Sunday, 9 February 2014

Game 40: Future Wars - Won!

Hero Journal Entry 5: "I never wanted to be a hero! It's preposterous to think that just days ago I was cleaning the side of a building in the year 1990. Now I'm a hero in the year 4315, having travelled 65 million years into the past to reprogram the last of the Crughon's bombs in the process. Humanity has won the war, and Lo'Ann and I played a huge role in that victory. I just hope things will be quiet for a while now so I can get to know my new friend more and get some well deserved rest."

Looks like I'll have to hijack this thing!

Game 40 is in the bag! I knew when I finished my last post that the climax of Future Wars was approaching, and in theory that was true. I was indeed very close to the end, but it took me close to two hours to actually make it happen, for reasons you’ll understand soon enough. This last session began with me approaching the Crughon ship on my own, having sent Lo’Ann back to the year 4315 for medical attention. When I was standing in front of the entrance, I could see a Crughon corpse lying beneath the ship. Examining it revealed a magnetic card in its pocket, which I took with me onto the ship. I found myself standing in what appeared to be a cockpit, with a video camera turning to monitor my movements. I didn’t seem to be able to interact with the ship’s console, which was surprising, but I could play around with the hibernation box in the corner and a panel on the wall. I could see that there was a garment in the hibernation box, but I struggled to find a way to open it. I tried operating the lid numerous times with no success, so I turned my attention to the panel on the wall. There was a card-reader, so I used the magnetic card I’d recently acquired on it. “Ah! It pops out again. You take it back.” It didn’t seem that anything much had happened, but I did notice there were a few more lights shining on the panel that weren’t there previously.

It's not like I can talk. My next shower will likely occur around 65 million years from now!

Hi mum!

I went back to the box, and figured out that examining the base revealed a mechanism to open it. The glass lid rose, allowing me to pick up the garment within. Clicking on the box caused my character to get into it and lay down. I was concerned about the video camera on the wall, but since there didn’t seem to be a way to turn it off, decided to try closing the lid. The ship took off and travelled away from Earth, swirling through some sort of wormhole until it arrived at a space station! As soon as the ship landed, I was greeted by a huge Crughon reception committee and captured. Game over! The message made a point of mentioning that the aliens had been monitoring me the whole time, so I figured the video camera was the likely culprit. I restored my game back to the cockpit and tried using the garment on the camera. It worked, meaning the Crughons wouldn’t be able to see me in the hibernation box. This time after travelling to the space station, I awoke alone in the cockpit, although I could see a couple of guards waiting outside the ship. I stood up, but before I could do anything else the door opened and two guards came in and caught me again! Clearly I was supposed to use the invisibility pill before they entered, but I was going to have to restore and try again. This was particularly annoying as there was no way to skip the lengthy cutscene that showed my trip from Earth to the station and I hadn't saved my game in time.

This doesn't seem risky at all...right?

Whhhoooaahhh!!! Like trippy dude!

Seriously guys, you didn't have to do all this just for me!

As soon as I arrived the next time, I saved my game so I wouldn’t have to endure the cut scene again. Just as well too, as I died quite a few more times before I finally managed to avoid the guards. The trick was to walk to the back of the room next to the door, and then take the invisibility pill just before the guards entered. I then had to go through the doorway, down the ramp, and then finally walk straight past them and hide behind the boxes before the effects of the pill ran out. I wasted a fair bit of time trying to go through the door I could see at ground level until I finally tried simply walking behind the boxes. Once I’d had success, I found I could interact with one of the boxes, and doing so caused my character to hop inside and close it back up. Obviously the box was moved to another location, because I hopped out into a room containing numerous other bits of cargo. It was in this room that Albert II opened communication with me again. “Sir, it’s Albert II... The mental interface! Thank God we’ve found you again! The Earth fleet has just arrived here. We’re going to set up a diversionary attack to allow you to get to the computer inside the Crughon fortress. But we won’t be able to hold out for more than SIX minutes! So you’ve only got SIX MINUTED TO REPROGRAM THE BOMB AND MAKE YOUR GETAWAY. The computer is on the last level of the fortress. GOOD LUCK, sir. Over and out.”

How the hell could we lose to anyone when we have invisibility technology!? know...why not!?

Apparently Albert II can pick the difference between audible versions of 2 and II!

When I left the room, I found myself in a corridor, with ladders ascending and descending. A large red timer appeared at the top of the screen and began ticking down from 6:00. Oh no...a maze! I soon discovered that this maze had innumerable dead ends too, which when combined with the time limit made for a hair-tearing experience. To make matters worse, it was extremely difficult to get my character to stop running exactly in front of a ladder, which was required to use it. I can’t tell you how many times I was forced to restore after wasting valuable seconds just trying to align myself where I needed to be just to climb a bloody ladder! When I finally found a doorway that had four large arrows directing me into it, I found that I wasn’t able to go inside. I figured I must have stumbled across the getaway path before the computer room, but there was nothing to tell me whether or not I was right. Albert II had told me that the computer I needed was on the “last level of the fortress”, so you’d think climbing down as many times as I could would lead to success. Nope! I had to climb most of the way down, then climb up numerous other ladders, and then begin descending downwards again until I finally found what I was looking for. By then my clock was nearly at 0:00, meaning I had to restore anyway and try to find my way back there.

The interface / movement of Future Wars + time limited platform section = not good

There are so many dead ends just beyond the edge of the screen, which is a really bitchy thing to do!

I finally managed to make my way to the computer room with two minutes and forty seconds left on the clock. There I used my magnetic card on the console and Albert II took over to reprogram the bomb detonation to be “a few million years before our era”. Once done, he told me to make my way to the hangar and use a first aid ship to escape. I figured the original doorway I’d found must lead to the hangar, but finding my way back there was a bitch. After a full hour had passed, I finally completed the maze section by reaching the hangar with about fifteen seconds on the clock. As Albert II had suggested, I hopped into a first aid ship and flew away from the station. “HURRAY! YOU’VE DONE IT!” Lo’Ann’s voice came over the intercom: “The doctors cured me as soon as I got back. I owe you my life for a second time.” After she’d finished thanking me, another voice took over: “BAILEY HERE... ORDER TO ALL VESSELS. RETURN TO THE ASSEMBLY POINT... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, LADS! CONGRATULATIONS FROM EARTH HIGH COMMAND. HIGH COMMAND HAS ALSO INFORMED US THAT THE SCORZUUM EXPLODED 65 MILLION YEARS AGO. THE MENACE, THE THREAT THAT HUNG OVER US, WILL SOON BE NOTHING MORE THAN A BAD MEMORY! EARTH IS SAVED! THE HUMAN RACE HAS WON ITS FIRST BATTLE! THREE CHEERS FOR OUR BRAVE HERO! HIP, HIP, HURRAY!”

Sure! Why don't you just finish the game for me!?

I'd bet my house that no-one ever got through this whole section without having to restore. Even after I knew what I was supposed to do, I still only made it with a handful of seconds left!

Over 2000 years from now, they still say hip, hip, hurray!

Rather predictably, I was then shown a view of the dinosaurs roaming the land in the Late Cretaceous Era, and was informed that I had contributed to their end. “How could they ever imagine that this morning, the Earth will turn a definitive page in its history and today will mark THE END OF THE REIGN OF THE DINOSAURS!!” The game closed with me staying in the 44th century with Lo’Ann. Humanity is reorganising itself, preparing itself for any future wars with the Crughons. Meanwhile, it appeared I got the girl, as the final scene had her and I standing on a platform high above a huge crowd of grateful people. So there you have it! Future Wars: An Adventure in Time is over. I’d had very high hopes for it prior to starting, and while some of those hopes were met, I have to say that the experience was not a particularly positive one. I'm still yet to play a French game on the list that I consider to be really good, but this one was the best attempt. It will be very interesting to see what PISSED rating the game scores in the next day or two. You'd think it would do better than Earthrise, but with different pros and cons, I'm not 100% sure. After that post is done,  it’s onto Les Manley: Search for the King, which is a game I have a very bad feeling about!

Way to make a guy feel bad about it!

Actually, while I have your attention. What is your name anyway!?

The mission clearly wasn't dangerous enough. Let's make them stand out on a small platform a hundred metres up!

Session Time: 1 hours 45 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 30 minutes



    Don't you think they could have mentioned that they didn't once succeed in a battle beforehand? Kinda feels a bit of a dick move to me!

    Congratulations. Now get ready to feel your already bruised and battered logic he turned on its head, rattled around and then turned into mush (recycled as peat moss et al.) On to Les Manley!

  2. Those side-view platforming bits are very similar to Flashback.

    1. Totally! You can tell that the same guy was behind both games. There was a huge improvement in movement between the two though.

  3. Yay, the two blandest characters in the whole universe get married. Now they can go and produce a whole new race of bland humans as their offspring.

  4. I finished Broken Age (Part 1) this weekend, and here is my review: (Full of spoilers, obviously!)

  5. Fifteen seconds? That's luxurious, I managed to do it with only one second left.

    This was a bit of a disappointment, I didn't remember it was this bad. But as the next game testifies, you can do even worse. Just keep thinking that there's only couple of games and you'll be enjoying Monkey Island!

    1. I'm seriously concerned about Les Manley. I really hope you guys hang around to help me out (or at least to laugh at me).

    2. Being the evil (not so) genius who decided to put you up to Les Manley, I'm virtually forced to sit through it. Don't worry though. It's as short as it is excruciating. If I recall correctly, there's a dead end within the first four screens (but then again there was also about five in the opening town of LSL2, and you navigated those well enough.)

  6. Ah! Two games finished and I'm still working through Circuit's Edge. Sorry, promise to finish this week, no matter how long it takes. Strangely, I have no idea how far I am in the story, or how much longer it'll be.

    That said, congratulations Trickster for putting another game in its place. I'm glad I was too busy to join, it sounds rather maddening what with the maze and controls.

  7. GOG has King's Quest 1-3 on sale at the moment.

    It's connected to IGN's "A Year of Adventure" articles, so I assume more GOG sales are to come as Kosta makes his way through the classics.

  8. Wow, that looked painful. Bleh.