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Title: Captain Firebeard and the Bay of Crows
Genre: Adventure, Casual
Sapphire Dragon Productions
Sapphire Dragon Productions
Release Date: 4 Oct, 2017
captain firebeard and the bay of crows
This pirate game (long title, can\u2019t be bothered to write it all down) is a charming kinetic novel with a pac-man style minigame. They really should have just written that on the blurb instead but I understand that such a concise description isn\u2019t great for marketing so you\u2019ll have to get your gospel truths from me!
In my usual style I will rattle through my categories:
Story, Writing & Characters
The plot is interesting and has a splash of real history, which I like a lot. Too many times have I seen things set in the Golden Age of Piracy where certain elements are taken from completely different centuries and then smashed together into one, ignoring historical accuracy. I can tell that everything here is really well researched and correct. The writing was sharp, witty and period accurate. The characters feel realistic and consistent and you do feel that you are on an exciting adventure, which is essential in a pirate tale. I liked the jokes a lot, especially those surrounding the hapless captain and his unlucky crew. My favorite character was probably Lady Wendy; something about powerful, calculating women just does it for me\u2026 mmmm Teresa May\u2026. I also enjoyed that a fellow Frenchman was shown as being a bad\u2665\u2665\u2665\u2665\u2665pirate hunter! That was maybe the best bit for me! Vive La France!
Loved it! Character sprites are bursting with detail and the coloring is really very nice indeed. Great costumes and I really loved how many different expressions each character had. Same goes for the background art, brimming with detail and really does an awesome job of immersing us in the adventure.
As I\u2019ve been playing a lot of Visual Novels as of late I am beginning to realize the importance of UI for a good experience playing it. I think a good IU really does so much in making the reading experience a pleasure in Visual Novels. In the case of this Visual Novel the UI was very smooth and polished. I liked the pirate\/nautical theme a lot and it was decorative yet not obtrusive. A very nice balance and maybe the strongest aspect to this game!
This Visual Novel has voice acting! So we have an extra category. Now generally I am of the belief that a Visual Novel should only have voice acting if the acting is quite good. No voice acting is better than bad voice acting and personally I do feel perfectly capable of imagining the voices myself. In this case I felt the voice acting was generally good so I give it a pass! The occasional line here and there had poor delivery and I do feel there was a bit of a skill gap between certain actors but in general I felt that the voice acting did feel in line with the story. The actor that played the Lt. Carlos had really good pacing and the actress that played Lady Wendy was awesome!
Music & Audio
I liked the music a lot. It had a very authentic and pirate-y feel and very much what you\u2019d expect from a pirate game: sea shanties, jigs, fiddle and accordion and a bit of flamenco. There were also a few orchestral tracks for the action scenes. Much like the backgrounds, the music did an awesome job of immersing one in the world of these pirates.
Good use of SFX though I felt they could have had a little bit more. Audio leveling for the voice acting was generally good but there were moments where certain lines were very soft and other times certain lines were very loud.
The minigame was cute, but in my opinion, unnecessary. Like it was fun and everything the first time and I can see why having it in the middle might be nice to take a break from reading (or in this case, listening) but all in all it is a bit tedious if you are just wanting to go through the story. Fortunately they put a skip button so yay! It\u2019s just a pacman re-skin really not very hard. The way it was made was nice though, the menu, the items, sfx and controls felt good. It was well crafted but just not my cup of tea.
I\u2019ve played a few other VN\u2019s by this studio and if I\u2019m honest it\u2019s not necessarily their best one, but it is their most polished and I can definitely see big improvements with how they\u2019re doing things. At six dollars for 3 hours gameplay it is a little pricey but I had a good time playing this and just for the hilarious jokes alone, I think it\u2019s worth buying. Games that are truly funny and do tickle the funny bone are rare to find so do get it if you have 3 hours to kill!
Pleasant and easygoing Visual Novel with good polish. Not the best in the world given it\u2019s price but still very amusing.
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