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Deadly Premonition Day#2: Very Doubtful

Day 2 and this game is just fascinatingly terrible. I literally can’t remember when I’ve played a game with this many bad design decisions. The male characters are all ugly, and all of the controls from the basic move to the newly-introduced driving which is truly awful. I do not understand how people like this game. Even in town past the deeply broken prologue, the game just makes the wrong choice every chance it gets. Spoilers within.

I begin again at the payphone on the wooden pier, and omg I’m already despising the controls again. You really need to see some video of this game to understand how the music and art could be SO PAINFUL. There’s a CS of a street light going out and door locking behind me. There’s another attack from a white back-broken zombie and OMG the combat controls suck. You should never have this much trouble turning your character. I don’t like being freaked out because I CAN’T PROPERLY FACE THE FUCKING ENEMY. It’s easy to defeat once I can aim at it. I walk more, and wait…is that actually a CRATE? I guess I shouldn’t be surprised given how archaic this game is. I break it, but there’s nothing inside. I arrive at a fork in the pier and map up ahead.  Observing the map tells me nothing. On a whim, I take a right and follow the hallway to find lots of enemies to shoot. I’ll give the game that the enemies’ voices are pretty creepy. I kill all of the enemies and get to a shack.

Inside, I find a broken generator. It’s another clue  for me to collect, and York says the killer hit it with an axe. I hit the profile button on command to get my random image flash for nothing. York wants us to fix the generator and takes some fuses out of it. I go to the next shack on the other side of this plaza, and when I enter, an enemy attacks me from nowhere. I kill it, and then see a generator missing a fuse.  I think I’ve got this one. I click to turn the generator on and see a menu of empty item slots with one containing the fuse box I took.  I click on the fuses to put them in and turn the generator on.  It’s on and just like before, it opens a new gate. There are two more enemies I kill getting to the gate, and two more enemies to kill while passing through the gate. This leads to an open area with enemy spawners on both sides. As I walk out into the circle, an enemy approaches from either side and a new one pops up once the old one is dead. I go down quickly.  I respawn back a little ways and die again. The third time, I get past that fight by staying out of the center of the circle, which reduces the number of enemies spawning to just the one on my side. I get past the circle  to a CS of a guy in red with a blade. There’s a qte where I have to dodge his attacks. It’s quite fast so I miss them and  die there.

Not to fail to screw something else up, the game respawns me to before the fight in the circle. I die one more time and I’m literally about to quit. This game is just so bad, and having to redo this awful fight to go to the ridiculous boss with these terrible controls is almost more than I can bear. But I remember that I promised two sessions, so I focus through one last respawn and get through it. When I get to the guy in red, I still miss the first qte but get the second and that’s enough to keep me alive. I find a door partially covered with red ivy. It’s not totally covered yet, but I guess the red ivy blocks stuff, or at least York says that.  I go through the door and then vines cover it. Red ivy is apparently the last clue, and I automatically profile with no input from me. There’s a flash of images and we go back to a CS of York. He says that coffee gave him a sign — that the milk in the coffee said he would arrive in a place that would change his fate. I  get control back with a stupid camera shot through the red vines of the door, made an ugly transparent filter so that I can see myself. I run ahead and reach a phone by a large road out of the woods. I pick up the phone to save, and there’s only one save slot. Wow. What DOESN’T this game fuck up? I overwrite my old save to continue.

Now, I have a map in the lower left with a red marker on it. A big sign in front of me says I’m in Greenvale. When I examine it, York tells Zack that they are here. I start running down the road to the target. The stupid footsteps are mistimed to my steps, so that they make it sound like something else is running with me. Every single thing about this game is bad. Every. Single. Thing. I cut to a CS about halfway to the target. Emily Wyatt gets out of a car and tells York he’s late. York introduces himself, and she reveals she’s the deputy sheriff. She says the sheriff is looking for York. As they talk, there are all these weird camera zooms on the two of them and the background.  She asks him if he walked and he says his car broke down. That answer prompts a long uncanny and inappropriate stare. York says to Zack in an aside that she’s pretty. George the sheriff then walks up. He asks why the FBI is here to investigate a local crime.  York says that he’s interested in profiling data. George says that he’s taking care of the problems.  Interestingly all the male characters in this game look pretty creepy terrible, but the female cop looks pretty good. George says that the locals will handle the investigation and York can rest. The sheriff also gives a cryptic line about not having to be a tree worshipper to like it here. York tells Zack that the townspeople aren’t cavemen — it’s the middle ages and they’ve met the king.  It’s clearly the end of the scene as they drive off. I get a stat sheet with time and days passed, enemies defeated, and number of continues used (or player deaths to be blunt). I earn some money and auto-save. Maybe the game will get better after the prologue. Moving on…

And then there’s a recap of what I just did. Seriously, another game with scene review?!? ARE YOU KIDDING?!?  Why do games think this is a good idea? Why? Sigh. We restart back in the red dream room. I find a card for one of the angels — Isaac-something.  A door opens this time, and I enter it to find a red leaf strewn outdoor corridor. After a short walk, we cut to a CS of a kid yelling for York from behind. York stares at the kid as a zombie guy appears further down the corridor. The kid says to hold your breath because the monsters sense breathing. It’s  LT to hold breath and I walk past thing while holding it. When I reach the monster, there’s a long pointless holding of breath as we stay right next to the monster and it leans towards us. This is supposed to be scary, having the monster that close, but I’ve killed dozens of these things and all I have to do here is hold down the left trigger. That stupid scene ends and we CS get to the door. York asks the kid who he is, but the kid just opens the door.

York wakes up in HUGE bed. He gets up and then describes his dream to Zack. He’s worried about the child  because he remembers him from somewhere. I get control, and York wants me to get coffee. In my hotel room, I can change suits and shave. (Oh, this IS Heavy Rain.) I earn money for that shave, thank you very much. I go to leave the room and the controls are so sluggish to open these doors. I walk to the cafeteria and it’s a CS as I go in. There’s an old woman here named Polly Oxford. She moves exactly like the monsters do — SO DUMB. After a brief pointless conversation, we cut to a CS of York and Polly eating at a  super long table. I have a qte to complement her when she fishes for it. The music here is SO DUMB. They converse but she often  mishears him. I imagine this is supposed to be funny, but no. THIS IS PAINFUL. It’s just a string of  all of  these dumb jokes. I do get chance to ask her about the town, so I take it. She says there’s lots of nature, but the town’s losing people to departures. She mentions the clock on the community center.  I choose to ask about the stores and get some basic info.  We cut to a CS York with coffee. He pours milk in the coffee, and I have to hit A to observe it closely (that is literally what the game offers). He sees F K in the cup, or so he says with a creepy smile.

I get control and decide unintentionally drink another cup of coffee when I action at a vending machine. I  get a tip from the coffee to watch out and to take a light. I do it again because that’s the only option I’m given when the first coffee divination ends. This time, it’s  something about a theme park. I don’t do it again by clicking a button that’s not indicated to me to exit. I’m back in control and leave the hotel. As I do, I get a results screen for the day.  Why? I haven’t done anything yet. There’s a CS outside the hotel where York sees a police car with a key on the hood and note about the sheriff’s office.  York CS complements the town’s values for not stealing the car even though the keys were on the hood.  York gets in the car, and OMFG I get a control scheme for driving and literally EVERY button does something. Let me illustrate: the wipers are on the d-pad (on and off are separate button presses) and there are signal buttons (right and left are separate) and there’s also a side brake (?) button. And of course driving is so awful. The car jerks into the other lane seemingly of its own accord and I can’t see anything while driving because of the position of the car frame. I eventually get to the sheriff’s office and a green circle in front indicates where to stop. York will go elsewhere if I want to do something else first, but I don’t so I go to a green circle at the front door to the station. York admires the woodwork and then he CS enters and the game loads. Inside, there’s a CS as York meets a totally uncanny-looking cop called McClane.  McClane wants to help with the investigation because he wants to solve Anna’s murder.  He has to get the key to the file cabinet that York needs, and when he’s gone, York comments on how “sensitive” the assistant is. What cute homophobia. That’s all I can stand today, so I’m done. I save and quit.

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  1. Margaret says

    My coffee just told me to invest in shoelaces. Should I do it?

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