Castle Escape

Author: brandygang
Version: 1.0.0
Last Updated: 2014-05-26 09:36:06


Review by Rem
Version reviewed: 1.0.0 on 2022-05-06 19:01:34

The game is quite complex. It also has a large number of bugs. The combination of this might get you frustrated as you play the game. I decided to make a guide to help out those who wish to try this game themselves. You can view it here.
The guide contains spoilers (depending on which section of the guide). Please be mindful of this and read it with care. It gives hints, contains information about important items and which endings are locked behind what form. It also has a specific ending guide, touring you from the very beginning to that specific ending. I wrote it in this way so that it is hopefully helpful to anyone nomatter where you last saved.


My review:

Once upon a time, version 1.0.1 of this game was released on the forum’s game discussion topic. This version included bug fixes. However, all was lost when the hard disk broke down and the 4chared links stopped working (which they often do). Now, stuck with version 1.0.0, welcome to “Castle Escape”, a game with a messy backend programming and bugs.

Castle Escape is an amateur game project made by “brandygang” of tfgamessite in the game engine RPG Maker VX. The game features ‘transformations’. It is a ‘discover the game-over sequence’ type of transformation adventure RPG game, where the primary goal is to ‘see what happens’ when you do ‘x’, whatever ‘x’ may be. You can run around, talk to NPCs, though even that sometimes results in a game-over.

Upon encountering a game-over, the protagonist of the game is often transformed in some way, it be physically, mentally or both. The game features a ton of identity deaths, where the protagonist has no clue if they ever lived even differently upon receiving a transformation.


According to the developer, the game features 39 endings that you can discover, but it is more complicated than that. They’re not numbered properly and it also excludes the variations of End 19.
I’ll list out the endings in the game without spoilers:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 9, 11, 11, 13, 14, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 18, 19 A, 19 B, 19 C, 19 D, 19 E, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38 and 39
End 18: Child’s Play is excluded even though that is in the code, because it is unreachable. (Practically it is disabled and replaced with End 16, which has a different name).
So we have a grand total of 43 Endings.


The following transformations are playable characters:
“BlueBoard”, “BroadMaid”, “BunnyHunny”, “Magical Girl”
You can also play a Child Variant of the protagonist unchanged and BlueBroad.
There is also the option of changing into a mermaid, so long you play either the Default form, BlueBroad or BroadMaid.

Transforming the protagonist results in mental and behavioral changes and as you can expect, a number of endings are specific to a specific form. (Perhaps this is too due to their ‘newfound nature’.) One highly praised feature that I too like is that a lot of the dialogue interactions with many NPCs change once the protagonist is transformed. The only exception to this are the mermaid forms. (It seems like the developer forgot to implement anything with these forms and due to this, these forms are entirely meaningless to use, just eye appeal.)


The game features one-time events and one-time locations with extremely important key items that are needed to reach a specific ending and there is no warning on this whatsoever, meaning; a reason you may get stuck is because you already did something and can no longer go back there to pick something up from there.

You could say that these one-time things are lethal choices. One such lethal choice is which “difficulty” you select to enter the flower garden. Both Normal and Hard have treasure that you may need, but you cannot get both. Make sure you save before picking one of these choices. Oh wait, you don’t know when this pops up. See, there is the issue.

Another one worth mentioning is when you get forced into the kitchen simply because you interacted with a specific NPC. This one action locks you out of both the kitchen and the maid transformation. There is one other action that also locks you out of the maid transformation, which is talking to the priest to change back into the default form. As to why I am spoiling this, it’s because there are two crucial items you can only get while you’re transformed into a maid. You’ll be locked out of half of the game if not more, if you don’t have them.


I could have listed all the bugs I encountered but I decided not to. In my opinion, the backend is so messy it needs a complete do-over.



My ratings:
Story: .. well, it depends on the ending. So it’s kind of a joke and hard to say. Like, it makes you laugh maybe, but it’s not very deep, or is it?
Gameplay: It’s okay. It’s just that I found 4 spots where I got stuck in an endless loop, but- it’s okay. You can walk on paintings, through some objects, need to stand on a specific tile and hit the action button to travel to another room, but it’s okay.
Code: ……. It works I guess, but omg I shouldn’t have looked.
Optimization: ………………… no.
Organization: …. There is some, I guess.
Unused resources: ….
Sound selection: I like silence, so very good, for me at least. Its not intrusive, very minimalistic. Nice.
Sound timing: Good
Animation timing (magic/emote effects): Could also use improvement, usually it’s a bit off.
Animation location (magic/emote effects): ..also off, very often not focused on the right spot.
Animated events (chests/doors/etc.): diffidently needs improvement.
World design: Okay, but questionable, although the game itself jokes about this.

I think I’ll give it a 7.
It’s a finished game, it’s enjoyable and you’ll laugh every now and then, but its buggy. It’s also not overly interesting to be honest, especially not the backend. The bugs and mistakes are a score killer. It’s also a kind of hard to puzzle through without a piece of paper to note things down upon and getting ‘locked out’ of a key item is bothersome. The game requires a lot of starting over and testing to get to specific places and endings, so is no inviting flow, especially with the harder to reach endings.
But it’s a good game none the less. Well done entertaining me. ;p



Tips for the developer:
Please fix the code. It’s not done when it works. It’s done when it’s good. xD
In all seriousness, please organize next time. You use variables instead of switches which saves memory, but all of that memory saving is lost when you have images of kilobytes you don’t use, or unnecessary conditional branches or whole pages of code you don’t use at all. I mean even with those variables, you assign values you in the same flow of events change without using the changed value or, assign values you don’t call later to check or use at all. There is a ton of unused code between the mess like that. Name things properly, keep notes, comment, that way you don’t confuse yourself and it’s much easier to fix bugs. And don’t leave conditional branches there that you don’t use. (Yes, there are a number of cases where both IF and Else check and result in the same) omg-

I can tell more was planned, but—I guess you lost track of your own coded mess
A lot of the events you created are just there to overlap tiles too. You can do that with the tile editor as well. Naming events helps finding the right event.
An event page is just another conditional branch. Page 2 will take priority, unless Page 2 is locked behind a condition, then it goes to Page 1. Use common events or switches so that you don’t need to copy/paste the same entire event with slight changes.

Enough with the tips I guess.


Review by Dannyson97
Version reviewed: 1.0.0 on 2022-01-24 20:30:32

Fucking GAME OVER YEAAAAAHHH!!!

writing this drunk.

 

A funny self aware RPG puzzlw game with TFs littered through out. You will say F"UCK" every time you stumble across a bad ending, but will  laugh. A lot of different dialouge based on your state. JELLYJAMMING? A few gltches like JELLY JAMMING not ending the game. Great she's dead. Some parts seem incomplete like some characters just not interacting wih you but imediealtly able to tell about the detail that went into the game.

While the game is not as poshied and borderline parody of RPGs the games in general the game doesn't take itself too seriously which you'll find fairly quickly. Can't tell whats a a mechanic or a glitch. Talked to a lady after pressing abutton and they don't exist aymore.

No music is a bit of a downer. actually has Ulquiorra from Bleach.  You'll have fun exploring the game and the various endings,


Review by aaronexe
Version reviewed: 1.0.0 on 2015-08-15 00:01:52

GAME OVER YEEEEEAHHHHH!!!!!! Sadly the game seems to of been lost and no one seems to have it anymore.....


Review by Gregnes2000
Version reviewed: 1.0.0 on 2014-05-28 17:14:05

One thing sold this game for me..Game over, YEEEAH!!!!


Review by livemansleeping
Version reviewed: 1.0.0 on 2014-05-28 02:27:45

This game is Bizarre!  Really weird.

 

Although the 'ok there you are, go' aspect of it i find very interesting, Clearly this was just sort of thrown together, but i quite like the style, It could use more character aspects, along with more non-game-over transmformations that would modify them.