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PAX West - First Look: Long Gone Days: A Glimpse into a Compelling Turn-Based RPG

One of my most talked-about games from PAX West, Long Gone Days, is a turn-based RPG with some action elements as well. The story is compelling, and the artwork is beautiful. Although the demo was shorter than I had hoped, it showed enough to indicate that something special is happening in this game, and I am itching to play more.

The protagonist is a young man named Rourke who joined an underground army as a sniper. The opening scene has you positioned in a building several stories up, and you must take out the approaching enemies from the window. You move the crosshairs into position with the control stick to take your shots. You only have so many bullets, enough to miss a few times, but the pressure still exists. After you take out the enemies, you proceed to leave but are cornered by additional armed adversaries. This is where the turn-based combat comes into play. Unlike traditional RPGs, this one has you facing the enemies from a first-person perspective. You select which body parts you wish to target to attack, each area having different effects and success rates. For instance, shooting the arm may paralyze that area, preventing the enemy from attacking, but the success rate to hit isn’t as high as if you were to target the body.

In the next scene, the flashback shows when you join this underground army called The Core. I was impressed by how much emotion the art portrayed. Each character you interacted with had their portrait appearing in the bottom corner of the screen as the dialogue appeared. The character's mouth and expression would change, which may not sound like a big deal, but I have played plenty of RPGs where the character's portrait remained static. The game's attention to detail like this made me sing its praises.

But the portraits didn't just impress me, the overall art style amazed me with its pixelated throwback to SNES graphics. However, what astounded me even more was the amount of expression and detail captured in these characters. I was particularly struck by a character whom I interacted with who displayed impatience by tapping her foot. Additionally, there was a scene where my comrades and I were riding on a train to our destination, and the exhaustion the characters felt was expertly conveyed through the art. The attention to detail in bringing these characters and the world to life was beautifully executed.

The demo was short but sweet, and I wanted to play more. Look forward to when this game releases in October.



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