Let's Plays and Reviews
A Spy Drama Parody with Charm
A small game with pretty decent replay value and two romantic interests. "Blind Men" by Man Eater Games boasts a different take on the spy fiction franchise, and it doesn't disappoint. There are some comeuppances during the playthrough, but it was a game that I found myself enjoying. The game quality was decent and some of the colorful cast was memorable.
And with that, let's get on to the review and first impressions!
GRAPHICS (RATING 8/10)
The assets of the game were unique. Character designs will remind you of one character or another, which is the charm on its own. I guess you could say that it came with a cartoon touch? But that would not be doing it justice. It's an art style of its own, and it portrayed the characters well. I don't know if it was my exposure to other visual novels and dating sims, but I'm glad the characters were proportionate in size, as a whole.
What bothered me a bit, if I were to nitpick, were the 'ambidextrous sprites'. Having an eye-patch comes with disadvantages, so flipping the character around confused me for a while on where that eye-patch should really be: right or left.
I wished there were more drawn scenes of the fighting and other character interactions. It would add a whole new depth to the game, I think. I was left confused during a scene where an explosion was to occur but all I got was a silent black screen before it faded to some days later.
WRITING (RATING 8/10)
As a parody, it served well. It poked some fun at some of the stereotypes you see or read in spy fiction. But when I went through the Sergei route, I didn't exactly feel that blooming romance until the very end. It isn't bad, really. More like I thought there would be more to show.
This leads to my next point: the length of the game. Story-wise, it would only hold you for roughly an hour each route. I think I needed more time with the characters to feel attached to them, but that might be hard to pull off given the story I'd been through so far (Sergei-Kidnap Route).
Some grammatical errors were found, as well. I had to backtrack every now and then to correct myself as I narrated the playthrough. That one was easily fixable, though, so I didn't mind it too much. (My professors might cry for my soul at that.) But the errors were not abysmal (I'm looking at so many devs out there, you wouldn't believe it), so I'm letting this slide.
Overall, I think more time could be used to demonstrate a blooming romance, but as a short game, it sufficed. I bet as a novelization, it would be the right length. It was definitely headed for the right direction. I'd love to see an expansion of this universe.
GAMEPLAY (RATING 7/10)
The gameplay was as per usual with visual novels and dating sims: choices. It also came with functions typical of a Ren.Py Engine: multiple saves and backtracking.
The choice you made might have affected the story (It certainly felt like it), but honestly, but they seem to not be too grand or significant in the overall sight of things. It's an interesting approach, though, and the decisions count for getting a good or bad ending.
What I liked was how you could save at a fork in decisions itself. I didn't find that in Coming Out On Top.
OVERALL (RATING 7.5/10)
It's a decent-running game with a good premise. I could maybe have used more plot, but the characterization was nicely done. Definitely good to play. Personally, I think Man-Eater Games did an excellent job with the game. I think it just could use some extra polish to make it even more worthwhile.
They could update the game. It's not unheard of. They might even toss in other characters!
It's a fun little game with an interesting story. Don't believe me? See the Playthrough below!
Why not get the game itself? Click here and buy it!