Edit on August 30th, 2012: This post was done way back in April when the game was still wholly incomplete and new. It had an immense amount of balancing issues and required insane amounts of grinding for levelling and money. As subsequent updates pretty much didn’t address a lot of the issues I’ve pointed out, I’ve since uninstalled the game. I have no idea how things improved or degraded with the recent updates nor do I care since I’ve given up on Forgotten Tales.
I recommend people to read the comments that other players left for more up-to-date guidance. The developer has also made a forum so you can check there for hints and information on bugs and such: http://forgotten-tales.boardonly.com/
While on my quest to find fun and engaging Android games to play, I came across Forgotten Tales which seemed decent from screenshots and with a near 5-star rating from 80+ users, I figure it was worth a shot. But after some quality time with it, I’m finding it difficult to understand how in all hell people could give the game anything beyond 2 or 3 stars. I take it they’re all just masochists with really low expectations. Here’s my experience so far:
WALKTHROUGH OF THE VERY BEGINNING + TIPS
It’s not difficult to figure out the controls although I can’t fathom why anyone would want to play the game on the default speed. I always have it at double speed because everything moves so dreadfully slow to me. (I’m using a Galaxy Tab 10.1.) At first, the game really did seem decent. I tried out the little dungeon that was southeast of the Forester and took out some skeletons. I freaked out a little that they could move so much faster than my character but after 2 or 3 battles, I managed to jet and get out of there alive. Your character regenerates health automatically so I had him stand around for a bit. Once the health bar was back in the green, I travelled southwest to Kedington Village.
An odd thing about the NPCs (non-player characters) in this game is that, although you get the little speech balloon icon if you move your cursor over them, they have NOTHING to say! Even more strange is the fact that these NPCs can disappear from the area all together if you return at a later time. Anyway, the only ones that will even acknowledge your existence are the ones that have a little question mark icon next to them.
The first character I spoke to was a man standing around in the southwest part of the village. He gives you the quest to deliver a message to his brother, a gravedigger, in the southern village/town of Ashdown. Shouldn’t be too difficult, right? RIGHT??? (Oh yeah, at some point, you can talk to the woman (possibly a hooker?) in Kedington. After you do your thing with her, you get 25 XP or something.)
Unfortunately, unless you a) did some grinding with the skeletons in the aforementioned dungeon to get enough spoils and money to afford armor and a better weapon, and b) you save like crazy, there’s a very good chance that you will DIE on the way there. For one thing, the highway bandit (the guy with a green cape) can overpower you easily if you didn’t beef up beforehand. You may also run into the ever-so-terrible-predicament of being attacked by a giant mob of spiders, wolves, and more highway bandits all at the same time. Although this is not a common occurrence, spiders DO frequently come after you if you’re within the vicinity of the signpost north of the guardhouse near Ashdown.
Oh yeah, there’s a party member with my character in that screenshot. (The member = the other guy with a giant grey oval under him.) I’ll get to this in the next paragraph. 😄
In Ashdown, I ran into some random guy that wanted to join forces with me to take out some mean orcs that took over the mines in the east. Cool. A party member! Maybe I won’t have to worry so much about dying all the time now. Afterwards, I chucked the letter at the gravedigger and it was off to the mines for orc hunting.
Alas, after about a minute of slashing, the one orc I encountered at the mines still wasn’t dead. Instead, my character was the only one taking damage. That’s when I decided to simply reload the bloody game.
So now, all I’m doing is running around and grinding because it takes 300 XP to get to level 3. I only mention the experience because enemies that I can actually kill only give around 2 XP. All I can hope for is that they drop gold or things I can sell. I’m not sure why wolves keep dropping their “fungs” because all they do is take up space in inventory as you can’t sell them.
Forgotten Tales is a definite work in progress. At the moment, it has extreme balancing issues and a terrible lack of direction for players. I’m all for open world games and exploration but I also like to be able to SURVIVE in them. It’s actually kind of puzzling why it was released to the public in its current state. It would make a bit more sense if it had the word “BETA” slapped onto the end.
Back to the topic of survival, see the red-headed asshole in the screen below? You try and take him down at level 2 with default equipment, or hell, even the first armor “set” and a Sabre AND with your faithful companion from Ashdown by your side. Good fucking luck.
I’ve played my fair share of Western, Japanese, and Korean RPGs — both single player and massively multiplayer online — and generally, there’s something known as game progression. Typically, you can’t access areas with enemies that you can’t handle due to level, capabilities, etc. until you fulfil certain requirements like advancing the plot. I’m not entirely sure there really IS a story in Forgotten Tales but regardless, it ignores any sort of logical continuity and allows you to innocently wander into these particular areas.
To add insult to injury, these said areas are immediately east AND west to the goddamn fucking SECOND village.
In order to take on the enemies, you essentially either need to level up — which takes forever due to the low experience points enemies give — or grind until you have enough money to afford better equipment. Speaking about equipment, here’s a hilarious screenshot:
This is from the shop in the SECOND village. I take it there aren’t many settlements and such in the game so this place probably doubles as “the town that’s before a late game dungeon” as well. At the pace the game is going at, I can tell you that it will be agony to even rack up 1000 pieces of gold.
Another annoyance is that NPCs don’t repeat dialogue nor speak to you again. Some of them do if you return to them after you finish the request they made. However, if you just so happened to accidentally click out of a conversation because enemies started swarming you while you were talking to someone, you won’t ever know what the hell the person was chatting about unless you reload the game.
Finally, random enemy mobs. It’s not like I’m fleeing from monsters and then running into another group of them. My party is simply walking along the cobblestone path and then BAM! Monsters from literally all directions just come out of no where and charge directly toward it. As mentioned before, this isn’t something that happens often but the fact that it can still happen is kind of frustrating and shouldn’t even be a possibility.