Normally, this would be the part where I try to lighten the mood because I’m about to start off on a rant that will make me question the dental floss that connects my mind to this reality. However, this has not been a ‘JP Relaxes on the Porch with Iced Tea’ Weekend. I make REALLY good Iced Tea when the weather is nice.
Regardless, we must first go over DA RULES! “A Quick Look At” IS NOT an official review! It is simply me relaying my experience with a demo or another short EVN. I have to knock it all out within 1000 words and there will be no score. That’s just my opinion of where everything stands. So, let’s get this pain train on the road, shall we? This is Devil Gene R!
In the world of Devil Gene R, the world has been in constant conflict for over one thousand years between the factions of two different gods: one apparently good and one evil. A biological weapon, capable of wearing skimpy skirts and push-up bras, was discovered and with it, the Dark God’s side was defeated. YEARS later, the man responsible for the creation of the ‘Devil Gene’ (the bio weapon) has decided to use his discovery to take over the world for the evulz unless they are stopped by…someone.
As basic and, frankly, boring as the premise is, you don’t get any of it during the actual demo. In reality, if you want that basic knowledge, you’ll have to check out the Story section of the official website! However, the deep dive into the lore of the story doesn’t yield much more than what I just gave you so, there you go. While you cannot expect a demo to show you everything, the fact that it ignores its own plot removes any direction it could have had. We, as an audience are left to wander through this mess, trying to figure out where we are, what’s happened to the world and why Dark Androgynous Heroine #352 is in the middle of the damn desert. ‘Lazy’ doesn’t even begin to cover this story.
And since we already mentioned Dark Androgynous Heroine #352, let’s start there. Raven is her name and the only thing she loves is her MOTORCYCLE. Raven is also the unholy Frankenstein of every bad shonen stereotype you can think of without any of the charm or courage that makes a shonen hero likable. Her total idiocy not only leads her into a city with no guarantee she’s walking into a trap, but after coming across a person she’s never seen before, her EXACT reaction is to get pissed off, THEN instigate a fight. Why? Because she’s a badass loner who is tough! And dark!
This is why she loses the fight!
DGR employs a wheel-based combat system where the success of your attacks is determined by stopping a pendulum on a certain spot of the wheel. As tedious as it can be, there is no denying the joy you feel when you see an attack actually land and do major damage. However, twenty minutes later, you find out that none of the attacks worked and White-Haired Androgynous Girl ends up winning. So, not only have we completely wasted our time with a fight scene that didn’t matter, but Raven has become more annoying as a protagonist because she can’t back up her own dumb mouth. Why, in the bluest of blue Hells, should we want to play an action game with a character that is not only completely unlikable, but also WEAK?!
The strangest thing about all of this is that I think the writer agrees with me. Instead of following Raven the entire demo, we switch to White-Haired Androgynous Girl, named Gao, who’s dressed like a blind clown (although saying her outfit is the worst in the game is a stretch) as she returns home to her Father and the rest of the family. This scene is in the same vein as the rest of the demo, only now we get Gao drooling over a fox girl and other annoying human/animal hybrids taking up screen time sniping at one another. How loudly do you think I can say ‘THIS IS POINTLESS’ before I wake the dead?
The demo also had a voice cast and, to be honest, I have nothing against them. After reading the tomes that make up the backstory while going through two demos of this thing, I don’t think Andrea Romano could make this thing sound entertaining. But if they didn’t take it so seriously, it would go a long way of easing the pain of playing the demo. I would also comment about the art, but my lack of comment so far pretty much says it all I think.
Finally, I’d be remised if I didn’t point out that this demo is the result of two years of work from the team. Devil Gene R was originally conceived and crowd-funded in 2012. The original demo was awful since all it provided was an info-dumps on the lore, while the main couple of the game, and I KNOW they’re going to be a couple thanks to the menu screen, went through the typical ‘I hate you because we’re from two different worlds, BUT eventually my hatred will be replaced by sexual tension’ cycle that infests bad writing for some reason. The fact that after two years and over $3,000, the only thing this team has to show is this incomprehensible fecal matter should be a red flag to anyone who has shown them even a moment of passing interest.
Devil Gene R’s demo committed several cardinal writing sins, but that still doesn’t quite explain what a mess this thing is. I don’t think I enjoyed a single sentence of this game. On the upside, I guess it has plenty room to improve. If you just want to play it yourself here you go, but you’ve been warned. JP3: OUT!
Edited By Youkos!