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The main strengths of Blurred Line lie in its map design and branching narrative. The maps are structured well, the graphics and sound design are also nice, and so it’s always interesting to wander around. The background details are the best part of experience; picking up Talan’s final paycheck at Delcentric, or the conversations about Lashe City in Sorbe Village are a great reward for poking around. It’s not perfect; overly frequent treasure chests feel very artificial and un-immersive, especially when combined with the too-empty world map. The way some areas (i.e. Theatre or Marshes) can only be accessed on certain playthroughs is great, though, and makes them feel far more valuable.
That element of choice is great in its subtlety; something as simple as choosing whether to take the tram or walk to Delcentric determines your companion for the first half of the game in a way that still feels entirely logical. The choice of profession at Paradise is more obvious, yet its outcomes last for a lot longer than you might expect, and the unique flashbacks at Memnosyne’s house make it worth to replay with different choices. Some choices don’t matter because the game is unfinished, but the thought still counts.
Unfortunately, these choices, and moments of brilliance like the aforementioned flashbacks, are welded into a storyline that’s not actually very good. Even disregarding the lack of a proper conclusion, the game just ending on a huge cliffhanger, there are many plot turns that are jarring, clichéd, or both. I figured out what should’ve been a surprise a couple of hours before it happened, and the actual event came off forced and generic instead of being tragic. The Talan-Emily romance is a rather important element, but its execution is really hit-and-miss.
Finally, the combat side of the game tries hard but still disappoints. On the bright side, there’s enough equipment in the game to rival paid-for RP Gs, and even more enemy types to use them on. However, 90% of the enemies lack skills of any kind and only differ in their stats and the loot they drop. Similarly, some companions literally have only one combat skill of questionable use, and Talan himself takes a long time to permanently absorb some halfway useful spell. Even then, the game is typically too easy to require them, most of the fights end up as boring spacebar-mashing.
Final score: 7/10
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