I've got 999 problems, and most of them are with the story.

The suave, daring, unrivaled King of Video Games. He is on an EROTIC quest to see if lesbians indeed have the goods. BEWARE, the Moon.

No, this game has absolutely nothing to do with Holocaust denial. Instead, it's a classic prisoner's dilemma situation given human wrappings...and then wrapped around that is talk about Kurt Vonnegut. And digital roots! And prosopagnosia! And morphic psycho-resonance field sciences! Now do you see what happened as I went on with that? Things just got crazier and crazier, loopier and loopier, for no goddamn reason. Well, in the end, that's exactly what 999 is: a very good idea surrounded by utterly stupid bullshit.

The game begins with a narrative describing the various details of a warmly lit room, awkwardly juxtaposed alongside a college aged student swearing and screaming at the top of his lungs. Eventually, though, he moves past this and into a group of escaped mental patients. After all, their first priority is to look down at the numbered bracelets on their wrists, and their second priority is to spend 90 minutes using them as the basis for dumb code names like Pineapple and O. Henry and Quelitofaximon Supreme. Yes, none of these strange events make a lot of sense, but right now, that's kind of the point. They're under serious pressure and clearly aren't thinking straight, so of course they're going to come up with stupid names. Hell, one of them even uses their actual name as a codename (and I'm not talking about Junpei). But even ignoring these circumstances I most likely made up, I'm still not giving up the overall strangeness these characters have. Their quirky nature makes them more memorable, relateable, likable, and maybe some other positive words that don't end in "-able". Developed and fleshed-out will suffice. Oh, and I might as well add that this even carries over to how the characters are presented. No, I'm not talking about their portraits (although those are good, too), but more the fact that the developers used the text advancing sound to give each character unique voices. How much more identity can they have?

Oh, you mean the funyarnipa? Man, I love that guy.

Good thing, too, because otherwise, I doubt the philosophical aspects behind the game could have succeeded to the extent that they do. I mean, can you ima.....I haven't even explained where the philosophical implications are coming from, have I? It's the prisoner's dilemma thing from before: everybody's playing a math game where cheating results in explosions. Now if we were given nothing more than a collection of generic bumblefucks to play the game, then the dilemma wouldn't hold much weight. After all, I could just write them off as being mentally ill-prepared weaklings, and I don't want to make that mistake again. Fortunately, that never happens. The characters have some level of depth, so it's a lot easier to understand how fucked they can be at any given time, thus lending the whole thought experiment some depth and credibility. I'd follow that up with some other examples of how thought out this one aspect of the story is, but I feel like I'd be rambling on and driving the point way too deep.

Like, you know, the game does with everything I haven't mentioned so far. What? You thought 999 was just the ethical thought experiments? There's so much more to this game. Ice-9! Drowning rats! Bloody Santa (IE plagiarism)! Inaccurate trailers! It's like somebody dropped out of college after their freshman year and decided to mash all their textbooks together into something resembling a plot. And it's here where the game starts to break the eff down. You simply can't have that many ideas on display at once, because none of them are going to receive any focus or purpose. Your best case scenario is that your characters come off as needlessly strange, bringing up Titanic mummies for seemingly no goddamn reason, and then dropping said story as soon as they mentioned it. The middle case scenario is that you leave your audience wanting more. For instance, how does that Titanic stuff tie into the overall story? Never mind that; there's lube behind the cheese. Also, Kurt Vonnegut. To be fair, it may tie into a larger picture later on, but damn if it doesn't come off as scatter-brained and unable to focus.

I'm only gonna post Japanese screenshots in this blog because the story makes so much more sense that way.

Which reminds me: what's the worst case scenario I haven't mentioned yet? The story gets so utterly bloated with gimmicky ideas that you simply can't manage them all at once, and things start breaking down in front of you. I could explore how this plays out, but I believe an example will serve us better. Sort of spoilers follow, for those looking for a warning. Two of our characters (let's say Flapplejack and Nazi Olympics) discover a dead body, and one of them proposes this theory as to how the person died: long ago, an Egyptian priestess was frozen with future technology. I know, but it gets stupider. Somehow, the ice inside her turns into ice-9 (despite the fact that by the story's own logic, this would leave the world so deeply and thoroughly fucked that we should all be coughing up head), allowing her to survive death....somehow. Fast forward several centuries, and archaeologists discover her frozen corpse and decide to carry it across the desert. She doesn't melt (even though Egypt could very easily melt her necrotic ass), and eventually ends up on a Titanic replica where she does melt. Why? No idea. So what does she do when she comes back to life? Crawl through the ship's secret passageways (because, you know, all ships have secret passageways) and randomly murder somebody she's never met for absolutely no reason. How many paint chips do you have to eat to come up with such a dumb idea? And how many more do you have to quaff down to make this seem credible? Granted, this scenario (just barely) turns out to be incorrect, but never once does the narrator or any single character speak up and say, "There are more reasons why that's utterly stupid than there are words to express them."

And don't think that I'm simply picking on this one glaringly stupid plot hole; there are a billion more I could choose from. How did Zero make sure that the contestants in the Nonary Game wouldn't simply shit out their bombs? How does Snake's bracelet detect his heartbeat when the arm he's wearing it on is a fake? How do the endings even function? The most random details in the story seem to change to bend to the will of the ending, even if this opens up a plot hole the size of the Grand Canyon. Let's take a look at bracelet number 9: in one ending, it's super-ultra-vital to have it for the end of the game, yet in another, you can ignore the hell out of it, and in another, it wasn't even a 9 in the first place, but an upside-down six! Yea, that sounds perfectly reconcilable. The True ending (which, I have to admit, has its moments) tries to justify this by tying the bad endings into this, but how do bad endings change things that were very clearly established at the beginning of the game? Do you intend to resolve those major plot holes, 999? Do you intend to resolve anything? Because from what I've seen, the true ending only makes things more confusing, opening so many questions while answering so little. No amount of player agency and interactivity can salvage a mess like this!

This is Zero. She's not a Snifit; she's not Psycho Mantis; she's not the final boss of Advance Wars; she's the villain. She's against all digits below and above the number nine. According to her, "They, they all blasphemous." (Hey, a Squidbillies reference makes as much sense as anything else in this game.)

Fortunately, the gameplay is strong en-*snrk* Sorry, but there's just no way I can finish that sentence with a straight face. Though that's not to say that the game parts are bad. It's all simple escape the room mechanics, which I know sounds bad, but it works in the game's favor. All the puzzles are small, contained and usually don't take long, which helps to balance out some of the more esoteric bullshit. Yep, it's even seeping into the gameplay, too. Do you know Morse code and chemical equations? What's that? You don't? Well, too bad. We're not telling you. Instead, we're gonna wait here while you inevitably look this shit up online. I realize that it's supposed to contribute to the feeling that somebody's fucking with me, and I guess it gets its job done, but try telling that to me when I'm solving puzzles that involve base-16 Roman numerals. No, having played it previously (because while you can skip the eff out of text on subsequent playthroughs, you still have to solve all those puzzles all over again) isn't gonna help. But to be fair, a lot of this only comes up near the end of the game, which appropriately lines up with the plot's stupidest moments, too. For the most part, though, the size helps balance out those whacko logic, leaving us with some mildly enjoyable puzzles.

But those are ultimately a minor aspect of the game, so they can do nothing to make up for the poorly written story. How did they mess up such a solid concept? While writing this blog, I categorized several of my observations into a plot hole category, something I remember doing for that abominable piece of ass known as Alone in the Dark. (Don't worry, you guys. This game isn't nearly as bad as Alone in the Dark.) Curious, I decided to compare my two plot hole categories. 999 won, hands down. It wasn't even close. And the worst part about is that I've already thought of several more plot holes popping up in this story. How do you test for something like morphic resonance? How do you know that the receivers aren't just solving these puzzles with their own intelligence? Why was Clover in the Nevada group when her brother was clearly so much smarter that he wouldn't need her psychic message bullshit? Why did the participants have to be in physical danger when the belief that they were in danger probably would have sufficed? Why was nobody arrested at any point in the story? Perhaps most importantly: why, Aksys Games, did you feel the need to complicate the hell out of 999? The premise sounded good enough: adding human elements to an otherwise sterile thought experiment. But then you just had to throw in everything else, and you bit off more than you could chew. Ugh.

Review Synopsis

  • You know, for all the bad things I've said about this game, I have to admit the charac-WAIT A MINUTE! Egyptian priestesses involved in time-travel, wristy math games? This is that Yu-Gi-Oh crossover movie all over again. Seriously, listen to this and see if anything sounds vaguely familiar. I don't even need the other bullets. This will do just fine.

You know what? Enough negativity. It's time to dance. Dance! DANCE LIKE AN APPARENTLY OLD PROGRAMMER WOMAN WHO'S DRESSED LIKE A DANCER FOR NO GOOD REASON!

And here's Cadash! This was supposed to be Galaxy Express 999, but then I realized that it's a Japanese adventure game, and my Japanese is only good enough for pointing out the dumb plot points in 999 (Q? Seriously?). So instead, we get this obscure action game not even I have heard of. That's one part of the job down. The next part is to offer a blanket statement of "it's good" and call it a day.

And first up in making a generic blog for a generic game is starting with the story, even when there's not much to say. A demon captures a princess, and for some reason, people go to war over this. Now some heroes have to save her and....no, that's about it. Not much of a story, but whatever. This small amount of story works well as motivation to get you playing, unless you have something against princesses. And then the game decides to throw in more story for reasons I can't understand. Not in the 999 way from before, mind you, where everything just comes tumbling down, but more in a way that makes you question why it was included in the first place. Why, for instance, are you having me pull some Biblical grave-robbing? To talk to animals? Why? Isn't "wander through the land of the dead" enough for the game? Your scenarios are cool without the story, so all this extra stuff isn't really needed, Cadash. Sometimes, it can result in some really strange and really funny moments, like that Carl Sagan shit above, but for the most part, there's only one real reason any of these short story whatevers made it into the game:

But in all seriousness, let us all pause for a moment of Ninja Disco Pose.

Cadash thinks it's an RPG. As I've already told you, this doesn't work out well for the story, but for everything else, it works well. For instance, multiple characters! True, the game edges you toward the knight by making sure all the equipment in the game is meant for him, but from what I've read, it sounds like each of the other characters plays radically differently. Hell, a couple of them even get to use the MP bar! The mage has thunder, the priest is a defense guy, and I only played as the ninja because he's a fucking ninja. What more do you need? A lot more? Wow. Uh, how about NPCs and towns and stuff? Sure, it doesn't contribute to the story in any meaningful way, but it does offer some direction and rest from the winding level design, along with some means of healing, something you're not going to get in the game proper. It may sound like I'm insulting the level design like I am the story, but I'm fine with it. So what if the levels are more linear than they'd like you to believe? The "multiple" paths simply add more complexity to a game that's so in need of it.

Remember before, where I said Cadash only thinks it's an RPG? In reality, it's....I don't know. What do you call a game where you walk forward and bash dudes over the head? Not a beat-em-up or a character action game or a platformer, but something in between all that. After all, the focus does seem to be on the combat....sort of. OK, so you're not going to get complex combo systems or even multiple attacks (at least from what I can tell), but you do get a ton of enemies to whack about, and that's where the game is at its strongest. The game's always finding new enemies to shove in your face, each one equally fantasy to the last. How do you top a dumb cockatrice? With weird chimera things and that Cthulhu monster in the above screenshot. Plus the bosses are pretty awesome. Ignoring the fact that you're fighting bugs and jelly (it's a bit better than it sounds, you guys), they're usually fast enough to keep you on your toes and give you a good challenge. I say usually because of how disappointing the final boss is. If you have enough herbs, you can just sit in the back and literally wail on his ass.....Look, I know that none of this sounds particularly exciting, but Cadash isn't exactly the most ambitious game in the world. You get some characters, some levels, some fighting, several hours worth of gameplay, maybe even a story, and that's about it. It all works out well in the end, though, so it's pretty hard to complain about what's there.

Review Synopsis

  • Carl Sagan, you disco devil, you.
  • Yea, I only played as the ninja, but the point is that Cadash gives you good reason not to.
  • Oh, and I think something about how the enemies are pretty cool.
24 Comments
26 Comments
Posted by Jeust

Funny as always :)

Posted by Hailinel

*Sees its a blog abou 999.*

*Gets the fuck out before spoilers.*

Edited by CaLe

I have 999 ranked as my 4th favorite game of 2010, yet I can barely even remember playing the damn thing! A boat? A watch? Pink hair? That's all I got. Back in my day we got one ending and we were happy with it!

Posted by Video_Game_King

@cale said:

Back in my day we got one ending and we were happy with it!

What about Chrono Trigger?

Posted by CaLe

@video_game_king said:

@cale said:

Back in my day we got one ending and we were happy with it!

What about Chrono Trigger?

I never played it. My first JRPG was FFVII. I played games since the NES/Master System days, just somehow never got my hands on a JRPG until PS1. Probably because that's when I started buying my own games.

Edited by tread311

The story did go a bit Metal Gear with all of the random things they brought into it. Still liked it though.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@tread311:

I dunno, man. At least with Hideo Kojima, I get the sense that he has a decent sense of control over all that batshit insanity.

Posted by jimmyfenix

oh damn!

Posted by Demoskinos

Shots fired at 999!

Posted by Mento

Good old 999. You and I both probably need to check out Virtue's Last Reward, either for answers or more fuel for the fire.

Both you and Patrick mentioned looking up a walkthrough for some of the puzzles, but I never had to. I'm fairly sure that whenever they introduced something like chemical symbols, they explained them in a way that you didn't need to know the periodic table off by heart to solve the puzzle. Some did need pen and paper to work from (that mannequin body part swap one for instance, though you might've got there by simply experimenting) but none of them seemed unfairly difficult. Having them all self-contained like that meant the game didn't have to rely on ridiculous Roberta Williams leaps of logic all too often. Except when regarding the plot itself, of course.

For the heck of it, let me have a shot at those plot holes, despite the fact I remember very little about the game:

  1. You might've noticed that there are no fruit or vegetables on the ship, or any kind of nutritional fibre. Clearly Zero thought out the poop angle from top to bottom. I was about to say there weren't any real bombs because Zero didn't intend for anyone to actually get hurt, but I guess Japanese Klepek's pile of viscera would disagree.
  2. The Control group (senders? casters?) had the answers provided to them, I believe. They just had to broadcast it to their partners. The reason they had an identical facility to roam around in was in case the signal was easier to pick up if the surroundings were the same? I mean, they didn't know how any of this shit worked.
  3. He can't tell apart faces, dude, and that makes you suspicious? Are you some kind of prosopagnosia racist? It's like I don't even recognize you any more.
  4. Zero had the actual 9 bracelet so she could follow whomever she needed to make the true ending work. The 9 bracelet doesn't gel with the rules of the Nonary Game itself except perhaps as a handy spare (which made the original experiment kind of dumb) but it was necessary for her plans.
  5. Because it's the future, that prosthetic arm can transform into an electric whisk, a buzzsaw or one of those automated card dealing machines. Thus it hums with a nuclear battery that sounds just like a heartbeat. Or the bracelet was on the other arm. I dunno man.
  6. Wasn't the plan to get all the complicit company guys together and get them to collectively admit to their crimes? Except the way she did it meant they could all be easily murdered by Ace because they were tied up, drugged or panicking. Maybe that was her plan instead. I guess there's no reason why FakeSnake had a bomb too, considering he wasn't part of the game.
  7. Egyptian Princess was a deliberate red herring (though I hear the next game follows up on that loose thread). I think you were just supposed to be getting various anecdotes of the psychic morphic field theory at work so it becomes easier to understand when it actually becomes relevant to the story.
  8. Yep. Well. I think she got Santa to do all the heavy lifting.
  9. I seriously don't remember that part too well. He used his bracelet (1), fake Snake (2) and the dead guy's bracelet (9) to open a [3] door, right? Maybe fake Snake actually had a (5). I'm sure the game didn't bring this up, though.
  10. Are you talking about Junpei suddenly knowing everything? Who the killer is, what's going on, why Chidori came back to life? Because that all ties in with the True Ending's morphic field connection with Akane, who has seen all the other endings play out herself. Because she's the player. Or something.
  11. She's real. Not particularly stable, though. I assumed that instead of turning transparent like Marty McFly when the laws of nature threatened to undo her, she just got winded instead.
  12. I love that the last puzzle was a sudoku. Dumb as hell. Like Akane spent all that time contacting the future/present to set all this Nonary Game nonsense up instead of getting Junpei to check out a book about how sudokus work and read it through his eyes. It's not even a difficult sudoku. I suppose the whole thing is also about revenge too.
  13. If she wasn't fully alive before, she is now. She just ducked out at some point with Santa before the ending happened.
  14. (These are for the additional plot holes mentioned in the blog itself.) The Nonary Game?
  15. Because they're so insidious dude. Junpei has to solve all of them himself, and he's only managing it because you/Akane are giving him the answers. This is a universe where everyone reads up on the most esoteric philosophical shit but can't solve a puzzle to save their lives, literally. I mean they all managed that initial puzzle, but that was more of a tutorial.
  16. Because I'm certain the Nevada control group were just given the answers. It wouldn't make sense otherwise.
  17. Because Ace is an asshole.
  18. Because the corporations, man. They control everything.
  19. Because complicated narratives are fun. The whole game's about puzzles: Why can't the main plot be the biggest one of all?
Moderator
Edited by Video_Game_King

@mento:

(If these spoilers become unmarked, so be it. Let it be known that I tried to spoiler them up all nice and pretty-like.)

  1. Did Zero somehow know what exactly everybody had eaten before the incident? Or plan for everybody to have completely empty bladders, colons, and stomachs over a nine-hour period?
  2. I don't remember that being said anywhere in the game. Besides, it doesn't control for them simply solving the puzzles on their own, which presents a major hole for Ace's plan to recognize faces or some shit (that was a really weak motivation they slapped in at the end).
  3. I don't remember what that's referring to. I have an idea of what it could refer to, but I don't think I posted that plot hole in the blog.
  4. Then what bracelet did number 9 guy have? A six, like we're supposed to assume? If that were true, he'd still be alive and utterly baffled at why his bracelet isn't functioning (6+4+1=11=2=/=5).
  5. But he takes it off in the Safe ending, doesn't he? "Yea, I could take it off this whole time. I just didn't because I didn't want to arouse suspicion."
  6. I'm guessing this one's referring to the "got a random guy" thing, right? I left that bit in for the context of "not recognizing a guy by his hair".
  7. More like "a completely irrelevant plot line only written in as needless sequel bait for a game that had no guarantee of ever being made".
  8. What's this one referring to? It's been a while since I've played the game.
  9. This is all horribly insane. Why would Zero complicate her plans so needlessly when it would've been so much simpler to set these bracelets to the values originally assigned them? And I just remembered something: the whole "Akane is Zero" thing relies on two very unlikely claims: "she and Santa are always going through the same door" (coincidence) and "this bracelet is actually six, and there can't be duplicate values in the Nonary Game, so that means Santa's Zero" (Fake Snake means that there have to be duplicate values in the Nonary Game).
  10. I think? A combination of me not having played in a while and you not including my arguments alongside your responses makes it hard to judge. I'll guess I'm referring to Junpei being established as an idiot in the story and then becoming Sherlock Motherfucking Holmes because the plot demands it.
  11. Again, no idea what that's referring to.
  12. And needlessly exposing innocent people to life-endangering circumstances (Lotus' only connection to the original Nonary Game is essentially "I knew some people who were there").
  13. I don't remember it going down like that, though. Santa's through the door (that he somehow opened despite not having the necessary values or number of people), Junpei says "But what about Ak-DID AKANE JUST DISAPPEAR!?" and then we shift to Akane being burned alive.
  14. What?
  15. What?
  16. It doesn't make a lot of sense, anyway, at least not without any visible means to make sure these kids are solving the problems through psycho-resonance whatevers. Snake's older than Clover and clearly much smarter than her, yet he's the one solving the problems? What?
  17. I assume that's in reference to the "no arrests" thing. Isn't that a reason why he should be arrested or something?
  18. Oh. I guess that one's it. On that note, I'm pretty sure you could just tie the crime to these four guys rather than the corporation.
  19. Touche. (Why won't Chrome let me accent?) But I feel like that's just an easy way out to excuse sloppy writing.

Edited by davidwitten22

Ok so there's a ton of writing here (as per usual when its a Video_game_King OP) but I've heard neat things about 999 which leads me to ask this question of you, oh great (narcissistic) king of games...

Should I read your OP or should I watch an LP of this game instead? Is the story good / interesting enough that I should experience it before reading this, or is it such a mindfuck that it doesn't matter?

Edited by Video_Game_King

the story is such a mindfuck that it doesn't matter

Yes.

Edited by davidwitten22

Also @mento I didn't expect your reply to have Persona 3 spoilers in it. Spoiler 10 made me very sad, especially considering I am currently at 12/22 or something in my Persona 3 save file.

DAMN YOU INTERNET. And I read the blog, somehow now I'm more interested in the game.

Edited by Mento

@davidwitten22: Ah, sorry. VGK just reached that point in his Persona 3 photo-blog (phlog?) so I erroneously believed it was fair game. In all fairness, that's the conclusion to a rather incidental sub-plot that is apparently easy to miss, but all the same I apologize.

Anyway, I'm going to reply to these plot holes some more, because I haven't ruined this blog enough already (how the heck did you get away with not spoiler blocking each individual bullet point? This damn editor, I swear):

  1. Yes. All of that. Why not. Nutrition is very important to Zero.
  2. Maybe the puzzles in the original Nonary Game were harder? Except I'm fairly sure they're identical because the ship's rooms were specifically built for some of those puzzles. Which raises the question of how Ace didn't already know all the solutions. Gah, now I'm doing it.
  3. I'm just agreeing with you that Ace being the killer essentially because he can't recognize faces is a kinda dumb excuse. You wouldn't extrapolate that he was the killer based on that.
  4. I don't know why 9 guy's bracelet and June's bracelet can't both be 9s. It's not like the rules of the Nonary Game were actually followed to the letter, they just appeared to be.
  5. He was embarrassed by his prosthetic limb maybe?
  6. Yeah. I guess the hair got exploded too. Or was covered in so much blood to make the original color unrecognizable.
  7. So either a red herring or sequel hook. A good mystery leaves a few questions unanswered. Or is that a bad one? I forget.
  8. I'm going off your list of plot holes in that .png you linked to. This one refers to Akane being Zero, which she is of course, but I think the figure in the gas mask that kidnaps everyone was probably Santa.
  9. The "no recurring values" thing is simply taken at its word by the group. The illusion is what's important, since the verisimilitude to the original trials is necessary to get Junpei to where he can solve that puzzle as well as giving Ace the impression that the rules are still in place so he can be caught out. That it turned out that they were all in Nevada is the game suggesting that nothing is how it originally seemed.
  10. Yes. That's all Akane's doing. Or at least that's how the game explains it.
  11. Your point about whether or not Akane is real, since Junpei bumps into her at the beginning thus proving she's not some shared hallucination. She is real. Sort of.
  12. Yeah, I think the game explained the innocent bystanders being there because they're familiar with the Nonary Game. I forget if the game explained whether or not they were in on Zero's plan. It seemed to suggest Seven was.
  13. They slip out. Again, because the environment isn't actually identical and they have sneaky means to get around. I think it was suggested during that road trip back to civilization. My impression was that neither Santa or Akane wanted to face the group once they'd figured out how they had all been used.
  14. The scientists deliberately devised the Nonary Game as a way to prove these morphic psychic field thingies existed. Clearly it was the most scientific way to go about this.
  15. In response to "why didn't the original receivers figure out any of these puzzles on their own". Because the game blows its own trumpet with how complex its puzzles are that the only way to solve them is by having someone transmit the solutions to you telepathically.
  16. Because she was told the answer. I'm with you here: There's nothing to suggest the Nevada control group would fare any better than the receivers on the ship unless they knew something the second group didn't. Like all the answers.
  17. Nah, this refers to why people had to be placed in actual danger instead of the semblance of danger during the original trials. As for why the same happens in the new Nonary Game - there's no threat of drowning or the "boat" sinking, but I guess Zero didn't count on Ace going around murdering everyone. But he does.
  18. Ace is arrested at the end, but before the second Nonary Game he could use his power as a CEO to keep the truth of the original trials buried. Hence why he couldn't get arrested because of how cleanly the first trial was swept under the rug. The idea instead was to get him to admit to his crimes by throwing (apparent) evidence at him until he snapped and confessed. He just kept killing his accomplices in order to keep it buried instead, though. I have no idea if he was meant to give up before or after you saved younger Akane from the incinerator - I don't think she thought that part through all the way (I still believe Ace was set up to murder his colleagues because Zero ensured that Ace had the upper hand in each encounter and could easily do away with them. Zero doesn't seem like a nice person).
  19. True enough. But how often do you see mystery games where the solution is to rely on psychic powers? Uh, besides Phoenix Wright?

Anyway, the official site actually has answers to a lot of these plot holes (but not all of them). I guess it's an olive branch for those like yourself. There's only so much you can explain away after the fact though; I get the impression the designer knew there were still a few holes.

Moderator
Posted by Video_Game_King

@mento:

2. Yea, wasn't it supposed to be an exact replica of the Nonary Game? And if that's the case, HOW THE FUCK WERE THESE KIDS SUPPOSED TO BE ABLE TO SOLVE A PUZZLE THAT REQUIRES A DEGREE IN SOFTWARE ENGINEERING!? I mean, the computer for the surgery doll room (and was the past solution for that room to cause an electrical fire, too?) is turned off, and everything's identical, isn't it?

4. But what's the basis for believing Akane's got the 9 bracelet? It could be coincidence that they went through the same door three times. Things happen three times in a row without being connected to each other.

6. That seems way too convenient. The bones in the guy's arm are perfectly recognizable, but the hair on his head is completely blown across the room? And wouldn't Ace notice that Snake has a completely different hair color? And hold up a second: he recognized the 9 man fucking immediately, but his other two friends are complete strangers to him? Huh?

7. Probably a bad one. Keep in mind that I've read me some Sherlock Holmes.

9. Wouldn't that make it everything that it seems, though, if they're in the Nevada institute transmitting to the Titanic past whatevers?

10. Wait, so Akane's responsible for Junpei knowing Latin roots of words and being able to piece together that Ace is the killer? Didn't Junpei get these hints from Alternate Safe Timeline Junpei, who presumably got them all himself? That part's not presented as psychic whatevers; that's just him breaking character.

11. Then what the fuck happens to her at the end? She just seems to disappear into nothingness and is never addressed again.

12. They are? Lotus' kids never said a damn thing about the Nonary Game, and I'm guessing Akane never told Junpei about the time she was almost burned to death, so their connections are tangential at best. Their presence (or at least Lotus') transforms Zero into somebody fighting for her own survival or getting revenge for a horrible act to being a needlessly ruthless bastard.

13. Didn't Santa go through the door with Ace and....nobody else, from what I remember? And I doubt that Akane went through a secret door, because wouldn't that make some very audible noise? And wouldn't that be the first thing everybody searches for when they realize they're trapped in the room? The only reason nobody's trying out Seven's route is because it's too damn far up to reach.

14. Science?

15. I'll just say that I don't remember anything about them ever being given the answers. In fact, let me go to the script and sort this out once and for all:

The children from Group Q, on the other hand, were confined to the mock experiment building--Building Q. Building Q duplicated the interior and the puzzles of the Gigantic exactly. Hongou explained the situation to the children in Group Q: "Solve the puzzles you find throughout the rooms. When you solve them, transmit that information to the children in Group A."

So they're not being provided the answers and then sending them to the other kids; they have to solve these puzzles and then send those solutions to their friends or whatever. That massive hole is still present.

18. But there's never any evidence in the story that suggests anybody even considered legal action. Santa watches his sister die, Seven knows this, and then presumably nothing happens for nine years. If "corporation" was a good enough answer to keep legal action off the table, then why did Seven go to the ship in the first place, knowing that the pharmaceutical company is heavily involved in this crime?

Anyway, the official site actually has answers to a lot of these plot holes (but not all of them). I guess it's an olive branch for those like yourself.

This is actually the worst of it for two reasons:

  1. The mark of a good story is not supplementary material meant to explain the numerous flaws in said story.
  2. They didn't include this with the actual game. Like, at all. It was released twice, for some reason, and I got the later version. I'll just leave it at that.
  3. Wait, there's a third reason. Check out #56 for a good laugh.
Posted by Bocam

999 had some things that were lost in translation. VLR had less. Neither game was translated particularly well. Also all games written by Uchikoshi have plot holes. It's just a thing with him.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@bocam said:

Also all games written by Uchikoshi have plot holes. It's just a thing with him.

What plot holes were there in Pepsiman?

Posted by Bocam

@bocam said:

Also all games written by Uchikoshi have plot holes. It's just a thing with him.

What plot holes were there in Pepsiman?

The fact that it exists

Posted by Video_Game_King

@bocam:

I actually like Pepsiman :(.

Posted by Canteu

I couldn't get past the first 10 minutes of 999. It seems to assume you have the reading speed of a 7 year old. The puzzles (at least the first one) are unintuitive, pixel hunty and frankly asinine.

Posted by ManMadeGod

@canteu said:

I couldn't get past the first 10 minutes of 999. It seems to assume you have the reading speed of a 7 year old. The puzzles (at least the first one) are unintuitive, pixel hunty and frankly asinine.

Translation: I got stuck in the first puzzle room and quit

Posted by Video_Game_King

It's a 20+ hour game and you played it for 10 minutes, called it poorly written, "unintuitive, pixel hunty and frankly asinine"....... yet I'm a "cunt". Great.

That's professionalism for you.

Also, holding down the trigger makes the text scroll faster.

And to be fair to him, you can only skip text you've seen before, meaning you have to read it all on your first playthrough.

Posted by Canteu

@manmadegod: Yup, 600 seconds. No more, no less.

I didn't call you anything, simply gave you some advice.

It is slow as fuck, no question.

I didn't lose anything, in fact it seems I have gained 20 hours.