I’m really lazy, but I made an account to write this 'cause you guys are that great.
This demo is so ridiculously huge and expertly written it made me feel guilty for being able to have so much fun without buying it. I don’t understand how it doesn’t have more attention, but I’m certain this’ll become one of CoG’s most successful story games if it gets completed. Everything is a pleasure to read, from compelling dialogue and distinct character voices to exciting combat/action scenes to vivid descriptions that are evocative without going overboard. All that said, specifics; (may be off base about some things because I completed the demo like a month ago)
(And so, yeah, there will be spoilers from here on)
Text wall incoming
I think we should’ve had one more addition to our gang after the magic ritual meeting, one of the boat people (drawing a blank but you get me, the ones who aren’t us). Apart from giving us another companion to enjoy, this would make the choice of allegiance more difficult/interesting, imo. Maybe this is planned already? At this point, all of your friends except Cormac favor the Empire iirc
I feel like we haven’t seen as much of Izzy as the other four so far, so I hope for more from her later (I know the next thing is her personal quest, excited for that!). Maybe consider adding a scene or two with her involved somehow to the already written chapters?
And that’s all I can think of. Praise:
Like I said above, the writing in general is top quality, like a published book.
I was happy to see so many options for fleshing out your character, and all the wonderful stat tracking going on. The plethora of combinations to choose from stat distribution to humorous/serious disposition to diplomatic/aggressive negotiating style can make for several distinctive and unique MCs for a fresh experience. (I’m looking forward to doing both a sarcastic hawkeish and a ruthless badass playthrough).
I was also pleasantly surprised by the different ways you can succeed in combat. I really enjoyed using the intelligence stat to outthink whoever it was I was fighting (didn’t expect tactics from a viking dude, did you, huge guy I killed in one awesome maneuver?) I saw an option I can’t wait to try, in the duel with huge guy’s sister, to throw her off with insults; I hope there’s more opportunities like that later. Intimidation too. That fight was epic. I just remembered a nitpick I had: I wish our friends had reacted to that fight!
The interludes, the quiet and reflective moments with the crew, are probably most of my favorite parts of the story. They’re all so well-characterized and interesting, it’s the most fun to be had in the game to get to know them better. I want you guys to have an interlude between every single chapter, including those written already. Okay? Okay! (If not okay, I can be placated by more scenes like the card/dice game bit, where everyone’s hanging out together).
The plot is engaging; reform your people’s ways or stick to tradition in an unfamiliar world. I can’t wait to see how it all turns out, and I’m also intrigued by our father and his background, hope we learn more about him. The part about his last memory being that of Roise was great. It feels almost like an obligation in a story, but I hope Roise doesn’t die! Maybe she can retire instead?
Every ‘companion’ has an intriguing and nuanced backstory that they don’t just regurgitate right away. As I learn more about them, their personalities become more and more fitting, and I enjoy them that much more. more more more
Also, I like that both factions have good and bad points, so neither side is really the ‘right’ one, and they each have merits and downsides. Along with going it alone, there are many interesting directions to explore in the future!
No, this isn’t quite long enough yet. On the main cast:
Isadora Cimber: Cool name! I like her, and I can’t wait to find out more about her and her criminal background. I liked the scene where she opens up a bit about her past and her history with the noble dude; it’s great to play a paragon Shepard type and be all “you don’t have to tell me your painful backstory if you don’t want” while totally expecting them to spill, and they don’t disappoint! I love shows of trust toward MC (if they deserve it!)
Speaking of, Panegyris: How’s that pronounced? PAN-eh-JER-is? Anyway, they had a similar great moment on boat people island, that was fun. I’m really fond of this character and their lighthearted bantering; there are fun dynamics to be had with the MC whether you’re humorous (mutual exchange of banter!) or stoic (teasing an overly serious MC). I wish I could recall specific moments I enjoyed, but it’s been a while and I haven’t had time to replay yet. I will say I grew to keenly look forward to conversations with Pan, who is written with exceptional wit and charm. I eagerly await another game of Castulian chess.
Cormac: The open-minded bro who’s got your back, whether he agrees with you or not. I love that you can present a series of arguments over time to change his opinion on the direction of the clan. The Bioware influences were so clear throughout this game, and it’s fantastic.
Sangarinus: This guy is pretty mysterious and intriguing so far. I do wonder about his background, his experiences in that secret agent training camp. The way he’s written in conversation made me give him Fenris’s voice from Dragon Age 2 in my head. The sparring scene with him and MC was a fun read, and the little detail of his nearsightedness is a pretty cool addition. The scene where he, in his own subdued way, stands up to his aunt in on my behalf was awesome.
Aisling: Best for last! I’m drawn to sweet and isolated characters like her, and I love the writing for her. She’s adorable. I look forward to improving her position in the clan, maybe helping them get over their fear of magic; we haven’t seen magic go wrong yet! I really felt for her at the beach dance party where people avoided her like the plague. Her practicing magic with Pan made me smile, it was great, and that wasn’t even the best part of that scene! She let me read her freaking diary! I pursued her romance as a serious MC, and the entry she wrote about MC was incredibly heartwarming. That scene is what sticks out in my memory the most, my number one favorite moment so far.
This has been too long already, so I’ll just say again I love everything about this, and I’m endlessly excited to buy the finished product. Thank you guys!