Even the battle backdrops are animated, making the game feel super alive... not that you can tell from my screenshot.
These arrows are a great way to let you know where doors are... too bad this one doesn't go anywhere yet.
When you're downloading a game blind, it's always kind of like Russian Roulette. No screenshots? That's a bullet in the chamber. New user? That's another bullet. Game's filename doesn't match the title of the gamelisting? You better believe that's a bullet. Fortunately for jamjamin, I'm a risk taker. Let's talk about Ace of Swords.
First thing I noticed, after the three bullets of the gamelisting was that Jamjamin has a kickin' Moogle avatar. Second thing I noticed was that they didn't include game.exe or anything else in their rar. Usually that'd make me mad, but seeing just a .rpg went a long way in convincing me this wasn't some kind of weird virus. I loaded the game in Beelzebufo and everything seemed to work fine, so if you want to check it out that's how I'd suggest doin' it.
The next thing I noticed was that this game has a bitchin' guitar track on its title screen. No idea if it and the rest of the great music in this thing is ripped or not, but I don't care. It rules. After that, there's inexplicably an eye melting optical illusion. At this point I was pretty sure I had been trolled. Just to be safe, I hit enter and once again was rewarded for my courage.
You play as Tooie, a wild woman? who seemingly spends her time collecting cool junk and talking with mice and butterflies in the woods. She's got a pretty nice setup out there, with video games and easy chairs, even a little rose garden. The tiles here really look amazing, with a style and color scheme all to itself. There's also a huge amount of animated tiles which do a phenomenal job of making the woods seem alive.
When you leave the safety of your corner of the woods, you'll fight birds, bees, rotten apples and coconuts, all variety of weird enemies. These battles are a little bit slow at first, before you find the butterfly healer who is EVEN SLOWER somehow than Tooie. Her healing power is well balanced to the speed, so it's not as big an imposition as it could be and Tooie lands multiple hits consistently which also helps speed things along some. Could still be just a smidge faster, but generally well balanced.
The maps are rather large and sometimes mazelike which makes it hard to say with absolute certainty that I've seen everything. I did find a tree with graffiti tags inside, where I was able to save. That tree continued into a dungeon with a mysterious room that looked like it was made of gold but there wasn't anything there. Another tree took me to a beehive, though I wasn't able to find anything resembling a boss there either.
There's a lot of foreshadowing in this demo, but none of the plot comes up, at least in what I was able to find. Jea, the butterfly, implies that you need to stop some evil bees who're causing trouble in the forest. You even get a helpful reminder note to this effect. That said, I was unable to find any kind of queen bee or other boss battle that would end this quest so I'm assuming that's what Jamjamin meant by "This is just a demonstration of the graphics and music."
They're great graphics and great music (though parts of the music are a little spooky, there's some kind of chanting/talking in the background of the forest theme at the very end that gives me the willies) and are well worth sharing. I'm very interested in where this game is going to go because it looks and sounds GREAT.
There's not quite enough game here to play for fun, but the gamelisting says this is all there's going to be until he gets some guidance and help. Jamjamin, you should DEFINITELY make a thread about this game on the forums, so you can directly ask questions about what's giving you trouble and people can point you in the right direction. This is a fantastic start, and it makes me want to see your other project when it's done. Welcome to the community!