; your avatar has gone missing and my eyes slid right past the transition. Apologies).

So! Loving and the Thirty Flights thereof.

I decided to go in blind, then reread this thread and Amanda's remarks in her GOTY post.

Ultimately my takeaway was this: nonlinear narration can be a great thing, and Thirty Flights of Loving has some really interesting narrative ideas and touches. Unfortunately it felt rushed to me, unable to clearly say everything it could have. It was a short story that might have been better as a novella.

I didn't hate it, but it felt more like a demo of something larger. I wanted more context with which to draw my own conclusions and create my own story for the three main characters; instead I got so little that any decisions I made on my own felt like unfair logic jumps.

The style has a lot of potential, and the game is confidently done. I'd like to see a more mainstream psychological game use those sudden jumps in time and location, for example. It has some lovely moments - the wedding guests all floating up into the air (which I gather started out as a code error).

But for money you need more. Dear Esther, similarly experimental, was at least long enough and had sufficient production values to justify a price tag. Thirty Flights of Loving, in many ways, had more unique ideas, but didn't take enough time to explore them.

This is a game I'd probably buy if Blendo announced plans to make a fuller version - say a 2-4 hour experience. I'm looking forward to the commentary and to Gravity Bone, and I'm glad I played this, but I don't see it as revolutionary in interactive story, despite agreeing with Graham Smith's remark that it tells a better story in 13 minutes than most games do in 13 hours. Unfortunately that's a backhanded compliment, since it really needed about 35 minutes to tell its story. Saying too much in too little time can be as bad as saying too little in too much.

 

Thank you kindly, Jakkar - Mr. Rottcodd will dust a carving for you.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

Forum Timezone: America/Detroit

Most Users Ever Online: 194

Currently Online:
7 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

Spike: 1187

Pokey: 894

Jarrod: 607

Finkbug: 468

Armand: 318

kaythomas: 307

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 9

Members: 14378

Moderators: 18

Admins: 6

Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 4

Topics: 813

Posts: 18536

Newest Members:

hydyasoni020, hydyasoni02, Matildaly, AprilOls26, AprilOls, Johnnydepp420

Moderators: Jen: 631, Orb: 0, Scout: 1205, Toger: 1488, Yapette: 836, Dobralov: 17, xtal: 1683, Meho: 82, Tap-Repeatedly: 0, geggis: 1435, Lewis B: 214, Mat: 245, AJLange: 200, Dix: 483, Cheeta: 0, LewisB: 0, Amy Louise: 12, l0vetemper: 3

Administrators: admin: 2, MrLipid: 31, Steerpike: 3309, Helmut: 795, Synonamess Botch: 1125, heddhunter: 27