Bullwinkle Posted October 3, 2010 Report Share Posted October 3, 2010 I've been meaning to comment on this issue for some time, and am finally prompted to do so by another comment about how disappointed someone was when the school year ended with essentially no reference to the exams. On my first playthrough, I felt exactly the same way. I think it was hugely underestimated just how large exams loom both for the character and the player. A game like this has no real victory condition per se, but if you had to offer one up, you'd have to say 'to pass your exams at the end of the year'. The game emphasizes it at every turn. Right up front, the game tells you that if you don't do well on your exams, you'll get kicked out of school. The majority of your time is spent in class. You tend to use those skills disproportionately, in large part because they're generally higher than the others. Outside of class, you probably need to train class skills, and you definitely need to study them; you're even reminded before midterms and finals how important it is to prepare. So you spend all this time, take the exam, and get...a number. The best you can do is look to see how you did compared to the others. As I said, I was pretty disappointed the first time I ended the game. Not with the game itself--I was blown away by that--but how the exam 'storyline' ended. Or rather, didn't end. It's like getting to the end of a novel and finding the author didn't bother to write a final scene wrapping up the main plot. It hurts the game, honestly. I'm aware that your Year 1 exam results will have significant effects in Year 2. I agree that that's what should happen (when you think about it, that's what happens in real life. Your exam results affect what comes next year: which courses you can take, whether you get scholarships, your parents' reactions, etc.). I'm not calling for an immediate in-game effect. Instead, what I think should happen is that each of your exam results should be commented upon immediately afterwards, with a final wrap-up giving a general overview of the results. With six classes, I'd have six different people comment on your results in separate small scenes, each one for a different exam. For example: your best friend, your worst enemy, a member of your clique, your familiar, the head of your college, and an instructor. If you did well, your best friend would be pleased; your enemy, bitter; your familiar, lording it over the others; etc. The opposite, if you did poorly. And something for the in-between. After all six exams are done, wrap it up with a small introspective scene: you're proud, or disappointed, or scared of what your parents will say, whatever. As they are now, exams are a big letdown. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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