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Reviews for "Thoughtform"

Dull and unengaging. Lacks the whimsy or sheer creepiness of similar games, like Limbo.

The mixture of both keyboard and mouse for such a simple game is pointless and tedious. I had to keep moving my cursor to the screen, then move it back so I could look at the environment unimpeded. Configure it so that either X, Z or Space continues the conversation, like a regular RPG.

Also, it would do good to tell the player what the controls are in the first place. Call me stupid, but I could not figure out what I was supposed to do as far as controls go, besides using the arrow keys. There's really no indication that anything can be interacted with.

The music is lovely albeit repetitive, but the art lacks soul. Take a note from the game Journey by thatgamecompany, and study how they injected pure spirituality and sense of awe into the art and controls.

I'm digging the near anonymity of the characters, but it'd be nice if some sign of life was apparent in the setting. The tire swing swaying in the wind, for example. Tree leaves rustling slightly in the breeze. Clouds sweeping across the sky. And so on.

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Game is very artistic and deep, though boring due to the lack of music and constant walking on a flat surface. Need the music to be a little higher so the play with no music has more significance and needs different terrain to maybe add a little more to that "surreal" feel.

The [problem with this generation is ADHD, people don't have the patience to sit through a game like this,BUT people like me whom do not suffer from the ADHD mental illness did in FACT think this game was very engaging, very artistic, very dark erry feel to it, i have to say i was relaxed and felt like i was solving a puzzle!! Will i play it again? Maybe , Maybe not, I did end up getting the sad ending and was not able to save the mother, so perhaps i will try for the other ending but when i have time... An issue i had was that it was not that original, therefor i give it a 3

I wasn't really sure if I should submit a review, it would pretty much be echoing what everyone else is saying. However, here are a few suggestions I think would improve the playing experience for this game/your next game:

1) Add some more detail to the game - a great part of art games is the gorgeous design both in character and scene. Aside from the spectacularly trippy scene that follows when you first make it all the way through the house (which I very much enjoyed) the backgrounds were very repetitive and weren't much to look at. As some players have pointed out, you have a lot of back-and-forth in your game, so it would be a nice touch to add some more artistic elements or possibly hidden secrets to the scenes we keep passing back and forth. The Daymare Town games are a perfect example of this. With art games, the more unique the game, the better; the more ubiquitous, the more you're gonna get people telling you it's an imitation of Coma.

2) Emphasize the message - The other key part of art games is that they are less of a 'game' game with goals/achievements and more of an experience which is supposed to make you feel something, or give you a takeaway message. I mostly got confusion and boredom from this game, which is not the effect I think you were trying for. I know it's popular in art games to be abstract and subtle, but these are not the same things as having a confusing and muddled storyline. This can also be done by accident - what may seem clear to you may not be clear to those who play your game. It might help to make the moral/point of the story clearer so more people can enjoy it. On that note...

3) Better clarify the motives and voices of the characters - I was actually confused right from the beginning as there were two voices speaking and only one character in sight; this 'second character' was later never referenced, unless it was supposed to be the bird. Or the eyeball, which had no relation to the story as far as I could tell. A lot of random characters popped up with no real substance to them aside from us knowing they were shadowy and weird looking, and no established relation to the main character. I didn't care about reuniting the eyeball with the pointy sky thing, and the plot gave me no reason to. Every element in your game can and should be used to involve and captivate the player, and imho this game fell short of that. Including..

4) Utilize the music - As other users have pointed out, the background music gets repetitive quickly. You can use the music as a tool in art games (and all games really) to set the tone of the emotional scenes and really drive home the message.

5) Cut down on the repetitiveness - It took me a long time to figure out A) what to do with the lights in the house and B) what the order was. It didn't help that making one wrong step reset the whole thing. I almost ragequit but then I cheated and checked the comments (thank you BlueSpeed7). There was no sign that the 5 and 3 should be turned on before the 1, and it would have taken me even longer to figure that out. Games wherein challenges are reset after only 1 mistake are notoriously hated. I personally would recommend involving those in any further games (unless the point was to frustrate people, and hey, it's an art game, it could happen!). I also found that the falling scenes made me nauseous, but that could be just me.

I think this is a good start and you seem to have some good ideas in there, you just need to uncover them more and integrate all pieces of the game into getting your ideas across. Hope this helps!

And a note to those having trouble when you get to the point where you control the bird: It does get a little screwy, but it's not broken. You are actually supposed to fall through the floor. Try taking a dip into the lava and see what happens :)