TYRONE: Good morning, Kim.
KIM: Morning? Where am I?
TYRONE: You.. uh... fell asleep in the
squad car. And the traffic was like hell,
so I had to take you here.
RENO: Uh... yeah. Hello.
KIM: Who are you?
RENO: Reno. Of the Boys in Blue. And this
ANITA BLUE: Hi.
RENO: Tyrone told me everything. Nothing
like that happened in Austin Powers.
TYRONE: Austin Powers? What the hell? You
didn't say anything about that.
RENO: *cough* It was after the whole Evil
Weasel incident which got Kim kidnapped.
The Taco Doberman in Diner Row was
completely trashed thanks to the battle
between Stealth and Gem Hunter. A single
gordita was contaminated with the saliva
of a Pikachu and consumed by Keno. Keno
was killed and his body became that of
Steve brother, Drew. Drew immediately
tried to create the "Banana of the
Heavens", or the Ultimate Being.
KIM: Ultimate Being? How the hell can he
RENO: Reproducing asexually.
TYRONE: Ugh... I think I'm going to be
KIM: Ha ha. I've had that feeling since
this whole crisis began.
RENO: Er... anyway, Drew failed when Keno
regenerated and his body exploded. I think
Bobbery suffered the same fate as Keno
did, but Bobbery is not like the Izaris.
Once he's dead, he's dead for good. The
perfect host body for Steve.
ANITA BLUE: Once Steve got control of
Bobbery, he ignited everyone and escaped,
but you seemed to have stopped his plans,
for the moment. Then, of course, the event
yesterday at the park... I dunno. The
TYRONE: The city has been evacuated,
thanks to the events at Mentos Park and
RENO: Yeah. ...And I must conduct one more
KIM: Umm... okay.
TYRONE: We need... bigger guns.
FRANCINE: Ack! No! A Godzilla reference!
TYRONE: No. Seriously. We should go back
to the station and get a better gun from
ANITA BLUE: You kidding? Blackwell is a
gun hater. And there's a gun shop next
RENO: What wonders shall never cease.
There is also a pharmacy next to this
KIM: ...Okay. We should try to find out
where Steve is.
FRANCINE: Urgh. Where is the next plane
OUT of here?
RENO: In hell.
FRANCINE: Very funny.
ANITA BLUE: If you don't mind... I'll get
TYRONE: And I will wander about.
• • • • • • • • •
GEM HUNTER: I told you to stop calling me
KIM: Hee hee. How'd you get out the
GEM HUNTER: I killed three doctors, and
proceeded to the doors marked, "Exit".
Then I stole an ambulance and came here.
KIM: Do you have any idea what that slime
GEM HUNTER: I'm no rocket scientist, but
I'd say that that came from the dog that
KIM: I should probably talk to Voice about
GEM HUNTER: I'll follow the slime trail.
Good thing I always have a spare gun...
• • • • • • • • •
KIM: About the doberman... where is it
VOICE: It went upstairs. I haven't seen
VOICE: Go check the kennel, Kim. I think
it killed Keno and Kudo. And... uh... take
this with you.
KIM: What is it?
VOICE: A Sonic Blaster. Since Blackwell
has passed on, he probably wouldn't give
a flying fuck.
KIM: I see.
• • • • • • • • •
Oh boy what a first file. This is a bit of a tough one to get through because it is just pure cutscene. It's kind of amazing how refreshing that one board in the police station where you get to fight some enemies outside of an RPG battle was. I really wish Tseng had done some more moments like this throughout the game to act as "random" encounters.
As it is, you're either staring at flashing text for minutes at a time, or fighting a slow and easy RPG boss fight.
I don't know if it comes through here though, but the truth is I had fun! I don't know if it's the light-hearted reactions to a horrific scenario, or nostalgia, or what, but when I finished the first file, I was ready to jump into the second immediately. There's a lot to complain about with November Eve's extremely repetitive formula, but I can't help but enjoy it still. Some more gameplay, and switching over some of the more static cinematics to just scrolls that can be read at the player's own pace would go a long way to making this game more palatable to a general audience, but I have to admire what Tseng has done so far.
As a child who had Parasite Eve, and wasn't capable of completing the game this let me appreciate the source material's own story in a way that I could finish it, and there's certainly value in the accessibility a ZZT game with cheats and an editor affords. Sometimes though, you have to remind yourself that this is honestly a surprisingly true to the original conversion of a then modern game made by a hugely successful studio to ASCII. Lots of ZZT games are remakes of existing video games, but I think there's something special about November Eve for managing to capture the essence of a complex 3D RPG in this form. It makes compromises like any other "port", but you very much are playing the same game, just with a lot more cheeky humor. In an era where console games were idolized as something ZZT games could only wish they were as good as, Tseng honestly pulls it off far better than I think anybody could have anticipated.
Just, maybe turn up the game speed if you're playing it yourself.
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