The Blind Prophet: Overview
Imagine that you are looking at some cool comic book like “Hellboy” and suddenly the heroes on the pages seem to come to life, start to say something, and you have to choose your own replicas and even solve puzzles. Here are some such feelings I had when passing The Blind Prophet , the debut game of the studio Friv5Online
That's just the main character of The Blind Prophet is almost the exact opposite of Hellboy's little devil - combat apostle Bartholomew, who has been engaged in expelling demons from Earth for 2,000 years. In fact, this is such a killer in the service of God, even reminiscent of the witcher Geralt - a blond in a stylish black jacket, all in tattoos, with a sword behind his back. But there is no tail, one eye is covered with a blindfold, and the second is white.
Bartholomew seems to be a blind prophet (hence the name), but in fact he sees perfectly, especially demons. Periodically, on the instructions of the divine party, he descends from heaven to thin out the ranks of demons where they were especially raging. As he passed, the prophet recalls either Stalingrad or Ancient Rome, where he "poisoned the patricians."
This time he will have to clear the demons of the much more modern city of Robrok. But this does not mean that we will have to destroy crowds of monsters with horns and hooves with fire and sword. In The Blind Prophet, the player is opposed by higher demons, who at the same time hide behind other people's faces.
For example, Asmodeus, who is responsible for debauchery, got into the body of a sexy barmaid in a nightclub, which is also a brothel. Mammon, as befits a demon insatiable to money and food, subjugated the mayor of the city, who only cares about increasing his wealth and power. The hateful psychopath Beelzebub, who puts on violence and manipulation, turned into the leader of a new sect, and in fact a local gang clan, in order to join which you need to kill a person.
All seven deadly sins are represented in Robrok - the city itself, as in the well-known comic book and the eponymous film “Sin City” , is mired in them to the very rooftops. Therefore, we will meet with Baal, and with Lucifer, and with Leviathan, and with Satan.
In general, The Blind Prophet has a lot of almost church rhetoric, sometimes moralizing. Even demons, dying from a sword (not only ours), say that people themselves are to blame, that they are insatiable, greedy for sin, money and pleasures.
And yet, the authors do not cross the line where the friv games begin, about which I want to say that they are made with the money of some charitable Christian organization. This is a really powerful noir-style story - with bloody murders, corrupt cops, beautiful girls rescued from a maniac, sects, ghosts, and mysterious suicide investigations. We even have to participate in the television debate as a presenter. And most importantly, there is drama, and lyrics, and tragedy, and even humor. What is only a cutesy fitness trainer in the bandit sect, calculating the calorie content of everything he sees and talks about.
The harsh Bartholomew himself famously cuts demons into pieces, with a screwdriver cuts out their eyes to attach to the scanner, and if necessary, reluctantly stuns or kills ordinary people who got in their way or fell under demonic influence. But at the same time, he is not without sad irony ("Do you see bags under the eyes? I’m 2,000 years old, I don’t need to look in this mirror!") And sincerely cares for the girl from the tattoo parlor who was saved at the very beginning. She distortes his name throughout the game, sometimes calling Burtulumus, or worse — the prophet with a sword sighs heavily, covers his face with his hands, promises her to get a tattoo with his name, and finally exclaims: “Oh God, call me just Bart!”
At some point, a fighting prophet is generally forced to become an intern and prepare coffee for his superiors. In general, the character is not so complex, but not entirely flat. And the plot catches so that four hours fly by in one breath.
It is the story, its cinematic rhythm and dynamics that subordinate the quest part. Therefore, do not be scared when you see a huge map of Robrok. Yes, you will have to move around it a lot, but there are practically no such frequent tasks in this genre in the spirit of “Run there, take the desired item there, return here, then run there ...”. Firstly, it is always clearly stated in the diary what our current task is. Secondly, all the main events of the current episode, as a rule, are concentrated within a couple of locations where we examine active points (to inspect, use, take, talk?), Select objects, communicate and solve different puzzles. Most often, you simply will not be released anywhere until you complete all the tasks.
At the same time, there are always a few objects, their combinations are obvious, and the riddles for the most part are quite simple. Need to cross the green stream into the sewers? Naturally, in a nearby location there is a rope, and next to it is a broken steering wheel, with which it can be combined, having received a self-made lasso.
There are more fantasies in puzzles and mini-games, but there is clearly not a celebration of the soul for fans of Myst or, for example, Deponia. There are variations of the “Plumber”, the correct selection of the melody, the arrangement of the figurines in the right order, QTE-style exercises for winning arm wrestling, shooting at the shooting range and so on. Hints are always there, although even with them the logic is not always obvious. As in some actions of the hero, who, for example, only the second time deigns to pick up an ax, although he knows about the presence of a locked door in the next room.
However, one should not especially blame the authors for all this. Obviously, a small number of objects, and the low complexity of puzzles, and generally laconic quest situations - everything in The Blind Prophet is subordinated to the rhythm of history with its frantic energy, charisma, darkness and tension.
Quest episodes in this situation simply fulfill their role: they are not particularly distracting, they are more or less entertaining (and there are really a lot of riddles and mini-games) - and thanks for that.
Thanks a lot to the artists of ARS GOETIA . It's useless to explain something here - look at the trailers, take a look at the screenshots and feel that you already want to try this really gorgeous comic book. From the first shots of The Blind Prophet, if it doesn’t fall in love with itself, it certainly forces you to move to the screen, tighten your grip on the mouse and become interested in the style, thoroughbred noir, charisma of the main character and how it all sounds. The battles are literally torn from energy and ecstatic music, and the lyric scenes, when the prophet, for example, squeezes a girl’s corpse that he couldn’t save in his arms, make him want to let a mean man’s one (you must click on one more screenshot in advance - well, such beautiful woman in Sin style City!). In general, this is one of the best quests (albeit imperfect) in recent times.
Pros: a fascinating and tense noir style with a religious bias; charismatic protagonist; many interesting characters; a lot of puzzles and mini-games; the game looks like a comic book, only interactive; powerful music.
Cons: the quest part was not too complicated and inventive.
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