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Mod review - 1 agrees - 1 disagrees

This mod made it really difficult for me to rate. 8.5 would be better but ModDB doesn't support such a score. I swayed between 8 and 9 but went for 8 because of this "feeling" I got, a feeling that something is off, something stands in the way of a "wow" experience.

This mod is rather unique for which it deserves praise. The idea of the mermaid mechanics is refreshing and so are in general the various puzzles included which often are not so easy to see the first time. The graphics idea with the above and below water is a nice touch. Although the story is somewhat convoluted the flash-backs in the 2D children book type cut scenes are an interesting idea done well. The difficulty is just right.

Minus points I had though to give for the controls and user interface. The 3rd person control yields troubles at times making it difficult to interact the way you want. Some influence mini-games are quite frustrating as sometimes the controls don't do what is written on the manual. For example when you have to deal with the traffic signs you can turn the sign but for some reason it is ignored and placed always the same way. You have to figure out how to move properly to trick the controls into doing what you need to solve the puzzle. The conversation interface also is counter-intuitive to use. Using the mouse wheel (hence next/previous weapon command) to select the item would have been better. Also the face animations look quite off. Now I don't know if this has been intended or not so I give the mod the benefit of the doubt. I don't really like it as it looks like Garry's Mod posing.

Overall it's a mod that I recommend to play and being it only for experiencing something different. This mod could use some polishing but otherwise it's an interesting experience albeit a bit a short one but that's why it's called short stories after all.


Nightmare House 2

Mod review - 4 agree - 4 disagree

It's a bit difficult to talk about the mod without any spoilers in it so let's try.

The mod comes along with the premise of a "horror" mod. When it gets down to horror there seem to be two different camps at work. One is the original (or what I consider the real) horror camp which works with tension, the unknown, the surprise, and the suspense of what happens next. You work with the not obvious and trying to play with the viewers mind in a subtle way. This creates the motions one looks for. The other camp seems to be the Doom3 camp where everything is obvious, lots of flickering lits for no reason, split second "ghosts" which only hurt the eyes than having any other effect than being annoying and walking past zombies on the ground knowing exactly they stand up when you try to open a door. This mod falls into the second camp. If you are into true horror you will be disappointed, if Doom3 is your taste then you like it.

Now to the rest of the mod besides the weak horror part. Controls in general are well if there would not be this annoying head-bob which makes you plain sick. Lucky me the straight-running sections are few and far in between so the negative effect stays to a minimum. Good is the change from slower paced over no-light sequence to the group section. The story is solid while having a bunch of flaws like the girl being rather unexplained or you leading the group as they don't know where the exit is but in the end they suddenly lead you saying "i know where the exit is". What? Didn't you just say?... Never mind. Boss fight is done nicely although it took me some time to get the last step (obvious and not obvious at the same time). There's too much ammo but most probably because of the zombie shooting sequence.

All in all a polished mod with a solid story and a decent play time. Minus points for few plot holes, failing at horror and the annoying camera. In general I had a good time playing it. 8.5 if this would be possible.

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