Disclaimer: I’m also competing in the cup, I am not a judge!
This is an Adventure / RPG, made in C++, and powered by the FlareRPG Engine. It’s the first game to use the “Orthogonal” engine, instead of the “Isometric” one (Take a look at FlareRPG’s Screenshots if you want to check what an Isometric view is). Compiling it was quite simple, the instructions are quite clear. All you need to do is set up the sdl-devel pacakges, and mkdir build && cd build && cmake .. && make. Once that’s done, you can move the polymorphable binary to the folder below, and launch it.
You start out as Daphne, an otherwise ordinary Citizen of Laurelia. You can walk around with WASD, and set up hotkeys for 0-9 to attacks and items, by dragging the icon into the bar.
There’s a nice minimap on the top right corner that shows where you are and the general outline of the area. Once you navigate your way throug Laurelia, you can find the Major in the big blue mansion. You’ll be given a sword, and a task: Go find flowers.As soon as you head north, you fall into a pit, and explore some caves around with bats.
The combat system took a bit geting used to. You can either left click, or use a hotkey to ‘swing your sword’ in the direction your mouse is facing, not the direction your character is facing. The dagger/sword’s hitbox is too small, but it’s functional. I’m just nervous of getting too close to the enemies. When surrounded, I used a Thunder Cloud attack to hit all nearby enemies. It drained my mana, but it was a lot easier to deal with mobs.
You’ll quickly find the Bat Talisman, which is the game’s highlight: You can “morph” into different animals and use their skills. Bats, for instance, can fly over holes, while Ghosts can cross lava pits without being killed by them (though they are hurt, a bit) and Snakes can shoot acid (Though it looks like Thunder, hah)
I must’ve died half a dozens times in that first dungeon, getting the hang of combat, and figuring out how to unmorph from the bat (Right click, btw!), which helped me get dozens of carrots. Your gold, however, is halved every time you die, which made racking up gold an extremely difficult task… Unless you abuse an exploit I figured out: Chests autospawn every time you enter a room, so chests that give money (in later levels) can be reopened for infinite cash! (The developers know this already.) I used this exploit to buy a sword early in the game, and stock up on carrots and watermelons.
I managed to explore the volcano, as well as a castle, and got a Ghost and a Snake talisman. Due to the limited time I have available, I couldn’t finish the game in time for the review, but I’m happy to say that it’s quite lengthy, and I’m looking forward to finishing the story! The game is quite fun.
The dialogue of the story is humorous, with Daphne being the sarcastic / incredulous chick. I enjoyed reading her story and really wanted to find the other half of the Juggernaut and finish the game. The music is cheerful, and there’s even a quest log that tells you were to go next. The game comes with a built-in save system, so you can resume your quest later.
I enjoyed the overall game. I did often get stuck, for instance… being unable to cross over a river, until I remembered that I could morph into different enemies to get through the game. It feels good to figure out what you have to do without all the hand holding, but I’m embarrased to admit that it sometimes took me longer than it should’ve, to actually figure it out. What can I say? I’m used to having a game guide next to me to hold my hand when I get stuck.
As a footnote, I originally had a ton of issues with the game’s combat system. Apparently, it’s a known bug. It happens if you check the “Use Joystick” box under Options, which I had checked but forgot about. With it unchecked, the combat is actually quite enjoyable, so make sure it’s unchecked!
I highly recommend this game for its length, its original story and game play mechanics, and it’s usage of the LPC resources. It’s one of the games I’m looking forward to package for Fedora.