So there hasn’t been much by the way of games on Kickstarter lately. Something about a skeleton dating sim which makes about as much sense as a dating sim taking place on a tree farm where every tree looks only slightly more identical than the last. There was also some god awful mess that looked like someone mashed together multiple popular PC games over the last few years, stealing primarily from DayZ and tried to pass it off as original. Far be it for me to criticize other people’s art when I draw like an apoplectic rag doll but here we are. Not only that but the ones I hyped most recently aren’t doing so hot; which figures when I back something I have genuine interest in it just dies on the vine. A couple of newer projects have caught my attention though; primarily a visual novel called A More Beautiful World.
I enjoy visual novels, a genre that doesn’t get much attention outside of Japan. However, just like with Narcissu I fail to see A More Beautiful World as a game. In the demo I played there was no choices or any kind of interaction whatsoever; like a video or digital comic you can just set it to auto and watch with no further interference. That doesn’t immediately dismiss it but at the same time it severely limits how it can define itself as a game. Like with Narcissu without any sort of gameplay you have to rely entirely on visuals and story.
So how does it look? While I enjoy the background art the character art has a great deal to be desired. The female characters were decent for the most part but for whatever reason the male characters all looked like something I would design and then hate myself for doing so. The CG provided in the demo was also fairly bad but for the life of me I can’t pinpoint why. Voice acting all around was sub-par and sounded more like the new guys first attempt while no one is looking. There was little emotion and it made the entire thing feel hollow. Background music on the other hand was good and really conveyed emotion but it was so damn load! No matter how I tried to adjust my headset the background music just overpowered the dialogue way too much and I had to rely on subtitles to figure out what was happening.
The plot, which seems to be the main focus of this game is… sporadic. The title of the game alone kind of sums up everything that will happen up to the end and everything else is so much filler. The wandering witch travels a world that had forgotten her kind, even though they are practically neighbors apparently, helping those fated to meet her; now say it with me ‘in order to make a more beautiful world’. There is also something about a political war and how magicians are high society dicks and I don’t know. The story needs a lot of cleaning up because it felt like it jumped around an awful lot to me with little focus beyond moving forward for little to no reason; at which point fate steps in and tells them how to get shit done. It doesn’t seem like there is a point to getting invested into any character besides the wandering witch because everyone else just comes and goes. I’m all for the intelligent plot with a semi historical backdrop but at this point it could be any historical context from a European view point.
I don’t know, it is kind of interesting but not the kind I would drop money on. They mention in the project specs that they plan to upgrade everything, especially the visuals and I hope that is true. This game could be at least mildly interesting but there is a lot still to be done. I fear they may be over estimating the amount of content they have. They state the demo is 60% of part one and should take upwards of 80 minutes. I beat it in roughly half that time by just letting it run on auto play. They claim parts three and four will be considerably longer but how much is that really?