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Keepsake - the good and the bad
on 23 October 2008
Having just finished Keepsake and having seen the mixed reviews here I thought that it needed some clarification, so here it is.
Keepsake is not a good game, but neither is it a woefully bad one. I'll explain...
The puzzles on the whole are very nice little games. They even have a hint system built in in case you get stuck (which you almost definitely will on some of them as they can be quite obscure as to what you actually have to do). Other than that, they're very enjoyable.
The scenery is very pretty and it can be nice to just wonder around the building... at first (I'll get to that later).
If you pick up an item, a nice touch is that the item actually appears on your character and is actually carried (it doesn't just mysteriously vanish).
And the plot is a gentle tale of friendship (which you very rarely get in games so was refreshing) and has the moral messages of teamwork, friendship, believing in yourself and all the rest (great as a tale for children)
The characters and in particular the voice actors for some of the main characters are really annoying, especially Celeste's voice who seemed to have learnt acting from watching australian soaps. It actually got to the point where I was dreading the cut-scenes because of it.
The dialogue is unnecessarily long and mostly uninteresting and there is very little love you develop for any of the characters because of it.
As for the scenery, nice as it is, the game forces you to walk through it again and again as often and as far as possible in order to complete the puzzles. For instance there is one puzzle where the devices you need to use to work on the same puzzle are at opposite ends of the castle! I mean, why? the puzzle might have been fun otherwise.
The puzzles may be good, but there are too few of them with too much running around in between. Also, your character has the most annoying habit of jumping up and down and applauding herself every time you complete a puzzle.
Also, a minor thing, but one that irritated me is that you can't press escape to bring up the menu (you have to click the button in the bottom corner of the screen). The amount of times I pressed escape anyway are countless.
Some of these pros and cons could easily cause you to either love or hate the game, and that's why I think it's had such bi-polar reviews. Personally, I'm glad to have finished it so that I don't ever have to play it again. But then again, I was determined enough to finish it for the aspects that I did like.
If you don't mind the constant running around and can shut your ears to the dreadful voice-acting and quite like the idea of a non-violent tale of friendship, then this could be the game for you. If not and you think it may irritate you, then don't touch it with a barge pole, you're really not missing enough to make it worth the annoyance.