Hi! I'll be backing the Kickstarter, but just wanted to drop my general impressions of the alpha.
* That first mission is *very* linear. I was kinda hoping for a little bit of play as far as dialogue options, investigating/examining surroundings, talking to people. Basically, I was hoping for much more flavor. The only things I could interact with were simply the items that progressed the story. Made it feel less like a point-and-click and more like an interactive novel. Some stuff I wanted to do:
- Examine the robot.
- Examine the books in the library. What books/art/displays be prominent in a Singapore library?
- Examine my office to get a sense of Amira's character.
- Examine the tree signage at the garden.
- Talk to the other people at the library, just for flavor or to see if they witnessed anything. What would people in Singapore be talking about in that situation?
* The decoding part was pretty tedious and that's where I spent most of my time in the demo. I think there can be a more interesting way of decoding the message, especially in a library. Even being provided a section of the Herodotus text would be cool. But just straight translating a block of numbers into letters wasn't fun.
* The ending was a little anti-climactic. Flying to London just to shoot a guy. We could've shot the guy at home. I think if we're gonna globetrot, it needs to add something to the story.
* There was a small line about that tree in the botanical garden and its history and connection to Singapore. I loved that a lot and hope to see more cultural/historical flavor text, as someone who's never been there. I'd love for Singapore to become a character all its own.
* Felt the lack of music and sound effects, though I assume those will come later.
* Someone else pointed it out, but I backed out of the library search dialogue to go look up the text and I couldn't access the computer again until I traveled somewhere else.
* You can walk up the sign near the tree at the botanical gardens.
* When you come back from the woman's apartment and return to the library, the exclamation mark over the library terminal is back.
The mission felt very bare bones, but the bones were *very* good. That opening cinematic was amazing and immediately got me hooked. The visuals are fantastic. The writing is entertaining and feels natural. Mei Ting got some genuine laughs out of me. And I love the idea of doing some investigation outside of the game.
Personal preference: the writing is strong enough as-is. If supplying voice acting for everything starts to eat at the budget, I'd say lose it. I think making the dialogues more interactive or just having more flavor text (or interior monologues) would compensate.
Also, that key art for the game is stunning! I'd buy a poster of it, honestly.
Anyway, best of luck with the rest of the development!