(EGD) Φανταστείτε να σπαταλάτε το χρόνο σας μεταφράζοντας αυτό

Review by beast4321 on Sunday, August 16th 2020
Click to play The Golden Fleece

The Golden Fleece is a game created by ethan2009

Καλημέρα, peeps, back to review another game. Tears will be shed, harsh words exchanged. Or will they? For today I have my sights on a game created by an individual who is only eleven years old, and who, coincidentally, goes by the suspiciously average name of Ethan. Who apparently, one sunny morning, woke up and decided that combining Jack and the Beanstalk with Greek Mythology was a good idea. You know, as you do.

This game has a pretty cool storyline, albeit slightly rushed. The bean stalk is dying and the only way to save it is through finding the fabled golden fleece. No development, no emotion, not even an introduction to the character; you know, the usual drivel seen on almost every Sploder game ever. Still, credit where it's due, it's a unique plot line, and the inclusion of a number of myths and fairy tales just sorta works, as long as you're familiar with the folklore this game is based on. And the entire game does feel very Greek; the use of graphics and the slightly silly plot as our nameless, underdeveloped protagonist journeys through lands to find the Golden Fleece, gave it a nice, Mediterranean feel. It's not going to bring tears to your eyes, but it gets the job down. I would've liked a bit more build up; the dragon level in particular, while an astonishing creation, felt a little too sudden for an epic showdown, and I would've appreciated a bit of tension before I got there. Not a big issue though. Overall, it's pretty good.

This was a largely action based RPG, which main appeal was taking on a number of powerful enemies, such as Thors and George's, but in an area which, if used correctly, gave the player a real edge. Quite often, a clever system of perm switches and teleporters trapped the player in an arena, forcing them to engage in combat with a variety of enemies appearing from teleporters above. This is something that's been done before, particularly by Gaminator, but never on this scale, so I can appreciate the effort and it's pretty unreasonable for the consumer to demand constant new concepts anyhow. At other times, one would be forced to clear an area before breaking sandblocks to hit a switch, or else take heavy damage. These must've taken a horrendous amount of testing to get right, and I can really appreciate it, especially as the majority of other action sequences in this game were relatively easy to skip without combat. At other times, platforms were placed in such a manner that if you used them correctly, you could stun opponents, rain blows on them, then retreat and repeat. I was particularly fond of the inclusion of the George, one of my favourite AI's; it has a powerful but slow attack, so with right timings, it's possible to land heavy damage on it and be gone before it can strike back. I also very much enjoyed backflipping into Rockies, dealing vast damage and taking little in return, like some sort of armoured, Greek super hero. It was scenes like that were very cathartic, and, while nothing special, good fun. The inclusion of a riddle I was most amused by, which is something I've seen before, but a combination of graphics, gears, and scenery good enough to bring tears to the eye, made this one particularly smooth. Through combining these various features in various ways, Ethan manages to make the gameplay come off as fresh, and although ideas were often repeated, they never became dull.

Difficulty was also handled admirably well; the first few levels felt like Ethan had applied powerups with a large brush ladened with unthinned paint (remember kids, two thin coats,) but as the game went on, this very rapidly ceased to be the case, and the difficult ramped up, but never excessively. Overall the gameplay was very impressive.

Placement varied. At times, enemies were placed very cleverly, so the player could use strategy to overcome them. At other times, it came off slightly lazy. It was possible multiple times, where enemies where placed poorly, to stun them and take them down without taking any damage in return. I was particularly amused to see a number of enemies in the dragons stomach, perish in lava without me having to raise a finger. Asides from that, it was pretty good; the arena style play must've required a lot of careful placement and testing, and although I couldn't see it, it all ran smoothly, so it must've worked. Level design was alright, perhaps more complicated than it should've been; I found myself occasionally confused by a rapidly growing assortment of platforms and areas. The main perpetrator of this being level one, but I never actually was lost, I just left like I should be. It didn't happen again so I won't make an issue of it. So again, pretty impressive, although less so than the previous paragraph.

Scenery... I swear, I could've married the screen. Ethan has gone to the effort of making a series of graphics for this game, and it's clear that he spent an arguably insane quantity of time on them. As someone who can never be bothered to do this, I have a great respect for the effort he put in. There were palm trees and vines, mountains, dusted in ice, oceans, rocks, clouds; everything looked absolutely incredible, and really set that Mediterranean feel. There were times, sprinting over platforms of clouds, fighting through desert temples, that I generally did feel like a professional company had made this. And the dragon graphic... an absolutely vast, beautifully detailed head, complete with piles of gold, which I only saw for a moment before invisible gears whisked me away. It genuinely was astounding. I have a few minor gripes; the graphiced tresses occasionally made it hard to see what I were doing, and at times it was difficult to tell what was a ladder and what wasn't, what was scenery and what was not. But to Ethan's credit, he always attempted to distinguish them, if not always intuitively. The only real problem I have was that I wasn't entirely happy with the choice of music. It rather set the wrong mood for me. Worst offender was the level set in the mountains, complete with a an overly dramatic, slightly off soundtrack, Harjaki for those curious. Didn't work for me. Again, a minor issue.

Now, my favourite part of the review; I pull a half dozen numbers from thin air and attempt to convince you they're vaguely meaningful.

Story; ___.5/_____:
Gameplay; ____.5/_____:
Placement; ____/_____:
Scenery; ____.5/_____:

Overall; ____.25/_____:

Really I should be ashamed, as a reviewer, to dish out such a high score. But I struggled to find problems with the Golden Fleece. It's a beautiful game; aesthetically incredible, in terms of gameplay, better than average. Both have been done before; Jade, with it's lacking gameplay and beautiful scenery, springs to mind; anything by Gaminator for the gameplay. But what one doesn't see often, is a combination of the two and polished to perfection. Was it the best action sequences on Sploder that Ethan promised? Well, not really. Did it shatter my world? No. But it didn't need to.

Feature worthy? Heck yeah. And when the squirrel that's secretly in charge of EGD featuring pulls Ethan's out the hat, I have no doubt we'll see this game somewhere up there. I can't wait to play it again when it is.


The Golden Fleece Reviewed by beast4321 on Sunday, August 16th 2020. (EGD) Φανταστείτε να σπαταλάτε το χρόνο σας μεταφράζοντας αυτό - A game review written by beast4321 for the game 'The Golden Fleece' by ethan2009. Rating: 5