Friday, February 6, 2004
Posted by Philip Colmer in "SOFTWARE" @ 10:00 AM
If you are a regular reader of my reviews, you'll know that I don't make any comment on the price of the item under review. I prefer to leave that to you. In the case of this game, I will break my rule. I know that some of you will think that this game is too expensive. You will make comparisons against other games and other pieces of software available for the Pocket PC. You might even think about the fact that you can really only play it once.
However, I think that this game is good value for money. The developers have clearly spent a lot of time creating the images, the story and plot line, the puzzles and the overall product. The nature of this product means that there will be a small target audience and that inevitably means that the price will be higher than one aimed at a mass audience. Unfortunately for the Fade Team, lowering the price isn't necessarily going to get them many more sales, so they have to pitch the price that (a) will be deemed right by most people and (b) give them a decent return for the sales that they do attract.
There are just some products that you have to pay a premium price for … and I think that FADE is one of those products.
As I've mentioned a couple of times, the game play is linear. By that, I mean that if the game requires you to, say, get a camera and a film for the camera, it won't allow you to get the film first. This can be a bit restrictive because, as I illustrated with the cigarette example, if you've already failed to get the secondary item, you might not be on the lookout for it after you've got past the primary hurdle.
Another consequence of the linear flow is that exits and actions often don't appear until you've got all of the information or objects that you need. This does have a benefit, in that you can't make any mistakes, but it also means that once you've played the game, that's it. There aren't any different ways to play it.
There isn't a lot of audio to the game – a few sound effects scattered through the game. It would be nice to have some background music, perhaps reflecting the period of the game or the location.
One thing I hadn't appreciated before starting to play this game was that it is intended for an adult audience. There are some scenes of nudity and the text occasionally includes swearing. As an adult, it didn't really worry or upset me, but it might others and I think that the Fade Team might want to avoid potential problems like that in future games.
Where To Buy
The software can be downloaded from Handango or purchased for $29.90 (affiliate link). The link provided is for the ARM & Windows Mobile 2003 versions. There are separate versions for SH3 processors and Mips processors, plus a French version for ARM & Windows Mobile 2003 devices. There is a demo available; it will play for a couple of hours before stopping.
The game requires 12Mbytes and can be installed onto a storage card. It will work with Pocket PC 2000, 2002 and Windows Mobile 2003. Versions are available for ARM, MIPS and SH3 processors.
I love graphical adventure games. They challenge me and encourage me to think outside the box a bit more than I might normally. Add to that the quality of images that you get with FADE, and you have an amazing game. The plot is intriguing – once you start playing, you might find it difficult to put down, just like a really exciting book. If you enjoy puzzles and adventure games, give this a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed.