ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident
Mongoose Net Ltd.
February 24, 2016
ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident is an attempt by ComixPlay to combine the worlds of comics and video games. As an idea, it sounds quite novel on paper, but when it comes to execution, there is a clear lack of vision. This ‘game’ falls under the Visual Novel category, which means the focus is more on the visual presentation and story rather than the actual gameplay.
ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident, as the name indicates is the first entry in a series. It is a story set in the future where humanity has colonised multiple planets and moons in the Solar System. A team of gifted humans is training on Pluto under the banner of the Solar Defenders. These are our Superheroes, some of whom show up as playable characters in the course of the story.
The villain of ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident is a deranged alien that calls themselves the Endless. While the comic makes this clear at the outset, the protagonists are taken on a long and arduous journey to reach this conclusion. This reduces the connect of the reader to the story of the heroes. The comic itself is interspersed with random flashbacks to fill in on the back story of the main characters. The reason these flashbacks stick out like a sore thumb is that they tend to break the flow of the main story rather than adding to it.
In terms of art style, ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident, sports a comic drawn in the American style with broad strokes and gradients used to full effect. However, the artwork is not very consistent with some panels looking quite beautiful while others look utterly horrendous. The same art does not seem to carry over to the loading screen or the gameplay section of this visual novel, making the gameplay section look like a tacked on extra rather than being part of the comic. Given that the art is an important component of a visual novel, the overall mediocre presentation of ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident does t no favours. The only redeeming aspect is the implementation of the comic reader that is inbuilt.
While ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident attempts to meld comics and video games, the gameplay is tacked on as an afterthought rather than being central to driving the story forward. This is evidenced by the fact that all of the 9 battles in the game can be skipped and the story continues irrespective of the outcome. The gameplay itself is a rather bland jrpg thing where you are limited to just three heroes at any given time, with combat being turn based. The AI has predictable attacks and while there are opportunities to mix things up with special abilities and formation changes, these are so limited in number that it becomes a chore to get through the multiple waves of each battle. Saving the abilities for later waves might seem like a wise strategy, but usually it’s better to use them when needed. Another major gripe is that sacrificing a turn in order to build up a hero’s power is rather pointless given that the more powerful attack does only slightly more damage than the normal attack, which means that attacking every turn seems to be the best strategy.
The battles have little balance and vary sharply in difficulty on ComixPlay # 1 The Endless Incident. There are three difficulty modes on offer and you can change the difficulty midgame. If this is supposed to be the future of comics and video games, then it is nothing to be excited about. There is great potential in the concept and ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident falls greatly short of it.
The Music Score is forgettable at best and downright annoying at worst. The sound effects are generic and do nothing to enhance the experience. In terms of length, ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident is quite small at about 2-3 hours to get through it. The UI is decent and the comic book reader is perhaps the best aspect of this visual novel.
While ComixPlay #1 The Endless Incident is based on a rather novel idea, it suffers from a lack of vision to realise it and the result is a mediocre comic book with tacked on gameplay that seems like an afterthought. The good thing about it is that I faced no bugs in my playthrough and the comic reader’s presentation was rather well done. The story itself is a standard good triumphing over evil fare with a few nods to characters from other franchises. All in all, this is one visual novel you’re better off skipping.
+Brilliant Comic Book Reader
-Tacked on Gameplay
-Inconsistent Art Style