Dark Dimensions: City of Ash
It's Short. Who Cares? NOT ME!!
Game review is of completed game. My full rating is 4.5
My trial of the CE was interrupted, so I thought I?d trial the SE, and I?m so glad I did! This is the first Dark Dimensions game I?ve ever bought and I loved it to the end!
Yes, the game is short, but I don?t care! The story was something different from the norm nowadays and was a delight to play. I was gripped from the start, and happily played out my game. While it wasn?t the most exciting story ever, I was compelled enough by the demo, and eventually uncovered the whole truth. The story took an unexpected twist near the end, much to my delight. The ending is conclusive in the SE, but was a little disappointing. Not much happened really. I was expecting to jump out of my seat with excitement, but instead, let out a sarcastic ?wow.? This was the only real disappointment of the story, which was otherwise fantastic.
Beginners should have no trouble in this game as the gameplay is very simple and straightforward, with a lot of locations to explore and a lot of things to do in locations. Kudos to the developers for this. There are 3 modes of difficulty: Casual, Advanced and Hard. The differences are listed below:
Casual: Fast hint and skip recharge speed, sparkles on active areas, items and zoom in scenes, no miss-click penalty.
Advanced: Slower hint and skip recharge, no sparkles on anything except HOS, miss-click penalty.
Hard: NO hint and skip, no sparkles. You receive no help at all on this mode.
HOS AND PUZZLES:
The HOS were honestly my favourite part of the game. Is that wrong? I loved how different they were, and I was delighted every time I ran in to one! I?ve seen reviewers complaining about the amount, but who cares when they are this good! Each HOS is played twice, with the first being the classic junkpile and the second being silhouette. Both were fairly easy, but I enjoyed them. Junkpile scenes contained several ?extra-step? objects, but the silhouette scenes contained none. While I found both to be enjoyable, I much preferred the junkpile scenes.
The puzzles were a mixed bag. Some were easy and others were hard. The puzzles at the beginning were the easiest for me, but I did manage to solve a few more after that. The puzzles had clear instructions, which was great.
GRAPHICS & MUSIC:
The graphics are much more colourful and brighter than in previous Dark Dimensions, which was a welcome change for me. The artwork is extremely well-done, with some scenes almost seeming realistic. I was stunned at how well the artwork was drawn. Well done, developers! However, while I was impressed with the graphics, I had two major issues:
My first and biggest issue was that everything seemed out of place. This game says that the town was destroyed in 1956, and from the looks of things, you are returning to the town after it?s destroyed, but to me, everything about this screamed modern. I don?t know, but everything seemed to be too new for the 1950s. There were some things that were from the 1950s, for example, news broadcasts via radios, but everything else to me seemed more modern than the 1950s.
My second issue: They definitely were NOT kidding when they called the game City of Ash. There was ash everywhere! Trophies turned to ash, ghosts turned to ash, ash was used in the game, you name it, it had ash in it. A bit to over the top with the ash theme, developers.
As for the music, I didn?t pay much attention to it. It was not loud enough to put me off, but then again it was too quiet for me to pay much attention?
- 3 modes of play- Casual, Advanced and Hard. I played Casual.
- Hint and Skip- both recharged fairly quickly on Casual and the hint is fairly useful outside HOS.
- There is a map. The map is interactive and shows where there are objectives to complete, to save time backtracking. I found the map to be extremely helpful.
- Journal. The journal keeps track of your findings. It is used fairly often in the early stages of the game, but after the first hour, is hardly used again, which is a little disappointing.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this game. I really enjoyed it from beginning to end and can?t wait to play it again. It is fairly short, but I honestly did not care as the game was SO much fun! Glad I got this with my free coupon. I HIGHLY recommend this game! You will love it!
August 2, 2013
Ashes to ashes . . . literally
Game flowed quite well. Hint button was very directional. Audrey (main character) herself was intriguing. Did not need map, although journal was good for backup notes. Only had to hit the walkthrough twice, which says a lot for the game. Game was shorter than most, but was put together without a busload of "back and forth" which drives me up a wall. This game was well worth the money and I would like to see more on this series from the developer.
July 6, 2013
I'm not giving it FIVE stars because it was way to short! But it was fun and having played in the expert mode I didn't need one hint. There was on snag in the game but I seemed to have found a way around it... The ending gave the player a little bit of closure instead of just ending cold. I appreciated that. If it were a little longer than it would've rec'd five stars. (2013)
July 24, 2013
Good addition to the series!
This was about the same level as the others in the Dark Dimensions series...good challenge, interesting art work, and good story to follow. My only issue is that it seemed shorter than others in the series.
October 7, 2013
Disappointed with Dark Dimensions
I enjoyed the game...what there was of it. The shortness came as a big surprise and that affects how I will review this. If length is important to you, as it is to me, then you might not want this game.
I don't usually play with the sound on so I can't rate that. I did like the graphics and the story line. It wasn't a difficult game but that is okay. I play for fun and not so much for challenge.
I was expecting more length so I am definitely disappointed. I absolutely love the other Dark Dimension games.
I recommend this game but with reservations.
July 3, 2013
Shortest game ever!! Ok, you want me to say more...this is the shortest game I've ever played and I'm SO glad I used a credit on the SE and did not get the CE.
July 1, 2013
No splashes for ashes
I truly wanted to like this game. The story seemed unusual, but it was the typical "save us from evil"....only done poorly. I cannot remember if I have played Dark Dimension games before, but if this was an improvement as some have said.....enjoy the demo.
The story line kept going over and over with childish scrawls from Audrey (SUPER VOLUNTEER of the town) to her mother begging her misguided father to stop mining. This was done exactly the same at least three times. It seemed to be a misconnect as if she was a child, but other times a responsible adult???? I still don't know.
The mini games were glitchy....no direction or clues. Some of the wording in the game was as if it were lost in translation.
I finished the game and I cannot even remember how it ended. That should speak volumes. Oh...the lady in the picture above?.....never saw her unless she was a ghost!
Sorry to say this one wasn't for me.
September 7, 2013
This was an okay game. Short but bright with pretty graphics. It had the standard..no this can't be..demise of the bad guy at the end. Peeve for me was no directions for the mini games at all. I did manage to figure them out after some trial and error but still. You are called to the usual deserted town to figure out what happened and follow notes and a couple of ash ghosts to all the clues. Mix of HO's with some lists and some silhouettes. I liked this one ..it was fine for what it was. A short, pretty looking. rather average game with nice music.
August 19, 2013
Review based on completed game in casual mode.
Animation/VOS - Okay.
IHOS - Fairly clear. Small to larger objects. Repeated locations. Lists and shapes.
Random Click Penalty - None.
Hint - Moderate charge. Gives clues and directions.
Map - Does transport but I found the hint to be easier.
Puzzles/Mini-Games - Many unique varieties rather than the usual sliders, rings, etc. Fast skip.
Diary - Contains story, photos, clues, etc. Also two short stories from the past.
I could not immerse myself in this game. I began to lose interest about half way through but decided to finish it. To me, it's not game that's a "must have". Great deal of traveling to do.
August 3, 2013
I really like this series, wax beauty is my favorite as I thought it was well written and unique and I absolutely love this developer's hidden object scenes however this game didn't live up to the hype of the last two in this series. I felt like this game was rushed and didn't tell the story very well because of it. There seemed to be nothing all that worthwhile to uncover and by the time you get to mine, the game is over.
I did like the interactive hidden object scenes and actually wished there had been more. The puzzles were okay. Some were really easy, some took me longer to solve and others I just skipped out of sheer boredom. The game mechanics are fun but the story line doesn't hold up well. The visual/sound quality was very nice. I liked the music and the voice overs were done well however the plot just never captured my interest the way it should have so I never got emotionally wrapped up in this game therefore I felt like it was more of a chore to play. Hopefully the next one in the series will be a bit more likeable, longer and have a better plot line. I like these games because they are unique but this one felt cookie cutter and unoriginal.
It does have a proper ending so if for some reason this game does tickle your fancy, it will satisfy you without having to purchase the collectors edition. For that alone, I recommend this game but the plot doesn't get better as it goes along so if you like a good story like myself, this is not it.
October 25, 2013