RPG Maker Review: The Old Mask

The Old Mask Unveiled

The Old Mask is a completed game made in RPG Maker 2003 by ScarymanMEOW. I had no idea what the game was going to be like but I looked forward to playing a game without any battles for a change.

This 20-minute “visual novel” is very text heavy so you would want the dialogue to be entertaining and not bore you into spamming the action button like many games do. However, ScarymanMEOW manages to start the game off with a quite intriguing story plot in which two inspectors, Kaldin and Zevin, are sent out to investigate murder at a tower. There are some witty moments of humour as well as a nod to Dragon Fantasy early on. I can only assume the 8-bit graphics were influenced by that too.

The game starts off in the lobby of the tower in which you need to gather information about the murder as well as trawl through books and other objects. Sooner or later you’ll need to start using the menu, the equipment screen makes for some interesting observation.

Inspectors used to carry clubs back in the 80s

The basic gameplay consists of you go from person A to person B to person C and try to unlock new information which opens up dialogue between other NPCs in the tower. This is all well and good but I found it slightly overwhelming with the names and description of the many people involved in the plot but that passed quite quickly as the plot pushed on. The game also has the fetch quests RPGs are renowned to have but it doesn’t take long to get what you need thankfully.

The game has generally a good atmosphere going although I found it hard to associate inspectors with medieval-type of graphics but I guess it ties in with what’s come later in the game. Animations are decent and sound effects are used effectively (I did jump and not urinate at one point).

As the game was laden with text, I checked for any spelling or grammatical mistakes but could only find one which made the game more enjoyable and kept a nice flow to the story.

The dialogue in this game is good, ignore this screenshot

Towards the end of the game, a long cut scene takes over which for me, ends the game too abruptly. I was left confused and felt the story hit a brick wall and crawled towards the finishing line which is a shame as I felt the story was going at a fairly decent pace and was building onto something but oh well, maybe it was intended all along or maybe I started to skip some of the dialogue (by mistake, of course).

The Old Mask is definitely worth playing if you’re looking to pass 20 minutes playing a pacific game but the story falls flat at the end so it’s difficult recommending others to play this for that sole reason.

Overall verdict: average

You can download The Old Mask at RPGMaker.net

One thought on “RPG Maker Review: The Old Mask

  1. Elwood Hritz says:

    Uncovered your internet site via yahoo the other day and absolutely liked it so much. Carry on the great work.

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