Congrats on your release! I've been pumped to play this since I saw your WiP; great work, guys!
I ran through all the routes (and got all the endings! yay!), so lemme see that feedback sheet (long review up ahead!):
: I only played the first version of the game, so you might've corrected some stuff since then. Correct me if it's in 1.1!)
1. Did you enjoy the game? Any thoughts/comments?
Yeah! Totally enjoyed! It felt quite polished (and long
) for a NaNo. If I didn't know better, I wouldn't have thought this was made in a month and a bit.
I'll answer the second half of the question at the bottom of my review~
2. Who is your favorite character after playing the game?
Charming was, well, charming. She was a great narrator, and I loved her voice! She struck me as independent yet tactful, able to make decisions for herself but veiling them under good intentions or manipulation. Seeing a princess with some backbone, intuition, and level-headedness was amazing. Definitely a strong female character. I absolutely loved her!
(adding onto that, the writing was good, so everyone was well-written. that's why past charming, it's like everyone's ranked second on my list of favourites)
3. Who did you pursue first, and who is your favorite love interest?
I went Zel > Snow > Mer (reverse chronological :p), and after getting all the endings, I'm pretty happy I did that order. Geez Louise, I can't even begin to describe my descent from 'awww, this is so cute' to 'holy heck, i'm stuck in plot-whammed horror.' I think if I did Mer > Snow > Zel, I'd probably be super suspicious of the latter two and I wouldn't be able to enjoy them as much XD
I don't have a faourite, especially since I all like them for different reasons:
-Zel was cute and sweet. I felt like I was in a fluffy romance, and boy do I love fluffy romances. It just seemed like one long, steady development of love. And I absolutely adored it. It was also the 'longest(?)' route because it spanned for '2~ months,' so that's a plus.
-Snow focused more on the politics and worldbuilding of the kingdoms, and was different from Zel in a way that didn't feel like a complete jump from fluff to serious plot. It still had cute parts (the dance scene where charming actually dances; or if you were on the idealistic route and made him kiss you three times to 'prove it'), but it was balanced with a straightforward plot. Out of all the routes
, this one was my favourite.
-Mer(boy) was plain INTRIGUE. From start to finish, he was a total mystery that kept having tiny twists and turns. I was wondering how you'd incorporate the muteness and dagger from the original tale (plus the 'killing of the prince to get back the mermaid's voice') but I WASN'T EXPECTING IT TO BE LIKE THAT. Bonus points: was the 'shortest(?)' route because it spanned for '2~ weeks.'
-Zel has an award for BEST ROMANCE/DEVELOPMENT
-Snow has an award for BEST PLOT
-Mer has an award for BEST TWIST 10/10 WOULD DO AGAIN
4. What ending did you get first?
I got Zel Ending #2 (so zel's dragon adventure ending). Ack, that one was adorable. But it made a teeny tiny inconsistency with Charming's hair colour because the blue gradient seems to reach a bit below her shoulders, and we don't see it in her sprite/some of the CGs (namely snow's and mer's second).
I also did all the idealistic/nice endings first before the other ones, so it went like:
Zel #2, Zel #1, Snow #2, Snow #1, Mer #1, Mer #2.
Pretty interesting how Zel's endings are still 'romance-y' while Snow's 1st is more bromance, and Mer's 2nd is just...wow (wow in a good way, don't get me wrong; i absolutely loved it
). Makes me even happier I did the order that I did.
5. Is there anything in particular you would like to see in the expansion?
I second the notion of sprites for the parents (yay! i'll get to see what they look like!). And maybe some extra Nicholl + dragon screentime? I know the routes don't call for a lot of Nicholl, and the dragon's not the most important character, but I really really liked them so it'd be nice if they showed up more >_<
And I'm sure the expansion's going to answer most of the points below, but just in case, I'll add the stuff I want to see in it:
-who was the witch that kidnapped Zel (and why he was kidnapped)?
-backstory for Kailee?
-explanation for Grisalda (*gasp* grisalda screentime
-who's Prince (something?) (second prince of the snow kingdom; was that name on purpose?)
-backstory for Mer + curse?
-backstory for Mer's parents?
6. Other questions or points of critique?
People caught the errors I was going to talk about, so that's moot.
Other than that, I think I'm good ^^ There's a few inconsistencies here and there (mostly regarding art, like the sprite issue above, or how the backgrounds look different from each other), but they're pretty tiny concerns.
-Art was fantastic! If I had to say so myself, Mer's the most dashing haha. And the backgrounds. THE BACKGROUNDS. Goodness gracious, the magic room-thing was spectacular, as was the ballroom.
-MUSIC WAS GREAT. All the custom tracks were A+ (great work there!). I'm also glad you guys put down links for all the other music tracks (thank you~), but there's one specific track that I'm looking for, and I don't exactly have the time to find it through all that XD Maybe later, I guess.
-A LOT OF THE MUSIC TRACKS LOOP PERFECTLY TOO *thumbs up*
-GUI's very fairy tale-like. Shoutout to Alcor who worked on this AND another NaNo game! Kudos to you!
-I've said it before, but the writing's niiice
. Development, plot, characterization... You did an awesome job on all aspects!
But yeah, you all did such amazing work this past month and it definitely showed! I'll be looking forward to the expansion (new routes! longer routes! this is going to be a blast!). Keep it up!