Brink of Consciousness: Dorian Gray Syndrome Collector's Edition
Excellent gameplay and production value more than makes up for a weak story.
I wasn't particularly intrigued with Brink of Consciousness after playing through the demo, but I was drawn in enough by the graphics and atmosphere that I resolved to buy the SE if it ever went up for the Daily Deal. When the CE came up on sale for $4.99 not long after, I simply couldn't pass on the opportunity. Despite a silly premise, I was captivated by the gorgeous graphics and strong adventure game elements. Thankfully, the more I played, the more I became enveloped in the story, even though I didn't quite care for it in the beginning.
I would classify Dorian Gray as more of an adventure game than HOG as there aren't many hidden object scenes, but that suited me just fine as I'm more of an adventure gamer than anything else. There is quite a bit of backtracking and exploration, and a large number of items find their way into your inventory, all of which I know many HOG gamers are not fond of, but I thoroughly enjoyed those elements of the game as they get me exploring and help immerse me into the game world.
My play through took about 12 hours (both main game and bonus chapter). I played on Expert with minimal hint usage and only consulted the strategy guide a couple of times. I generally take my time and try to stay away from the Hint/Skip button unless I'm completely stuck. This not only helps immerse me in the game world, but stretches out the playtime giving me more bang for my buck.
- Gorgeously detailed graphics and locations
- Nice unobtrusive music (although somewhat unmemorable)
- Sound effects are very good, especially the room specific noises that add greatly to the atmosphere
- Hidden Object Scenes are clean and organized with items that make sense to the locations
- Hidden Object Scene color schemes are somewhat muted making the searches easier on your eyes
- A huge number of areas to explore, one of the largest IHOGs I've played
- Map (thank goodness) that updates as you play
- Toggleable grain filter is a nice touch and helps add to the game's atmosphere
- Puzzles are easy, most of which require very little thought (and are often just repetitive tasks once you figure out the method)
- Voice acting can be melodramatic, although admittedly better than most other HOGs
- Oscar shows up and is heard a bit too much which often pulled me out of my "adventure gamer" mode, but this is a personal gripe and others may have no problem with it
- Storyline is a bit hokey
One of my biggest gripes is when devs cut off the last chapter in the SE requiring you to pick up the CE to get a satisfying conclusion to the story. That is not the case here. The main game sufficiently wraps up the plot and completely stands up on its own. The bonus chapter picks up a few months later and doesn't add much more to the overall storyline. I preferred the main game's ending personally, as the bonus ending seemed silly and implausible to me. That said, the new locations and gameplay were of the same high quality and worth playing through, but not required to fully enjoy the main game's storyline. Adding only another hour of gameplay, maybe two if you're playing on Expert without using hints, those on a budget should feel safe picking up the SE as you're not missing out on very much of the story at all.
The rest of the bonus materials is where the real value of the CE lies, however. The full soundtrack is included with the ability to download to your desktop in OGG format (something more CE's need to start doing). The concept art, wallpapers and Oscar "cartoons" are also nice additions, but it's the interview with developers that I enjoyed the most. This is one of the few CE's that I really felt like I was getting my full money's worth.
Bottom Line - Beautiful game that's a bit too easy, but gameplay and scope make it worth the journey.
November 1, 2012
An absorbing game !
MagicIndie games are always value for money. They have great music,sound effects,illustrations,quality puzzles / HOBs and first class story lines. This one is no exception. This is a dark and twisted game. There is no light relief. In the collectors edition that I played you have a choice of endings. Neither is a traditional happy one. Here is a battle of good and evil done with realistic perception with good puzzles, some hard,some easy. It is the small details that draw you into the game. Quickening of breath, fast pulse beatings and sighing. Take your time, go slow, and the reward is one of the best game you can play !
July 25, 2012
worth the CE price
pretty good game, didn't even mind the voices in this one, except for the coughing, breathing and hmmmmmm sounds, really could have done without those. Good length and plenty of places to explore. Hidden object scenes and puzzles somewhat challenging but not expert level. Wish they had expanded the bonus scene into a sequel game.
January 2, 2012
Sample hour only
The art and visuals were good. Storyline is a little slow, but enjoyed it. The mini games were varied but easily figured out. I also liked the strategy guide easily available and a map so I knew where I was and where I was going. I enjoyed this game
December 29, 2011
Brink of Unconsciousness
I liked this game very much. I like the challenge of travelling to many locations. But could somebody make the villain shut up?
The length of the game is wonderful-something I always look for. Enjoy!
March 4, 2012
This was a great game which I enjoyed playing. Would have given it 5 stars if there was a map that took you directly to where you neede to go - instead you spend most of your time going back and forth. Just the RIGHT about of Hidden Object games (other game developers take NOTE), not overdone like most games. Really liked this one more and Adventure game - my favorite type of game.
January 9, 2012
Loved the voice over and the extra help when trying to find out what to do next. Great graphics and sound.
Not for young kids though, I think it might scare them.
December 29, 2011
This was a fun game to play. The games were different and challenging.
Some games could use more explanation.
December 29, 2011
I love hidden object games and i have to say this is one of the best ones i played. Love the scenes and the story line. i would recomend it.
December 26, 2011
My thoughts on Brink of Consciousness
Having just finished the 60 minute preview, my opinion might be a bit premature. But in my experience, that precious first hour will usually tell you everything you need to know. And what I know so far is, this game is very pleasing, visually, challenge wise and well worth the 2 credits. Personally my only complaint might be the "villian" and his constant voice overs. I felt he didn't need to comment on every last thing that was accomplished. Every so often is fine. But he was like that annoying neice or nephew at the family reunion who will not stop talking no matter how many hints you drop!! LOL
All in all, excellent game and I look foward to finishing it. But hopefully not to quickly!!
December 26, 2011