Have you ever watched television with either a very young child or an asinine adult? The kind of fellow creature that would sit down with you right when your favorite show started, take the remote from you discretely, and proceed to mute the television at random intervals for random lengths of time? Playing Infinite Undiscovery is a roughly analogous experience. There are many cutscenes in the game. Many of them have voiced dialog. Many more (particularly in the begining) do not. The english dub is so bad that the only way to really follow the plot with vomitting is to read the subtitles–and only the subtitles. I can only imagine that the Japanese version is better voiced, but it’s a shame the English-language version doesn’t allow us to hear it.
Despite the many, many flaws, I must admit that Infinite Undiscovery is one nice looking game–if you don’t look too closely. The first few areas you’ll find yourself in (a dungeon and a forest) are surprisingly hideous. The dungeon is extremely bland and the forest is absurdly dark and narrow, and both are nearly unnavigable. Fortunately things start to look better–much better–once you step out into the light of day.
The lighting effects are fairly good for an RPG. Human animations can be pretty clunky for most NPCs, but the primary characters–especiall Capell–have some of the best body-animation I’ve seen. Early on in the game Capell is forced to carry Aya (the heroine I mentioned briefly, earlier) through a large area. Aya is held in Capell’s arms, and her body and hair sways and moves with a very realistic weight to it. It looks fantastic. The textures and visual effects are really cool to watch–especially when running in and out of shadows. For the most part, Infinite Undiscovery is one nice-looking game–but the quality is, again, inconsistent. While Capell and Aya may have excellent animations, many NPCs are horrendously awkward when moving about, and will gesticulate wildly at the slightest provocation. It’s a rather disconcerting discrepancy, and does a lot to pull the player out of the game’s world.
The art design is absolutely stunning–particularly the attention payed to massive, grandiose architecture. The massive tower seen in the opening cinematic, for instance, was one of the single most impressive designs I’d eve seen in a game. Buildings, towns, and cities are incredibly imaginative and instill a sense of true wonder–coupled with the poignant imagery of the fettered moon, Infinite Undiscovery evokes a strong sense of the fantastical; it feels like a fairy tale. Most of the fun I’ve had in the game stemmed simply from walking around the world and looking. The areas are well-crafted, and I almost felt like a little kid once more, eagerly exploring an unknown realm that exceeded the bounds of my imagination.
The biggest question any gamer should have about Infinite Undiscovery is fairly simple. By now, you surely understand that it’s not a great game, it’s not even a good game–but, in the end, is it a game worth playing?
Allow me to say yes. Don’t imagine a firm voice: imagine something like a whisper, quivering with hesitation. It’s an interesting game, but unless you’re a big fan of the RPG genre (as I am) you’re probably better off avoiding this title. At the moment, you could pick up any other RPG available for the Xbox 360 and walk away with a better, more complete experience. In the end, Infinite Undiscovery is a tragic mess of terrible ideas implemented perfectly, and fantastic ideas falling limp. For every glimmer of promise, there are three gut-wrenching flaws. By all means, Infinte Undiscovery should have been a spectacular title. In fact, you can sometimes catch a glimpse of that spectacular possibility while you play, but it constantly falls short—it perpetually disappoints and infinitelly underwhelms.
Though the environments are bland and NPC animation is atrocious, combat animation is very good and the overall art-design is breathtaking.
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Sometimes you can have fun, most of the time you'll be irritated. You generally know whether or not you can defeat an enemy within the first five seconds of combat.
The music is decent, but the English dub is absolutely, inexcusably horrid--and many of the early scenes in the game simply aren't dubbed at all.
There are a few extras to tempt players to re-play through the game, but the tedious combat, shoddy writing, and lackluster delivery will prevent many gamers from sticking with the game longer than one hour.
Infinite Undiscovery is a shamelessly mediocre game. If you're not in the mood for anything special, noteworthy or memorable, give it a shot. If you're looking to have some fun, look elsewhere.