Retired Wiihacks Staff
Is this Japanese Survival Horror an Epic Win or an Epic Fail.
Anybody who has ever seen The Grudge or The Ring will immediately notice the resemblance between the movies and this game. Itís your typical Japanese Horror story complete with freaky hair, spooky Japanese dolls, ghosts, and of course an evil pale girl that kills people.. The game begins with a some people chatting away in this website called "The Black Page" when suddenly the receive a strange phone call that transports them into an alternate plane of existence called the "Mnemonic Abyss". The game follows the story of 4 people stuck in this creepy dimension and you will play each one at different times during the game as they try to escape this dark hellish place. Sounds scary right? well it is, for a little while at least. I played this game late at night with the lights off and it spooked me quite a few times. Unfortunately it deploys all its scare tactics within the first hour or so and quickly loses a lot of its eeriness thereafter, there is the occasional little spine tingling moment but for the most part the fear is gone which leaves you with mindless exploration as you walk around looking for clues and solving fairly easy puzzles. It wouldn't be such a bad thing if there was a lot to explore but after opening a few cupboards and lockers and such, you quickly realize that they are all the same. Most of the rooms look the same and the environment is pretty repetitive and bare, the fact that the games is pretty much always dark help camouflage this.
The game play is pretty good, for the most part. The controls work pretty much like Silent Hill Shattered Memories. You use the nunchuck to move forward, backwards, and side to side. Point the wiimote to look around. Use the A button to interact with stuff. Simple, but it works and works well. The game also uses the wiimote like a cellphone, and the cellphone is a pretty integral part of the game. I have to admit that it is very well implemented and that it added an extra level of interactivity with the game and you use it for just about everything. You make and receive calls from both the living and the dead. The sound come from the wiimote speaker which makes the ghost s sound even creepier. You use it to snap pictures, record ghostly voices, and even to teleport from one area to the next or should I say from a phone in one area to the one in another by calling their respective numbers. There are cellphones everywhere in this game. The ghost encounters, sad to say, are a different story. When you get attacked a heart monitor appears, you have to waggle you wiimote and press A at the right times to push your attacker away before your heart rate (fear gauge) reaches its maximum . Lame lame lame lame, I donít know how else to put it. Looks like the designers ran out of good ideas.
The graphics and sound are good. Everything thing is nicely drawn and the character voices sound good even though some of the dialogue leaves a little to be desired. The little ghostly effects in window reflections and shadows and the little sound effects like far off knocks and closing doors and water drops etc really add to the atmosphere of the whole game. The only drawback, like I mention earlier, is the lack of detail in the Abyss. It would have been nice to be able to interact with more stuff. I opened dozens and dozens of drawers and cabinets and lockers expecting to maybe find something new only to be disappointed over and over again. As you explore the rooms in the various locations you keep coming across the same ornaments, bags, boxes, books, tables, lamps, you get the picture. There are a few exceptions but overall the scenery is quite repetitive which helps this game get boring fast.
So here is my conclusion. Although the graphics are nice and some of the game play mechanics like the cell phone are interesting, the lack of detail in the scenery and the stupid wiimote waggle in the ghost encounters totally ruined it for me. The scare factor fades fairly quickly and leaves you with not much to replace it with due to the environment being so bare. Itís too bad cause that's why I like to play these kinds of games and this one had so much potential It just goes to prove that a good story cannot save a poorly made game. I give Calling an Epic Fail.
Baboo77ís Fail/ Win Scale
Cosmic Fail, Legendary Fail, Epic Fail, Fail, Win, Epic Win, Legendary Win, Cosmic Win
Last edited by Baboo77; 04-22-2010 at 08:29 PM.
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Same here Epic Fail i returned it 5 days after i bought it(it was for my sis)
I found the game fun to play, but if you find somebody that don't like scary thing its fun to watch them freak out
Not really a fan of this genre of games and after watching some gameplay videos, I have to say this looks really boring for a horror game.
Good one to avoid it seems...