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<  Fatale  ~  First impression (includes Spoilers)

bzou
Posted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 1:32 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 29 Aug 2009 Posts: 2
Caught myself on a thought I could watch THE dance forever...
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Briker
Posted: Sat Oct 10, 2009 11:47 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 25 Mar 2009 Posts: 17
bzou wrote:
Caught myself on a thought I could watch THE dance forever...
Me too, I was hypnotized by Salome, as well as with music.... and not in 'that' way. Girls don't do much for me, to put it that way.
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Zephon
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 7:54 am Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Oct 2009 Posts: 1 Location: Ukraine
Yeah, its a strange game...with interesting gameplay.
I havent read about Solom ,or what is there, and i dont understand what happen in the game. Its too hard, because i dont know English so good. Does someone can to say there will be localization in Russian language?
beforehand thankful Smile
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Michael
Posted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:00 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
Hm... maybe we overestimated people's familiarity with the story of Salome.... What are they teaching kids in schools these days? Wink
Maybe I should run a poll. Polls are fun. Laughing
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Feuille
Posted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 11:09 pm Reply with quote
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Played Fatale for the first time yesterday. Just wonderful. Spent a lot of time gazing at the discarded veils. They seemed to breathe with some inner light. Standing by Salome's thighs at one point, her veil streaming and flickering over my head, I swore I could smell her fragrance commingled with tense sweet and zephyrs from the sea.

Imagine my surprise when a parcel arrived for me this morning. A gift of a multicoloured veil so like the ones in Fatale...

I have never played any computer game before, but this has me hooked.
Michael
Posted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 9:32 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
Sounds wondeful, Feuille. Surprised
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Guest
Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2009 1:30 am Reply with quote
Well, that was beautiful. I've admired the work of ToT since I first discovered the Path a few months back, and I'm glad to see another gem. Again, the "game" environment is used to augment the experience, and I found myself lost in a wonderful world of beauty tinged with sadness.

Personal taste makes me like this more than the Path, as the latter was a bit too disturbing for me to play more than a couple of times (sorry, the buzz saw imagery still keeps me up nights). While hardly "happy happy joy joy", Fatale struck me as more meditative, and I find myself leaving the game with a feeling of completeness-- perhaps, like the spirit of John, I have embraced and said goodbye to all the elements of the scene.

My only wish for the "game" would be for it to be longer, perhaps with more scenes to explore.
Enny
Posted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 5:58 am Reply with quote
Joined: 25 Mar 2009 Posts: 66 Location: The US of A
Well, this seems to be the place to put initial responses, so here's my "review" of FATALE.


I played it last nightmorning, from about 3:30 to 5:15am, eastern standard time, so about nineteen hours ago(?). (I bought it the day it was released, but real life decided it wouldn't give me any properly set aside art-gaming time until yesterday. I also purposefully stayed away from the ToT forums and any review sites so I could keep my opinion of it unbiased.)

I had to restart twice, because of framerate issues with the settings I had chosen.

It was either in the instructions, controls, or readme, but there was a line about how in the cistern, how you had to "Wait for the end." That struck me as very poignant, even though it was not in the 'game' itself.

The 7 veils had me wondering whether I was finding them or whether they were showing up at certain intervals, and were linked to the timer. The swelling music truly gave it a sense of impending doom and sadness, and I just knew from the music and sound effects that there would be someone coming to kill 'me'. Sure enough, when I turned around, there was a man stalking towards me with a scimitar. That was a mite unsettling.

My experience on the terrace can be summarized as "wtf".
I played the initial release version, and the controls really detracted from the experience. Even knowing that they were made difficult to handle on purpose didn't help. I got caught up in just trying to find the lights that the words that rang out when the background changed didn't register with me at all. Moving around was abysmally awkward. It felt like it was just a quest for candles, and even when I did find them, some of them were really clunky and difficult to put out.

The "end" after I did put them all out was another 'wtf' moment, but not aggravating. It was one where I actually wanted to stop and think.

I loved the music. Throughout the whole experience, it was a highlight.
I recognized the beauty of all the renders, but I was too caught up with the irksome control scheme to really give them the attention they warranted.
There were a few things that did manage to stand out to me on the terrace. The anachronistic elements, simply by their nature, did attract my attention: the amp and guitar, shoes, matchcases, and ipod. I was particularly tickled by Salome's ipod. I adored the little scorpion that scuttled away after I doused that one pretty lamp in a corner.

And I was struck by how high and mighty, how smug and content Herodias looked, especially in comparison to Salome, who looked lost in thought, in the truest and harshest sense of the word. Iokaanan himself looked at peace, which was a tad odd, considering he had recently been painfully executed, until I remembered that I was 'playing' as him (it never occurred to me that the disembodied floater could be anyone but him), simply going about and saying his last farewells to the small world around him.

The dance itself was beautiful. I wanted to jump up onto the terrace and start dancing with her. I loved how long it was, even as I wish it hadn't ended. There was an exotic element to the dance and its style, but it never came across as even the least bit sexualized. It was simply a girl who loved to dance, dancing, with all her heart and soul. I don't mean to get all wordy and praise-y, but there really was more to it than just the apparent. One day I shall learn Salome's dance.

So. In conclusion, with the clunky controls overwhelming the beauty and fragmented story, I did not enjoy FATALE. But I did appreciate it. And I know that if I go back and 'play' it a second and third time, I will reach the point of enjoyment.

It's quite different from The Path, but it's something that Tale of Tales should rightly be proud of.
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Michael
Posted: Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:32 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
Glad to hear you at least enjoyed part of Fatale.

The controls were really not "made difficult to handle on purpose". They are not conventional, for sure, but they were designed to be easy to use. I think the problem is that the controls were designed to optimize the feeling of floating around leisurely and this conflicted with the sort of "game mission" of extinguishing candles. Because of the game-like element, players may desire more precise control.

If this had been a bigger project, we would have been able to do more thorough playtesting and would probably have encountered and solved this problem. Either by making the controls more efficient, or by removing the game. As it is, Fatale remains an interesting experiment for us, both in terms of artistic research as in terms of understanding the audience.

This being said, some people enjoyed the controls a lot. So it's still subjective.

Looking forward to your next cosplay! Wink
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Michael
Posted: Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:33 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
Oh, and since you enjoyed the dance, have a look here! Surprised
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fire_and_a_rose
Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:42 am Reply with quote
Joined: 28 Mar 2009 Posts: 14
Michael wrote:
What are they teaching kids in schools these days?


It's all in Plato, Michael! All in Plato!

That said...

Having done my major research paper on Wilde to pass senior English, however? Salome is one of the least-used pieces of his, I came to believe, in teaching. His other plays often have such similarities between moments of them, and in style, that if a teacher assigns them, it means that they also have an easy essay question to think of.

Plus, I'm sure there have been attempts to ban it; I can see, I suppose, why it's controversial. But I'll also thwap my beloved copy over the head of anyone who tries to argue that "controversial" means "bad" and "should not be allowed near the eyes nor hands of teenagers".
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explorer
Posted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 11:45 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 24 Nov 2009 Posts: 3 Location: sweden
ok, I played it...was left with the feeling already stated by Enni: wtf?
I had very little recollection of the play so I went ahead and read it followed by another try at Fatale. It made a lot more sense this time and I enjoyed it so much more, so if you haven't read it then I would recommend it.
I didn't really understand who'se voice you heard when "focusing" on the candles (probably salom?) But I could not find that text in the play! or did I not remember the play correctly?
Also the game is to short. It is a wonderful experience, but not something I would charge money for. It felt like a demo compared to the path which has kept me entertained and thinking for quite some time.
I know this made me think much more then the path, and including me reading the play and about salome it invited me into another world. But I would really really rather have these things hinted to me in the game, incoperated to some extent, Fatale did not speak for itself, the play spoke for it which in maybe some eyes are just right but in mine seemed a bit...lazy?
I didn't at all get the ipod, the matches, guitarr, sound of cars etc. Maybe I am missing something big here because I hope it's not just to throw us of...it seems like a very very cheap trick to put some modern things into a old setting. (kind of did that a bit with the path taking place outside a modern or future city)
Needles to say the dance was just amazing, and the music.
to sum it all up, brilliantly executed, brilliant idea but I wish maybe a bit more time would be spent on it to fleshen out the experience.
I sound quite critical but despite this Fatale is among the most amazing interactive experiences I have had so Thanks so much ToT keep up the good work, I will always support you and buy your games, or maybe simulations rather!
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Michael
Posted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 11:18 am Reply with quote
Site Administrator Joined: 07 Jun 2002 Posts: 8065 Location: Gent, Belgium
One of the underlying ideas of Fatale was to make the player feel like they were in the past, in Salome's time and then reveal, in the end, that the entire thing took place in modern times. We wanted to expose some of the dangers of orientalism and make a connection between the old story and the present day situation in that region.

We were originally going to express this only in the sound at the end (the waking up of a modern day city). But decided to add some small anachronistic "foreshadowing" in the game world as well. We wanted to keep this link to the present as a surprise. And perhaps a motivation to play the game again. I personally wanted to put Salome in a track suit in the epilogue. But we decided that that was too extreme.

As it turns out, it seems like we've been way too subtle about this. Very few people understand what we were trying to do with this element. As a result, the anachronistic elements merely feel absurd and even cause annoyance. We'll try to be more clear about our intentions next time.
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explorer
Posted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 6:51 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 24 Nov 2009 Posts: 3 Location: sweden
First, sorry for being a bit hars...I realized that after reading my post
Shocked
I don´t dislike the idea of reconnecting the story to the present. And actually I really like the idea of just keeping the sounds of the cars in the end, it was that it was the opposite of being subtle using such obvious items in the scene that kind of threw me off. Having a painting of an old scene and put some new object in completely changes the idea of the picture. And I was in the middle of saying my goodbye to the world and that whole amazing setting you build up so well so when I saw these very out of context objects it dragged me completely out of the setting created. Maybe just keep the something small you would see only if you really looked for it.

And for me critisising how the play was speaking for fatale, and fatale not speaking for itself I have to say it was also a good way you did it. But I really wished I had read the play before emerging into fatale. I still think the experience could have been "fleshened out" and made longer.

Putting Salome in a tracksuit is a pretty cool idea thou, maybe after each time you play the game the scene would change a little bit, and after several times salome would be in the tracksuit. That would prolong the experience and there would be much more room for you to add different angles to the story, a bit similar to playing the path with different characters.

And I did not understand that you were especially reffering to the present in that region, but that is my lack of knowledge of the culture in that region and not Fatale´s fault...shame on me Wink
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Guest
Posted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 10:21 am Reply with quote
Well I just got done playing and at first I was rather confused at what to do. Being in games for a while, I ran around and shoved a few boxes around. I saw a door but didn't know how to open it. I thought I was suppose to open it and then go to the next part. I like the way the music gets echoey when you move away from it. Then the guy came in and killed me and I thought I was dead... well I was... but I mean, video game DEAD where I had to start over... kinda like The Path if you actually STAY on the path.

Well when I finally got outside, I was confused by the controles a little but I got the hang of it. It took me a sec to realize I was suppose to put out the lights and it took me another second to figure out how.

I liked how you could move the vails around with your candle. That was neat. Sometimes the candles were kind of hard to find though. I saw the light, but couldn't find the actual candle. I also liked how when you held the mouse down, things got all... well... otherworldly.

The only thing I didn't understand was why did you guys have a grain effect over the whole game?... Like a broken TV? I actually thought it was kind of cool like it was showing that you had a distant link back to that event and you could fade away any second.

Then I started zooming around Salome and noticed a rhythmic sounding and I couldn't figure out what it was for the longest. At first I thought it was her just tapping her fingers on the wall then I listened closer and it sounded like music in headphones. I KNEW it was the past and I'm just like... where is that music coming from? Headphones don't exist!... well until I saw the last candle and BAM... iPod. ... I had to pause the game, get up, laughed a bit, and then came back.
Reading some of the eralier posts, yes I don't think that was a good way to hint that it was actually present times. It was more comical than it was a hint. Here I am thinking she's standing there deep in thought about the previous events that had just taken place, nd in reality she's jammin' out to the latest pop song she just got off iTunes... Nice work ToT. I didn't see the amp or guitar though.

The dance was wonderful, but wow you guys sure do love using the Bloom effects, but who am I to talk? I really enjoy using those too. It made it a LITTLE hard to see. I realized I couldn't move though and that when I let go of the mouse, it pulled me right back to my spot. Yes I guses it does make it a bit more interesting to watch. Overall, I thought this was a wonderful piece of work... maybe not the best GAME as far as the definition of games go, but indeed a wonderful piece of workthat I enjoyed interacting with.

I've never read the play but I did see the Bible version of the story. I think I'll read both again and then play it Wonderful job.

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