Publicada: 25 de outubro
+ Beautiful art design
+ Interesting story
+Controlling Alice feels great
+Combat stays fresh for most of the game
+ Enemies' design is amazing
+ Voice acting is mostly good throughout the game
+ Tons of collectibles
+ Cool weapons
+ Great soundtrack
+ Weapon upgrades
- Repetitive puzzles
- Stale platforming
- Annoying camera
- Level design is as linear as linear gets
- Tons of invisible walls
- Some game breaking bugs - Getting stuck, getting knocked down and never getting up again (which mean you will not die and have to restart)
- Impressively boring if played for more than 20/30 minutes (longer periods of play)
- The absence of the original's weapons still haunts me (Deck of Cards, Jacks, Demon Dice, etc.)
When you start playing "Alice Madness Returns", it is quite evident that its art design is unique and downright beautiful. Personally, I think this game is already worth checking out at least once just for its art direction. It starts out with beautiful, calm and bright landscapes - which are really colorful and highly detailed; once ♥♥♥♥ starts hitting the fan, that beautiful Wonderland turns into something ghastly, corrupted and quite disturbing - the catch is, it's equally appealing. As stated, eye-candy is abundant from start to finish all you will have many opportunities to catch your breath and take some beautiful screenshots.
Platforming is a big part of "Alice Madness Returns" and it seems it gets worse as the game goes on. The problem is that one can only pull so many levers before getting bored. The level design plays a vital role here; it is extremely linear and you are pretty much getting from point A to point B with little to no side objectives - collectibles alleviate this somehow by making you go off your main path; unfortunately, by the end of the game, you will most likely find yourself ignoring some (if not most) of them, since they required YET another lever and a couple more jumps and floats.
Story-wise, this game shines. The story is nothing to write home about but it does a decent enough job of making you wanting to keep playing - I guess it ends quite abruptly but still, it's good in my opinion. It manages to keep you invested in Alice's "quest" and the use of "Alice in Wonderland"'s characters was refreshing (even though the first game did it better).
Voice acting is, as said, really good. You meet your fair share of looney characters with high pitched voices and your dark enemies have intimidating voices and sound effects. The soundtrack is great. I think I is the kind of soundtrack I would buy if it was available. Weapon sounds also feels great as you cut enemies in halt and fill their ♥♥♥♥'s with (peppered) lead.
Combat stays fresh for most of the game. Enemies require different strategies to be defeated and later on there are multiple types of enemies at the same time which requires you to adapt accordingly to the enemies weaknesses.
You have 4 weapons (or 5 if you count the umbrella) at your disposal and, even though I wanted more weapons, including some from the original game, they are enough to keep the combat engaging. Being able to upgrade them with Teeth (in-game currency) is also a bonus since you can turn your fluffy looking Hobby Horse into a full-fledged fire breathing stallion of punishment and death or your traditional Pepper Grinder into a.... full-fledged fire breathing... cooking..... tool.... ..... of punishment and death.
However, the camera tends to flip out during combat and changing targets is a shore, usually costing you a chunk of your health.
Invisible walls are everywhere, some small holes and gaps where Alice could easily fit in are regarded as impossible to cross and, considering the game is "quite" recent, it is something I found both annoying and disappointing. They are everywhere.
I made a mistake while playing this game. I thought "I am going to play this for 2 or 3 hours" and let me tell you that it is something I sincerely do not recommend you to do.
Most levels go like this: Jump, jump, jump and float; pull a lever/switch; more platforms show up; you can jump some more just to pull yet another lever; once you reach a bigger platform, you will have a battle; once you finish off all the enemies, more platforms show up. You then put a Bomb on a pressure pad so the platforms don't disappear and make your way to the other side well before the bomb detonates; then you will jump some more and pull some more levers... Sounds repetitive? That's because it is! I believe, after the first 2 hours or, let's say, 2/3 levels, this game gets on your nerves fairly quickly. I recommend it in short bursts.
But still, this may sound bad and all but Alice moves so effortlessly that the platforming sections feel graceful. It feels great even though it eventually gets boring.
Some other bugs break the experience a little bit. One example is when you jump on a mushroom (it acts like a trampoline), you can only move again once Alice reaches the top of her ascension and starts falling down again; if you were pressing forward when you were going up, you will need to press it again after Alice starts descending so she moves forward - have fun dying because of it, since you will find yourself wasting extra jumps in the air while standing still.
For me, "Alice Madness Returns" is a big disappointment, yet, I can't bring myself to hate it.
Here's the thing: I wanted to like this game. Unfortunately, I found myself getting frustrated and bored for a big chunk of its 14 or so hours of story.
Is it worth buying? Not for 10 €. I would suggest 75% off, considering the game's age. But still, if you like engaging stories and value art design in video games, 5 € should be ok as well. It is a game everyone should experience at least once!
As far as replay value goes... I think you will only be playing this once.
This game had so much potential. It could have been something as epic as "Batman: Arkham City". That's what makes me sad.
Score: 6.5 out of 10.