Video Game Amnesia Fortnight 2014

Amnesia Fortnight 2014

Overview: Members of Double Fine pitch their ideas and the top three voted by the Humble Bundle community were subsequently built into prototypes over the course of two weeks. The three are Dear Leader, Mnemonic, and Steed. A fourth prototype by Pendleton Ward was also voted by the community. Among the four ideas he pitched, the top-voted idea was Little Pink Best Buds.

Mnemonic
Relevant Links:
Amnesia Fortnight 2014 (Wikipedia.org)
My Video Game Amnesia Fortnight 2012 post.

Amnesia Fortnight Games:
Little Pink Best Buds
Dear Leader
Mnemonic
Steed

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Little Pink Best Buds

Little Pink Best Buds - everybody wants you to pick him/her
20160106:
The goal of Little Pink Best Buds is to interact with little pink creatures. From what I gather, it's possible that a full implementation of the game would consist of different stories depending on who you interact with.

In the prototype, however, you can only become best friends with Big Leg. After some time, you and Big Leg will enter the house and the eventually there is an outro which plays and finishes the story.

While simple, the prototype has a lot of potential in terms of becoming a full game, especially if it managed to improve on natural language processing.

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Dear Leader

Dear Leader
20160106:
Dear Leader is a game about making choices, some serious (like choosing to arrest a troublemaker or execute him/her) and some light-hearted (like renaming the city or choosing your title).

Some of the mishaps that occur due to the prototype nature of the game include the following:
1) The game seems to lose track of what's happening to each character. For example, perhaps I assassinated someone and the game thinks he/she is still alive.

Dear Leader - using a custom official seal
2) The game references a 'Search Edict' but no 'Search Edict' exists. Though I vaguely recall it popped up once before never appearing again.
3) The game doesn't notify the player when there is essentially no more to do.

Promising aspects:
1) Various objects in the room were clickable, but their interactions were short-lived. If this game is still in development, it'd be great if such interactions went further.
2) Customization draws the player into the game.

Ultimately, this game was great at building my interest, and while I wanted it to continue, I eventually exhausted all that the prototype had to offer.

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Mnemonic

Mnemonic - unlock and access your memories
20160110:
Mnemonic is a noir adventure where the player is a man who retraces and investigates his own memories in order to recall what has already occurred.

1) Touchpad works for looking around, but I couldn't interact with items while simultaneously focusing on them.
2) I plugged in my mouse and that allowed me to interact with items.
3) Some items were suppose to go to my inventory, but they didn't. I had to restart the game.
4) Finished all that the developers laid out for the prototype.

Thus far, Mnemonic is the best of the prototypes I've played and the one prototype I'd like to see completed and released as a full game.

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Steed

Steed - rear attack
20160111:
Steed is an adventure game where the player is a horse named Bellfire.

In the prototype, gallop around as Bellfire along with a boy named Twig, pressing E to do what horses do. Eventually, when you run into enemies, given them a good front kick or back kick, holding down the front kick for a powerful stomp.

The game eventually gives the player a couple of other fun mechanics before the narrator thanks the player for playing the prototype (after pressing 'Spacebar' to get off the water wheel).

Mnemonic - working inventory (key and lamp)
Summary:
With respect to the progress of the prototypes as they're presented, I most liked Mnemonic. Not only did it manage to practically tell a full story, despite being just a prototype, but its genre happens to be among my favorites: mysteries and thrillers.

My second favorite prototype was Steed. I liked how it was story-driven, like Mnemonic, and I also liked the details with respect to the Bellfire's actions. Being able to play as an animal, as opposed to a human-like character, is also refreshing (Okami, Shelter, and Ecco the Dolphin are the only other 'animal' games which immediately come to mind). Finally, I also enjoyed the sounds, voice, and narration.

Steed - Bellfire balances atop a water wheel
Picking a third favorite is a bit tough. Little Pink Best Buds was kind of strange, but eventually told a story and ended strong. In contrast, Dear Leader had the stronger gameplay but was arguably the most buggy and unfortunately ended on a weak note - no indication of completion.* While the two games come close, I would slightly put Little Pink Best Buds above Dear Leader.

*Apparently the prototype does have an ending but it failed to trigger during my playthrough. This, however, would go back to the point on being the buggiest of the four.

Little Pink Best Buds - Big Leg admits he's 'killed a guy once.'

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