The first episode has been released. Has anyone played it?

#1 Posted by mikeeegeee (1575 posts) -

I guess I've noticed this one sort of peripherally for a while, kind of hoping to read more about it. It turns out that the first episode was released in December (http://kentuckyroutezero.com/) for $7. Has anyone played it yet that can offer any commentary?

#2 Edited by AssInAss (2714 posts) -

I just heard about this from the IGF nominations. Haven't played it yet.

I like the very sharp polygon Out of this World aesthetic.

#3 Posted by bucky (116 posts) -

I just finished it earlier today and I really loved it. It's somewhat short (I finished it inone 2-3 hour sitting,) but it's absolutely beautiful and weird and magical in every way possible.

#4 Posted by Genkkaku (738 posts) -

That's good to hear, just saw the trailer and wanted to pick up the full package anyways..

#5 Posted by CloningMishap (3 posts) -

I just finished Act I and, like bucky said, it's a relatively short experience but a very interesting one.

A few observations:

1. In a similar way to Home, your dialog choices shape the story. After making a choice like "I'm okay, but I'll be a little slow.", suddenly my character walked with a bit of a limp. I'm not certain that picking the other choices wouldn't have resulted in this as well but it seems likely that dialog choices influence little moments like this. You also get to use dialog choices to shape your character's background. Whether these choices are tracked (I hope so) and how much bearing they have on the future remains to be seen. Even if they only influence my knowledge and impression of the character, they were still cool.

2. There aren't a lot of locations in Act I but what's there looks fantastic. The world, designed to be mostly flat with that flat shading you've seen in the trailer, seems to have been built in 3D which leads to a lot of cool dynamic lighting affects and a few zooms and pans that look really nice. One effect zooming into a tv was particularly impressive.

3. The website wasn't lying when it said this was not a difficult puzzle game. The environmental interactions can hardly be classified as puzzles at all. The enjoyment comes from wandering around the environments, seeing how your character interacts with others, and experiencing interesting (and a little Twin Peaks-ish) vignettes. A sizable portion of the game is spent navigating a minimalist road map filled with little points of interest you can experience choose-your-own-adventure (text-only) style. While I could have gone for more environments to actually *see*, the little events are all well-written and contributed a lot to the feeling of uneasiness I had while playing.

If you're on the fence about buying this, ask yourself if you're the kind of person that can appreciate an experience more focused on style, atmosphere, and dialog than substantive gameplay. If that's you, you will enjoy Act I. I'm definitely in for the rest.

Oh, and when you're riding the tram, turn the lights off.

#6 Posted by rpwll (85 posts) -

I very much enjoyed the first act and can't wait for the next four. Regarding player choice shaping the story, I had the same feelings towards the start of the game but then, after the cave in, when I was asked if I was alright, I was given a choice between saying I was fine or that my leg was caught. I chose to say that I was fine but my leg was pinned anyway.

#7 Posted by Reisz (1522 posts) -

I was very excited about this when I first saw a trailer last year, I had no Idea the first part would be out already, excellent news, many thanks. I plan to check this out immediately.

#8 Edited by AssInAss (2714 posts) -


Good lord, is this spooky. The mine is amazing. Turn off the light and move around, FUCKING CREEPY. Strong start for 2013 adventure games. This is something very special. I suggest if you're in for a quiet, mysterious road adventure with the atmosphere of a ghost story, play this and don't spoil yourself.


The lighting, audio design, and camera work, oh man.


When you're on the road and exploring, going to new places, it becomes a text adventure in a very cool way where all the focus is given to audio. When you visit the church and figure out where the choir singing is coming from, you'll know what I'm talking about.

How did you figure out the poem password on the computer? My way was "Wheels slide down...nobody saw the accident...the lights whine."

The dialogue choices have a twist, where you can speak for more than one character. I thought that was cool, where I was creating Conway and Shannon's personalities on the fly. Also, controlling Shannon was cool even for the few seconds you get. I kept the twenty-sided die for myself, wonder if that has any effect? I wonder what talking to your dog does? Maybe just for character building? What's all this talk of a basketball game?

I listened to the bluegrass band all the way through, the lyrics were more foreboding than I expected. Did the person who walks past as the camera is zooming into the Marquez Farmhouse freak anyone out? I'm guessing it was one of the bluegrass players.

Made a *SPOILER* GIF *SPOILER* of the mines moment.

Did you spin the mine cart all three times around and go back and forth? So there's some water on the left. Looks like the place was an underground recording studio for folk music archivists?

Episode 1 ends on the perfect moment where the camera zooms in and then you're waiting for the zoom back. Because of all the disappearing people, you hope when it zooms back that at least Shannon is real.
#9 Posted by PurpleMoustache (108 posts) -

Quick question: I played it yesterday on the Mac version, and the game quit itself after the fade to black after it zooms into The Zero. Is it supposed to do that? Mac versions of stuff like this usually bugs and problems, so I'm curious if there is more, or if thats it.

Anyway, its incredibly good. I bought the whole season up front and I'm glad I did. I just wish part 2, 3, 4, and 5 were all out NOW, instead of "sometime later this year"

#10 Posted by AssInAss (2714 posts) -

@PurpleMoustache said:

Quick question: I played it yesterday on the Mac version, and the game quit itself after the fade to black after it zooms into The Zero. Is it supposed to do that?

Yes. A bit abrupt, would have liked a "to be continued" like Walking Dead but I don't mind.

Quick Look tomorrow!

https://twitter.com/patrickklepek/status/288772845721497600

Also, Nels Anderson (lead designer of Mark of the Ninja, my favorite game of 2012) likes it.

#11 Edited by DJJoeJoe (1329 posts) -

I went ahead and bought this already, one of those games that the style kinda outweighs any sort of lack of interest in genre for me. I don't play traditional adventure games, but I fucking love games that look pretty.

EDIT: Just finished the Act 1, and yea it ends by the game quiting out haha... oh well. Dude this was pretty rad, even though it literally took me exactly 1 hour to travel through it, it's length worked well and was satisfying.

PS: FXAA works via the NVIDIA Control Panel... if you wanna get rid of those massive jaggies. I didn't test it but I also threw on a large amount of standard AA through there as well just in case, not sure of that also worked on this Unity engine game (might have?). Hard to tell cause FXAA generally does a fine job either way.

PPS: Normal AA works well... as well. :)

@AssInAss said:

Did you spin the mine cart all three times around and go back and forth? So there's some water on the left. Looks like the place was an underground recording studio for folk music archivists?

Did you turn the lights out and listen to the audio from the speaker in that area? It's very distorted.

#12 Posted by buttle826 (124 posts) -

Hey guys, I just finished ep. 1 myself. I loved it. It definitely created a great sense of place. Sucked me in right from the start

@CloningMishap said:

Oh, and when you're riding the tram, turn the lights off.

I didn't even think to do that... Oh well, gives me an excuse to play it again

#13 Posted by 9999dmg (132 posts) -

I loved it, definitely getting a more southern Twin Peaks vibe from it. The way you unfold the narrative and back-story by controlling dialogue options from multiple characters is really cool.

#14 Posted by mracoon (4976 posts) -

Literally just finished it, thought it may have crashed for a second after the game auto-quit at the end. Overall, a really good first episode that sets up your character and the tone of the world. I especially like when you controlled the dialogue of both Conway and Shannon while they're having a conversation with each other. Never seen that done in a game before and I can see it leading to some very interesting situations. Definitely not for everyone but if you can appreciate a game where you soak in the atmosphere and don't have any real 'challenges' then it's well worth $7.

Moderator
#15 Posted by Reisz (1522 posts) -

Just finished chapter I as well, played maybe 5 minutes last night and was just as impressed as I had hoped I'd be from that first trailer. Did anyone go to the bait shop instead of back to weavers place? I'm loving the overworld style road map, sets up a bigger sense of the world than I expected to get starting out with such an intimate presentation for the rest of the game. I wish I'd found a place for Carrington's gig.

Now to see what the lads thought of it in that quick look.

#16 Edited by MjHealy (1866 posts) -

Picked this up after the IGF nominations and just finished. Very neat, little game. Some of the best use of audio I've seen in some time and I'm surprised at how it makes me interested in a genre I usually ignore (text adventures). Loved the ending when it suddenly cut to black and quit. It also captured the kind of atmosphere I loved in Sword & Sworcery. Really looking forward to Act II.

#17 Edited by Fredddi43 (352 posts) -

Anybody who played it or watched the Quick Look know who made that awesome music the band plays? Its at the 20:00 mark in the Quick Look and I like it a lot! Couldn't find anything on the site or Google though...

Edit: Nevermind, I should really learn to read sometimes. The band that plays this is called The Bedquilt Ramblers and the music is some covers of older songs. You get the Soundtrack if you purchase all Acts in advance. I recommend it, the music is great for people who love Country and similar Folk.

#18 Posted by talldude124 (5 posts) -

Anybody know the system requirements for this? Usually don't play PC games because my computer isn't great but this looks fantastic and simple enough that it might run for me.

#19 Posted by killacam (1286 posts) -

Everyone go greenlight this!

#20 Edited by PurpleMoustache (108 posts) -

@killacam said:

Anybody know the system requirements for this? Usually don't play PC games because my computer isn't great but this looks fantastic and simple enough that it might run for me.

Very minimal.

Its built in Unity and barely has much 3D stuff that Unity can do going on. I think the only official requirement is: Graphics Shader 3.

I ran it on an old iMac in which the graphics card, which used to run TF2 at 60, but now it runs at 12 due to driver issues, and not being supported by anything anymore, and I got what seemed to be a solid 60.

@talldude124

You don't have to anymore! Its a IGF finalist, and VALVe made a deal with the IGF Foundation saying that all finalists will get free rides on the Steam Train.

#21 Posted by AssInAss (2714 posts) -

@talldude124 said:

Anybody know the system requirements for this? Usually don't play PC games because my computer isn't great but this looks fantastic and simple enough that it might run for me.

Practically any computer can run this. Don't worry :)

I didn't get to see the guys dragging the airplane from the quick look, damn!

#22 Posted by Reisz (1522 posts) -

I was just adding to the wiki page for this and had to double check some details on Kickstarter, check out it's original pitch video(spoilers? it has character names and a view of the zero though it has changed a LOT) It's a completely different game! Great example of design evolution.

#23 Posted by Hoffafiles (285 posts) -

I had forgot about this, seems I voted for the greenlight awhile back.

Nice to see the quicklook, and I can't wait to play it now!

#24 Posted by gaminghooligan (1478 posts) -

Just finished it. Did anyone go back to the gas station after you leave the mine? I did and saw something suspicious but was afraid I had skipped something at Weaver's house, so I left and went there first only to finish the episode and didn't get to go back. Might do another playthrough tomorrow. Also I went ahead and did the complete set, I hope this soundtrack features more of that sweet bluegrass. Gotta say, being from WV and driving through KY all the time this hit a real sweet spot for me, can't wait for the next one.

Online
#25 Posted by DJJoeJoe (1329 posts) -

It bothered me that the soundtrack has no art for it... so I put some text on an image I captured from the game within the Act I so my music can look pretty again! Figured maybe 1 other person might appreciate it as well.

#26 Posted by AssInAss (2714 posts) -

@gaminghooligan said:

Just finished it. Did anyone go back to the gas station after you leave the mine? I did and saw something suspicious but was afraid I had skipped something at Weaver's house, so I left and went there first only to finish the episode and didn't get to go back. Might do another playthrough tomorrow. Also I went ahead and did the complete set, I hope this soundtrack features more of that sweet bluegrass. Gotta say, being from WV and driving through KY all the time this hit a real sweet spot for me, can't wait for the next one.

Are you talking about Carrington, the antler pseudoscience dude? Or some other suspicious thing?

#27 Edited by gaminghooligan (1478 posts) -

@AssInAss said:

@gaminghooligan said:

Just finished it. Did anyone go back to the gas station after you leave the mine? I did and saw something suspicious but was afraid I had skipped something at Weaver's house, so I left and went there first only to finish the episode and didn't get to go back. Might do another playthrough tomorrow. Also I went ahead and did the complete set, I hope this soundtrack features more of that sweet bluegrass. Gotta say, being from WV and driving through KY all the time this hit a real sweet spot for me, can't wait for the next one.

Are you talking about Carrington, the antler pseudoscience dude? Or some other suspicious thing?

possibly, is that the other guy that's out front of the station when you go back with Shannon? If so that's what I saw, I figured I could come right back so I didn't inspect.

@DJJoeJoe: Thx for that, I was trying to find some coverart and that is perfect.

Online
#28 Posted by AssInAss (2714 posts) -

@gaminghooligan said:

@AssInAss said:

@gaminghooligan said:

Just finished it. Did anyone go back to the gas station after you leave the mine? I did and saw something suspicious but was afraid I had skipped something at Weaver's house, so I left and went there first only to finish the episode and didn't get to go back. Might do another playthrough tomorrow. Also I went ahead and did the complete set, I hope this soundtrack features more of that sweet bluegrass. Gotta say, being from WV and driving through KY all the time this hit a real sweet spot for me, can't wait for the next one.

Are you talking about Carrington, the antler pseudoscience dude? Or some other suspicious thing?

possibly, is that the other guy that's out front of the station when you go back with Shannon? If so that's what I saw, I figured I could come right back so I didn't inspect.

@DJJoeJoe: Thx for that, I was trying to find some coverart and that is perfect.

Yeah. Oh man you missed out on some really funny writing!

#29 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

The QL has totally sold me on KR0. I'll be picking it up tomorrow.

#30 Edited by ViktorWithAK (30 posts) -

Really enjoyed the game, looking forward to more episodes. But I have a spoiler question below.

So the episode ended kind of weird for me, they drive into the Zero and then the game just quit out of the application, that was supposed ot happen right?, also the venue guy, was I supposed to find a location in this episode or does that come later?.

#31 Posted by JJWeatherman (14562 posts) -

@DJJoeJoe: I noticed that, too. Thanks for this.

#32 Posted by DJJoeJoe (1329 posts) -

@ViktorWithAK: Yes it ends abruptly in that way, weirdly I 'think' my recordings of the game end slightly more smoothly with the music panning out and the screen going black for a bit, but yes while actually playing it felt like it crashes almost. Just a weird thing, might be a slight bug but eitherway the intended 'end' is pretty much as is, maybe half a second is cut off due to this possible bug and is attributing to a more pronounced sense of a poor polish job on the ending.

#33 Posted by beard_of_zeus (1705 posts) -

@ViktorWithAK: @DJJoeJoe: Alright, I wasn't sure if it was just me that felt like my game crashed. It ended very abruptly for me after you go back to the farmhouse with Shannon and fix the TV, then as you are staring out the window again, you see the antiques truck driving away. Then the application just closes. It freaked me out!

Thanks for corroborating with me on this.

#34 Posted by OKJT (16 posts) -

This just got the Greenlit on Steam. Thanks to all the duders who made it happen.

#35 Posted by T00MuchSteeze (163 posts) -

This game seems really creepy at times. I you watched the Quick Look, do you agree? I'm going to be grabbing the Mac version this week. Can't wait.

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