TSL - Cease and Desist
Started by KatieHal, October 30, 2012, 02:00:27 PM
QuoteA very good start of a series and candidate for adventure game of the yearPhoenix Online Studios' first episode The Hangman is both an achievement in mature storytelling and great puzzle design. It is the spiritual successor of the Gabriel Knight series, but with its own unique ideas. Even if it has some technical hiccups and the graphics are dated, it has more substance than many other "serious" adventure games of late. The game also sets a new standard of episodic content with a long playtime of at least 5-6 hours and unlike Telltale's The Walking Dead (which is without a doubt amazing in its own right, but less a game than a cinematic experience) demands a lot of cerebral thinking with its successful implementation of investigative work, cognition abilities and overall involvement in a believable game world.Rating: 9/10
QuoteI really enjoyed almost everything about Hangman. It is soaked with gloomy style, is gorgeous to look at and listen to, sets up its plot points with great precision, and takes off in the third act as it builds to a huge climax with a disquieting final shot that makes me genuinely eager to play the second episode. That's about the highest compliment you can pay to the first in an episodic series.
QuoteThe voice acting for Erica is provided by Raleigh Holmes ... She does an excellent job giving Erica some depth, going from between completely serious, to cracking jokes to herself, to then flirting with her coworkers, who all seem smitten with her. It's easy to play the part of "I'm an FBI agent who works alone and doesn't need anyone else ever" - it's much harder to pull off someone who actually DOES have feelings for someone else, but can't bring herself to think about it. Holmes pulls it off.
QuoteThe gameplay is fantastic and apart from the great music playing and the voice-acting, the 2D comic effect was superb. So if you like a game having a mixture of CSI and Gabriel Knight, do not hesitate to get a copy now and start investigating this great adventure. See you in Episode 2.
QuoteThe presentation of the game is beyond a doubt, the best aspect of Cognition. The comic book visuals are great and really add to the crime drama feel Phoenix Online went for.
QuoteThroughout the game, you will occasionally be subject to comic-book-like cutscenes. These are very well done, the artwork is excellent, as is the music and sounds that go with them. They are a joy to watch.
QuotePhoenix Online Studios shows that they're more than just a fangame company.....Story is where Cognition really shows its muscle. Character details are either out there in the open, or can be further explored through Erica's titular ability, which allows her to see into the past, untangle lost memories, or manifest a spiritual manifestations of those who have passed on. The game also features branching paths, which even this early in the game results in different outcomes.
Quote from: KatieHal on November 07, 2012, 07:12:25 AMIn this morning, Gamers.de (German) gives Cognition Episode 1 an 85/1000!
Quote from: snabbott on November 07, 2012, 09:42:30 AMQuote from: KatieHal on November 07, 2012, 07:12:25 AMIn this morning, Gamers.de (German) gives Cognition Episode 1 an 85/1000!*Ahem* That's 85/100. 85/1000 would be very sad.
QuoteThree things in particular make Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller – Episode 1: The Hangman stand out. Firstly, Erica Reed is voiced to perfection (with an authentic Bostonian twang) by Raleigh Holmes, daughter of Robert Holmes, aka Jane Jensen's husband. It's an exceptional performance that encompasses a gamut of emotions including grief, anger and sheer determination. Secondly, the soundtrack by Austin Haynes is scene-perfect every step of the way and the song 'The Taking' (featuring Raleigh Holmes on vocals) should win video game song of the year, hands down. Thirdly, César Bittar (with a little help from his friend Jane Jensen) and the folks at Phoenix Online Studios have crafted a story that is genuinely involving and extremely emotional. For their first commercial outing, all of these factors add up to a truly incredible achievement.
QuoteRATING 4/5 - Whenever I see the word "Thriller" in a title of move or game, I tend to be a little hesitant. That is how I prejudged Erica Reed and I made a big mistake. This game actually is quite intense and thrilling. That is rare for me as I play so many games of varying quality, I have become a bit jaded when it comes to point and click. Not the case here, as this is a solid adventure in both writing, a unique graphic style, great puzzles and a burning intensity. My favorite part about playing smaller releases and indie games is finding talent that is so apparent here. The point and click adventure revolution is alive and well with Erica Reed riding this wave very high. Available on Steam right now, you should definitely check it out if you have any interest at all in the adventure genre.
QuoteOverall I had a pleasing experience with Cognition. Players get to make choices on how the story unfolds. That's a huge plus in my book and certainly adds to the replay value. ... I'm curious to see how Erica will handle herself after what took place in the final moments of episode one.
QuoteIt's incredible to think that such an ambitious adventure game was developed by such a small team. They go so far as to include some decent to excellent samples of voice acting, on part with most multi-million dollar games. This premiere chapter shows plenty of potential, giving us reason to expect the next three parts to be even better. If you enjoy adventure games with a gripping story and great art, Cognition is shaping up to be a fantastic option.