DreamfallAugust 29, 2008
With the said much time at hand I’m also finally able to play some games I always somehow wanted to play but never had the moment where I was just sitting before my computer wondering what to do now and coincidentally looking at the game box I bought some time ago and thinking that this finally might be the time to finally play that thing that I spend good money on after all. However, this wasn’t the case with Dreamfall … but it was the case with The Longest Journey, which is the predecessor of Dreamfall and which, in fact, I only bought because I heard so much good about Dreamfall. And, to finally make a point, I finished Dreamfall this week and I must (gladly) agree that it is surely a great game worth playing, especially because of its absorbing story.
But I can’t help but wonder if this story is so well written as they say as well, because in the end this game goes pretty much Neon Genesis Evangelion on its players and leaves lots of questions unanswered and lots of situations unresolved. This might be intentional to let the player/viewer leave space for speculation and to fill the holes left at their liking, but it can also be a rather cheap way of avoiding the fact that ones own story just got too big and no good conclusion could be found in the end. Independent from this it could also be because of funds running out, which is at least true for NGE, but looking at everything that followed the original series I believe nobody really has any answers to give and I don’t think that anybody really wants any answers anymore. Well, anyway, from my point of view it is rather easy to build up an epic story, finishing it in a satisfying way certainly isn’t. And therefore, this is the main point at which good storytelling should be judged.
Having said the above, I’d like to once again confirm that, like NGE, Dreamfall is a great experience. It’s just that it leaves such a heavy feeling of incompleteness that even after a few days I still catch myself nearly starting the game to play on only to realise that there is no more to play. But, at least, there seems to be a good chance for a sequel that hopefully will finish the story satisfyingly in the end. So, everybody who likes story-driven adventures should give Dreamfall a try as well as its predecessor, The Longest Journey, but please take this last warning:
Just don’t finish this game at the end of an already bad day!