First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

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First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

Post  trevuar25 on Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:03 pm

Hello,

My name is Trevuar25. I'm a huge rpg fan and I love anything that is free especially games. Smile and I would love to share my first thoughts/review of soulfu with you as a gamer. I hope this review is taken seriously and without offense, as I too am an indie developer(writer, composer, sound designer). I didn't play through the entire game, but I would like to review what I experienced.


Review

The Good

The Engine

After downloading and playing SoulFu I found the engine to be quite polished, solid framerate throughout gameplay even with a lot of models on screen. The menu is great, allowing customization in a lot of areas including custom controls, and a lot of screen resolutions and other advanced graphical options you don't usually see in an independent game.

The Graphics

The characters and style reminds me a bit of Wii characters and is generally pleasing to the eye. I love the way the characters are proportioned giving it a cartoony style that is just awesome.

Player Customization

Being able to name and customize a character is a HUGE plus. Choosing your characters clothes, hair, and skin are great features that really make me want to get into the game.

The Bad

Story

Starting a new game I realized that there really isn't anything telling me where I should go or why. I found this problematic, as not knowing what to do or why in a game is generally a kiss of death for me (as I play games as a story medium and love experiencing a new story). I would love to have seen a simple splash screen in the beginning maybe explaining the world that I'm about to enter as a player. If there's any conflict, what is it? Why should I care as a character in this world. I felt that those questions weren't answered. I think the beginning should have had some sort of tutorial character that you interact with who tells you how to control your character.

Controls/Combat

While the controls are customizable, I felt that not being able to set my attack button to "mouse1" extremely frustrating. In a game like this being able to just click on your enemy to attack it would be so much simpler for the player than having to face the enemy and then hitting the attack key. If with the mouse I could select and enemy and then attack it, it would make so much more sense and I would probably enjoy combat instead of dreading it. I generally don't like turn based combat, but I think it would be a better system than the current one to allow the player to select attacks and defense and then animate it.

Also, starting a new game the default controls would be a lot better if they were W.S.A.D for movement.

Music and Sounds

When the game starts there are light sounds, and a little music for the menu. But the rest of the game that I've seen has yet to have any music. The sounds in the game aren't bad, but there aren't enough of them. There's a lot of silence where there could be a cool theme, or some sort of soundscape to get the imagination flowing like there's something going on in the background.

Walking Animation

The combat animations and jumping animations were great, but while walking my character looks like he's doing some sort of shuffle dance.


Conclusion
While Soulfu looks and runs great even on my older laptop, the glaring lack of story presentation and hard to manage combat to me is a tough sell (even for free). If those 2 things were addressed I would probably keep playing this game for hours and tell as many people about it as possible.


trevuar25

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Re: First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

Post  ditto on Fri Sep 10, 2010 11:32 pm

I really have to disagree with some of these points of "the bad."

Firstly, there are new versions with music.
http://soulfu.forumotion.com/development-f4/different-versions-t3.htm
I don't know about all of them, but at the very least, captain innocuous's version does.

Secondly, point and click soulfu would make me stop playing it. Forever. Period. You get my point. Soulfu's combat system is great because you're in full control of your character. You can move and jump out of the way of attacks, you can jump in and attack, you can lead an enemy across a room away from the other guys and then knock it down and kill it, you can do pretty much anything you want to, and so combat becomes a matter of quick thinking and tactics, rather than mindless point and click grinding, which makes it so awesome. If we just had it so you point on an enemy and click to attack, that destroys the ability to use all those tactics because you can't point and click at the same time as dodging attacks or moving around very well. I don't want to see soulfu become mmo style (point, click, auto attack.) Maybe pointing and clicking would be good for stuff like aimed ranged attacks, but I don't think this should dominate how you fight.

Thank you for the review, but I'd like to say that I really don't think this is the kind of game soulfu is supposed to be.

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Re: First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

Post  trevuar25 on Tue Sep 14, 2010 5:16 am

I just felt that combat was too sloppy even with customizable controls. I kept thinking "There's got to be an easier way to fight enemies" It would be great to have some sort of targeting system involved as well. I just suggested a point and click interface because I've seen it done and it generally works well.

My biggest beef is with the lack of a story Sad I play most games to experience a story.

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Re: First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

Post  ditto on Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:05 am

Yeah, but do we really want the game to be easy? Plenty of players enjoy the difficult combat system.

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Re: First thoughts of SoulFu (mini review)

Post  trevuar25 on Wed Sep 15, 2010 2:36 am

I just played SoulFu again to get a better understanding of the game/engine. I realize what I don't like about combat now. It's the movement system. Because the character has to rotate to start moving that direction it really drives me bonkers Mad especially when trying to move backwards. I feel like a chicken with his head cut off when trying to move a direction I'm not currently facing.

I did get a better grasp of the combat and actually found it pretty fun, but the movement system confuses and annoys me scratch

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