Further Thoughts: The Path

You can run, it’s just not actually mentioned anywhere in the game. Hold down W at the same time you hold the left mouse button. Or the right mouse button. One of the two.
I don’t like the font the ‘loading’ text is written in. Happily, this doesn’t appear often, and it’s a minor and, honestly, rather pointless dislike.
I guess the screenshots are favourable, as the graphical options are all on their highest settings here. Maybe it’s the colour settings I’m using, though. I’m heading home in a few days, so I’ll see how the other computer copes with it.

Miniview: The Path (PC)

I love:
…the atmosphere, and exploration. I don’t know how large the woods are, yet, but tomorrow – when I have enough time for the snail’s pace paces – I’ll get to it. Even just walking along the path seems fairly… not realistic, but true to life? Seedlets float on the wind, insects can be heard in the grass, and birds occasionally fly past, or land on the path nearby.
…how the game handles interaction. The controls in general, really; hold the mouse-button to walk. Move the mouse to turn. Let go to stop. Let go near something your character of choice will interact with – different for each of them – and they’ll do something. Fairly simple, very easy to pick up.

I like:
…getting a rank at the end of the journey. It might seem rather mundane, but… yeah. You get ranked. You get told how many things you’ve missed. I, (un)fortunately, am a gamer; I like knowing I’m getting somewhere, working towards something. This doesn’t really spoil anything – it doesn’t tell you what there IS to find, just that there are things out there that you haven’t seen.

I loathe:
…the walking speed. I know why it’s slow, but that doesn’t stop me from wishing it were at least a little quicker. Though it is nice seeing a walking animation that doesn’t slide over the floor one way or another.
…the lack of footsteps, talking of walking. For all the other effects the game has, it’s very strange that there’s no sound for footsteps. It’s not too obvious on a dirt path, but once you hit something different, it’s very strange walking silently with a cricket in the background, and a girl humming.
…the screenshots. Nothing to do directly with the game, but it looks far prettier in those than on my screen. Maybe I should see if there are settings to poke at, but as is… well, it still looks nice, but not as great as the screenshots suggest.

Verdict:
Tale of Tales’ previous major thing, The Graveyard, was not a game to me; there was no challenge, very little to be discovered in the tiny world, and ‘buying’ the thing just added one possible outcome which didn’t seem any more entertaining than what you get in the free version. You can’t fail… unless you buy it and don’t like it, but that’s more of a metagame, and not a proper loss. I’d call it ‘art’, but… no, still not enjoyable. Appreciable, perhaps, but I prefer even my art to have some kind of interaction. Shadow of the Colossus is more my kind of ‘art’.
The Path, however, is much more like a game than the Graveyard; there are choices, there’s more than one possible outcome, and it’s possible to miss things. You probably still get what you pay for, though. I don’t know if the screenshots in previews were using better settings or something, but I’ll need to check next time I play.

Currently Playing…

…Battle for Wesnoth.
Multiplayer, even. Usually I’m not good at any game played against people, but I’m turning out to be decent at this.

I’ve worked out my best tactic – read, the one I’m best at pulling off, thus far – is to be really annoying with quick units, and temporarily steal villages that I can’t keep, as it still decreases the opponent’s income for their next turn, even if they retake it instantly.
In the best case scenario, they don’t take it back, and I’ve got extra gold each turn.

The Undead, followed by Drakes, are probably best for this, as they have flying units mostly unbothered by terrain. The Knalgan Alliance, though it has a flying unit, is worst out of the ones that can reliably do this, as the unit is much more costly than most others available. The Undead flying unit (Bat) is very cheap at 13 gold, and as it’s still alive, it can pick up traits, unlike most of the other Undead units. Drakes are more expensive, with the cheapest flier (Drake Glider) coming in at 16 or 17 gold, but are much more durable than Bats, so they can sit on villages for longer.
There are a couple of methods to defend against this kind of tactic; leaving your own units on villages so scouts can’t just occupy them – scouts aren’t as capable fighters as others, so they don’t stand much chance of dislodging other units –  but this ties up a fair portion of your units, even if you restrict it to where enemy scouts fly. Keeping a number of high-mobility units around expressly for dislodging scout units is also a decent idea, but depending on what else the enemy is doing, this still ties up units and may prevent them from taking part in the main conflict.

Best-to-Worst Factions, when I’m trying to play them:

Drakes – formerly right at the bottom, as I just couldn’t ever win with them, but something must have clicked with them recently. Brilliant on deserts.
Undead – cheap units with very nice mobility, and handy resistances. Oh, and a glass cannon, too. No healer, though.
Loyalists – well, they’re humans.
Rebels – great in forests, sort of ‘meh’ elsewhere. Saurians get nearly the same bonuses in trees, too.
Northerners – no healer units, and somewhat fragile.
Knalgan Alliance – no healer units, again, and somewhat fragile, again. Plus their scout is horrendously expensive.