My roommate and I have been looking forward to playing this since PAX East. I went back several times to try and figure out the puzzle. I wanted that pre-Alpha key so badly! I eventually had to get my roommate send me what was basically a walkthrough via text message. She is much better at this kind of thing than I am. The game really appealed to me as someone who enjoyed Bioshock but is a total whip and never finished it. It has that survival, scavenging feel without the visuals being so incredibly dark and dreary. The "Everyone is happy... OR ELSE!" aesthetic is definitely more appealing to me.
The past few weeks have been really busy at our house and we haven't had the opportunity to sit down and play since the PAX build was released. On Sunday, surrounded by some friends who we had been raving about the game to for months, we finally sat down to do a bit of exploring. Because there were four of us jammed into one small living room, we hooked up my computer to the TV and played with a xbox controller. Apparently, this was a mistake! But it was kind of fun so see how long we could survive without many of the actions that are available on the keyboard. We didn't get very far, but we were mostly just exploring. Seeing what there was to see, eating rotten fruit we found in piles of rubble, seeing how many people we could piss off before they overtook us and beat us into the ground, that kind of thing. It was a lot of fun!
We took a few notes while we were playing. It's likely that most of them are symptoms of it being a pre-alpha build, but I figured I'd share with you anyway!
While playing with the xbox controller, there wasn't a placard at he beginning showing what the buttons do. We died three or four times before we figured out how to open the inventory. On a xbox controller, it's the 'back' button, fyi. I don't know how we missed trying out that one. I guess it's one of those small ones you tend to forget about.
When one of my friends talked me into seeing if I could survive a jump off the bridge, I quickly discovered that I could not. Hitting the water was like hitting a brick wall. SPLAT!! Presumably because water physics for the river haven't been implemented yet. It did elicit a very funny "OOOOOO!!!" from the entire room, though. Worth it.
Taking out a branch to use as a weapon caused a metallic kind of sound to trigger. For some reason, we also found this to be very funny. At least one of us would giggle every time it happened. We're adults, I swear. We have adult jobs and pay our bills and everything.
One thing we really didn't like was the flashing red on the edges of the screen when we were on low health. It was downright painful to watch. Maybe slow it down to a kind of pulsing? Or maybe just have it be a solid red fade, without any flashing at all.
We did have one crash, unfortunately. We were on one of the bridges and were being swarmed by people yelling at us to stop being a Downer. It crashed before they could kill us. I'm just going to go ahead and count that as us getting away. SUCK IT, JERKS!
All in all, we had a ton of fun. I'm very much looking forward to getting to explore a bit on my own.