Hi Mr. Croes and congratulations on your release of the first demo of Alisa. I had a great experience playing it and I’m highly looking forward to play the next demo (if any before the final release). You did an amazing job at recreating the style, ambiance, and gameplay of an old PS1 survival horror game and I had, as I was playing, many flashbacks of the very first Resident Evil. My congratulations also to Miss Yoshimura for her great soundtrack that truly fits the ambiance of an old survival horror game (Is she actually your muse for Alisa’s character? Not only does she voice her but their names are almost the same).
There are many points I would like to share with you on how you could continue to improve your game:
BUGS/GLITCHES (Maybe some of these have already been addressed in the new version of your game... Also, I was playing with an Xbox 360 controller, if such information matters.):
1-When you enter a room, if you stand too far away from the door when pressing the action button (to trigger the enter command), you will sometimes appear outside of the room you try to enter (beyond the walls), or literally inside the door. I did not test it on all doors but it happened on many of them.
2-When you go up or down the stairs, if you hold the aim button while reaching the floor, Alisa will remain in her climbing animation, and you can even shoot your weapon at the same time.
3-When your health is very low and Alisa gets in her ‘’wounded gait’’, if you unequid your weapon and walk (but not run), she will fall face down for no apparent reason and won’t be able to get up. The funny thing is that she can still move around while she lays down, use her weapon, change room, climb the stairs, and even have the conversation with Pol, all this while laying down!
4-If you press the aim button very shortly, the weapon/health window will not fully appear on screen and appear incomplete. It seems that the window is dragged on screen at the same speed Alisa is raising her weapon, and therefore, if you interrupt the raising motion before she is fully done, the window will also stop its motion.
5-In the conversation between Alisa and Pol, the bottom and top of the screen become black. Still, as the camera transits from one character to the other as they talk, the bottom and top of the screen become normal again for a brief flash (before turning black again). It does the same during the cutscene where Alisa wakes up in bed and also the one where she meets the first enemy doll.
1-The enemies are extremely easy to pass by as they don’t attack immediately when you get close to them (you can even run around them while remaining very close to them; they will then just stop moving forward and will simply rotate on a fixed axis while trying to face you, which even allows you to literally push them and they won’t even attack). I would suggest changing their attack pattern so they would attack more quickly when you get close to them, making it therefore risky to try to pass them by).
2-The pink doll enemies, when shot, will stop walking and attacking, which makes them extremely vulnerable once you get a good shooting angle on them (like when they walk straight towards you). Indeed, if you shoot the pistol at max speed, the dolls will barely even be able to walks towards you. Also, even if the doll is right in front of you, your pistol can shoot faster than her attack motion, making the doll unable to attack you in time. I would suggest removing that ‘’stop walking/attacking when being shot’’ thing so that the dolls can become a better challenge (especially if you intend to include an auto-aim option in the future!). But keep the sound they make when you shoot them, I like it!
3-I would suggest having a weak melee weapon very early in the game so the player can at least have a weapon in case he will end up with no ammunition (or try to save them). It could actually even be Alisa’s bare fists and/or feet when equipping no weapon (just like Jennifer in Rule of Rose).
4-When you are in the items menu, for some reason, the only way to exit is by selecting that ‘’return arrow’’, which is very annoying and counter intuitive. We should also be able to exit the items menu using the cancel/return button on the controller.
5-When looking at the map, it would be nice to see Alisa’s exact location into the room she is. An arrow or triangle would be good as it can also indicate the direction she is facing, therefore making navigation easier.
6-Being able to delete keys that you don’t need anymore might be a good idea.
7-Why is the military uniform providing the same defence percentage as the regular dress (15%)? It would be nice if it would give a little extra defence, since you pay for it.
8-Maybe it was just for the demo, but I hope we won’t get the machinegun so early in the game. It is too strong.
OTHER ADVICES ON THE GAME:
1-Being able to exit the game from the main menu would be nice. Right now I can only exit the game using Alt-F4 as the ‘’Quit’’ function just resets the game.
2-The voice acting could get some improvement... Although the current recordings definitely give the game a PS1 vibe!
MINOR SUGGESTIONS (I’m being very picky here so be warned):
1-The way Alisa walks when she holds no weapon is really unnatural. I would suggest giving her a more natural gait.
2-When Alisa’s health is very low, she will get into her ‘’wounded gait’’. Her walking wounded gait is good, but her running one looks strange, like if she was jumping a little while running. I would suggest modifying it so it looks more natural. It should also be slower, in my opinion, as one so close to death should not be able to go that fast.
3-When Alisa is in her ‘’wounded gait’’, if you change room, she will appear in the new room standing straight (as if unwounded) but will then immediately fall forward into her wounded posture. This also happens after completing the key puzzle. It gives the impression that she is suddenly deflating and it would be nice to address it.
4-When one remove’s Alisa’s dress, she ends up being barefoot. Still, the sound of her footsteps is clearly the one of someone wearing shoes. A barefoot sound would be nice.
5-When Alisa is barefoot, her feet are in the same angle as when she is wearing shoes (i.e. like if she were wearing heels), which looks weird. Correcting this would make her look more natural.
6-In most games, when your character remains still for a while, he will often change posture as if he was bored or was losing patience. Although Alisa will put her machinegun over her shoulders after a while when standing still, she does nothing when holding the pistol or no weapon. A change of posture would be nice too.
7-When you open the drawer at the beginning of the demo, you find the handgun, a key, and a note. But when you pick the handgun, you suddenly have an extra clip of ammunitions. Maybe we should not get the extra clip out of nowhere and instead pick it up independently?
1-While keeping the ‘’Name your own price’’ option when downloading the game, I believe being able to receive a bonus for donating a certain amount of money would be nice. But maybe it is more an option for when the full game will be released...
So I hope my advices will be of some help and I’ll be happy to provide them on the next demos!
I wish you the best of luck with the rest of the game’s development; this is truly a project I’m looking forward to play in its full version!