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Dreamfall: The Longest Journey Preview for Xbox
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Dreamfall: The Longest Journey 

Preview for Xbox

- Lee Tomko, " L3e ", Editor in Chief
Friday, March 31, 2006 

Review Preview

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey

Funcom Dublin, Ltd.
Rating Pending (RP)

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey Screenshot Gallery

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey Screenshot Gallery

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey Screenshot Gallery

With so many great Xbox 360 games coming down the pipe, most Xbox 360 gamers aren't giving Xbox titles a second look. However, the fact is that there are still great games being released on the Xbox that deserve some attention. After playing through a large portion of Dreamfall: The Longest Journey, I can safely say that this is one of those games.

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey is a futuristic adventure game that takes an extremely in-depth storyline, unique characters, three different worlds, three different playable characters and twists them all into one outstanding game. The main character, Zoë Castillo, is the average young lady in the year 2219 and what exactly that consists of...well you will just have to play the game and find out! Zoë Castillo lives in a very futuristic world in many ways, but the environment is not far from what exists today.

In almost all adventure games, the storyline is the hook that will keep gamers playing. Dreamfall is the type of game that you can become fully immersed in and playing for hours upon hours. It does that by continuing to vary the setting, making the characters come to life and seem realistic, and keeping the storyline and action moving. Dreamfall does all of these things very well and most people will become hooked into playing the game constantly.

For example, the first part of the game takes place in a lively and very colorful town with lots of people all over the place. If you want to go to the gym, you actually have to leave your house, walk around the little town and maybe talk to a few people or drop by a few shops, and then continue onto the gym. The next part of the game takes place in a dark and dreary town where it always seems to be raining. Everybody here is poor; there are stores in tents set up on sidewalks; and dozens gathered around fires in barrels. It is this variety and the constant movement of the storyline that keeps things very interesting.

Besides the great storyline and unique characters, there is actually a game here that takes some skill to play. For the most part you are doing very basic gameplay to further the interesting story, but there are some parts that take some skill. As you play through the game you will have to use a wide range of objects. You will store these objects in your inventory and they can be taken out at any time. The most useful item in your inventory is, of course, your cell phone (or "mobile" as it's referred to.) Other items will change depending on where you are at in the game. For instance, you may have a stone, fire axe, dirty rag, or maybe even a Wonkers brain in your inventory. (Wonkers is a futuristic gorilla toy with a very high level of artificial intelligence, which plays a very important roll in the game.) You can also combine objects in your inventory to create something new. For example, you can take a fire axe handle, wrap a cloth around it, then light it on fire and use it as a torch. Objects in your inventory will be used often, so it's important to pick up as much stuff as you can.

Controlling your character is also another key to the gameplay. You may be required to jump up onto a dumpster and climb through a window. You can interact with lots of objects in a number of different ways. You can usually view an object and Zoe will describe what it is and possible what she thinks it might be used for. So if you were to look at a pebble on the ground, she might say something like, “Oh, it’s just a pebble.” You can also choose to interact with objects and this usually involves picking them up and storing them into inventory or use an object on another object. Using the far focus is another big part of the controls. The far focus is useful for interact with objects that are out of reach. By pressing in the left stick, you will be able to control a beam of light and focus it on any object. Once you are focused on the object you can interact with it like normal.

Also, another part of the game that actually requires some skill is fighting, or basic combat. In the first part of the game, you will learn the basics of fighting and then use these techniques a few times throughout the game. The combat is kept very simply and you won't be doing things like purchasing hot new finishers and juicing up your stats. Dreamfall is not a fighting game and the combat is kept extremely simple. This is something that could have been expanded on a little, but it's pretty cool to beat down an enemy or two every now and then.

The graphics of Dreamfall are very impressive, for an Xbox title. Character models and the environments are the best aspects of the graphics in this game. Everything looks realistic and interesting, but not anything that is going to blow you away. Throughout the three different worlds you will be able to play in, there are lots of things to look at and they all look fantastic.

Voice acting is another excellent part of this game. All the dialogue and text that is said in the game has voice-overs, so you don’t have to read anything if you don’t want to. There are several spots in the game where a character explains what is going on for quite some time and it’s great that you don’t have to sit there reading every word of it. The voice acting also helps to bring the characters to life and almost never sounds cheesy.

Dreamfall: The Longest Journey looks like it is going to turn out as an incredible adventure game for the Xbox. It has everything that a great adventure game should have: an extremely in-depth storyline, believable characters, action, tons of things to figure out, and great graphics. The actual gameplay seems to be very basic and not that challenging from what I have played so far, so let’s hope that as the game goes on it gets more difficult. With no online play or even a co-operative mode, this game might not get that much attention. On top of that, this is still an Xbox game and most gamers are probably interested in only Xbox 360 titles or saving up to get a 360. Because of these factors, I think Dreamfall could end up being the sleeper hit of the year for Xbox.

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