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Dreamfall: The Longest Journey (Windows)

80
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.8
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Jack Lightbeard (2653)
Written on  :  Aug 27, 2006
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars

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Summary

The story continues, and it's a pretty decent sequel.

The Good

April Ryan returns in the sequel to The Longest Journey, along with two new characters to control, Zoë Castillo and Kian. You'll actually be controlling Zoë for about half the game. There's several characters and locations that will be familiar if you played the first game, but a lot has changed in the ten years since the first adventure, the story however is as developed as ever and the gaps will be filled in as you meet old friends and foes, and that's what this game is essentially all about, story, it's a game excuse for telling a reasonably long story, and it's told with a bit of film style directing.

And it's fun, sitting back and relaxing and listening to the conversations and watching the cutscenes is, well, relaxing. There's conversation options, which affect what you say or how you say it, they’ll be a descriptive sentence telling the thoughts of the character you happen to be controlling under each option, which is typically one word, such as a persons name or a reaction. It's not too involving, and everything ends up in the same place, Dreamfall is an extremely linear game, but it adds a flavour of variety.

There's the obligatory spooky girl ala The Ring / F.E.A.R. who visits Zoë via visions and TV screens, she has seemingly infiltrated ‘The Wire’, which is a worldwide network that everything is connected to (undies, toasters etc), the concept is certainly feasible, you'll even be using a mobile phone to keep in contact with friends and family (and hack corporate security systems).

Tapping the right mouse button lights up a blue line of sight beam from your character's toes to the top of the screen which can then be swept left and right highlighting any objects of interactivity or comment-worthiness.

The sets can be large and are usually quite pretty.

There’s combat, a strong attack, a normal attack, and the ability to block. Dreamfall’s combat has received a lot of criticism, or at least some people may be questioning it’s inclusion, and I can see why. I did however enjoy knocking out that secretarial security woman near the beginning of the game, and afterwards was as surprised as Zoë that the whole thing had actually happened!

The Bad

Although the sets can be large and usually quite pretty they're not very interactive, for example there’s only one pub that you can actually enter in Marcuria, despite their being several other establishments as just scenery with signs and front doors and all the indications of something actually being there, but with no way of interacting with them.

Like in the first game the conversations can drag a little and seem a little ordinary on occasions, though there's a decent story here too - and one that's told from perspectives of several characters (player and npc's alike).

The voice acting for Zoë is very bland with only the slightest hint of occasional emotion, I kid you not, I began to think that maybe it was the script, but other characters, some returning from the first game, do a much better job.

The Bottom Line

Dreamfall ends on a cliff hanger, it's essentially half a story, and half a story I enjoyed very much, I've had my Sunday roast now I want my crumble and custard and coffee by the fire, and a tale or two to finish the evening off. What I mean to say is that there are very few loose ends tied off, if any, there's going to be a sequel, and I'm looking forward to it.

P.S.

Make sure you let the credits roll, as there’s a final scene at the end.