Sunday, July 2, 2017

Evoland & Evoland 2 - Initial Thoughts

About the Game (From the Steam Store Page)


Evoland is a journey through the history of action/adventure gaming, allowing you to unlock new technologies, gameplay systems and graphic upgrades as you progress through the game. Inspired by many cult series that have left their mark in the RPG video gaming culture, Evoland takes you from monochrome to full 3D graphics and from active time battles to real time boss fights, all with plenty of humor and references to many classic games.

Evoland 2

Evoland 2 graphics style is changing as you travel through time and its gameplay evolves as you move along the storyline. It is also a real RPG at heart, with a deep scenario based on time travel: explore different eras and change the history of the world. But are you sure that the consequences will not make things worse?

Full of humor and references to classic games, the aptly named Evoland 2, A Slight Case of Spacetime Continuum Disorder brings a truly epic and extraordinary adventure, unlike anything you’ve ever played before!

Previous Playtime

0 hours

What Was I Thinking When I Bought This

With the first Evoland, I thought the premise was pretty cute. As you advance in the game, the graphics style becomes more modern. Since I've been playing rpgs since the original Final Fantasy on the NES, it looked like a fun little romp through my childhood nostalgia.

My thought when buying Evoland 2 was, "oh shit, all these Evoland reviews have less than 6 hours, and I don't necessarily want to play the game four times in a row, oh, it has a sequel, maybe I could play the two games together and still keep a shred of my integrity . . ."

I always feel a little disingenuous when I bundle games together, as if I'm trying to skirt around the edges of my self-imposed goal. Then I remember that I played 20 hours of Sakura Spirit and give myself permission to fudge the numbers just a little bit. And seeing as how I explicitly bought Evoland 2 for no reason other than to bundle it with Evoland, it feels mostly legitimate to me.

Expectations and Prior Experience

I'm going in mostly blind, with only the store page screenshots to judge by, but it looks like I've played a lot of the sort of games Evoland is parodying and I've always enjoyed them. I don't think I'm going to have any problem getting to 20 hours on these two.

That being said, the expanded scope and ambition of Evoland 2 reminds me a bit of the Half Minute Hero series, where you had the first game with a fun original idea and then a second game that took itself way to seriously and lost track of what made the first game great. I have no reason to think Evoland 2 has fallen into that particular trap, but if I'm being pessimistic I have to acknowledge it as a possibility.

It will probably still be fun, though. It's possible to make a console-jrpg-inspired game that is a massive slog, but I feel like the flaws and pitfalls of the genre have been so thoroughly investigated over the years that you'd have to be deliberately oblivious to not design around them.

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