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September 8, 2014

Drawn To Life (Part 2)

Drawn To Life Month
Drawn To Life: Part 1

Hello, and welcome again to this review of the first Drawn to Life game! I explained the basics in the first part, described the plot and went through the first world. I think I can go through worlds 2 and 3 in this part. When I left off in Part 1, the Hero had just saved a female Raposa whose face was normal on a side, covered in darkness on the other. Strange. She doesn't speak... but as soon as she comes in the village through the Snow Fields gate, she seems to take a liking to Jowee. Huh.

By the way, the screenshots I use in this review are taken
from a Let's Play on Youtube made by user MilesValentine.
It's a great way to see more of the game.
Since Frostwind has been defeated, the Creator erases the black clouds blocking the east section of the village, which leads to the Forest Gate. Now, the villagers wish there was a night (and yes, in the game it must have been a pretty long day), so the Hero will have to get the page for the night. Also, the Raposa are planning a celebration, but they need many core elements. The night, first; because parties are better during that time. Duh.

"I'm gonna go in the woods to find a flower. If you want me
not to do that stupid thing, say 'No'."
"Okay, I'm going!"
Except when the Hero reaches the door, it sees Jowee entering the Forest Gate, apparently looking for a gift he can give to Mari. Jowee, you little idiot! The world beyond that gate is dangerous! I mean really dangerous! You want the truth? You can't handle the truth! Here it is, the truth: You'll go really high, and then really low, and get killed by enemies so you'll end up six feet under! The Hero goes back to the Mayor, who says the Creator can make wings for it. Wings to go in a forest? Guess the trees are really big... Oh, and the forest enemies are impervious to the snowballs, so the Hero asks Isaac to make a different weapon – and of course, that means you have to draw a new gun for the hero. This new weapon shoots acorns instead. Oh hey, not a bad idea. Those things do hurt when you get hit by them.

Actually, I think I should warn the village, you look thief-y.
The Hero runs, jumps and flies across the level, following wind currents, until it finds Jowee. The Raposa picked up a flower and asks the Creator to color it for him. Hey, find your own Book of Life for that! Also, on the way, the Hero frees a Raposa who oddly looks like a thief. After the level is over and the two are back to the village, Jowee brags about his adventure, even though he didn't do anything. The Creator draws the night, with stars pretty please. Oh, but the little thief comes out of the woods and starts stealing stuff around the village! Oh no... And obviously the Creator was too caught up in the plot to think about the moon. So the puppet has to go get it.

Oh, please! How can I know you're a good cop of you let
everyone else do the work?
In the next level, not only is there a rocket, but there's even a small horizontal shooting section! Yeah, you navigate the rocket through a maze, destroying little enemies on the way... until the rocket runs out of fuel. Gee, Creator, you could have filled it up! Your avatar didn't even have time to pretend it was Chris Hadfield! On the way to the exit, the avatar also finds Cricket, a policeman Raposa and his two helpers. Great, they will be very useful around the village! Using the Eternal Flame, the Creator removes the clouds around the police station – which, by the way, looks just like another house. Cricket then asks the Hero to get clues and testimonies from Cookie and Farmer Brown, two of the three victims. Hey, you are the cop, do it yourself! I am here to save the world, not to be a policeman! Heck, the avatar might not even be a man! Still, after speaking to the victims, the Hero finds the robber... who is named Zash... Saz... Sassiza... Szsszsazhschsschh... "Zsasha"? ...I'll call him Ash. The robber hands over what he stole and then runs away.

Oh, but... It would be easier to find him in the day, except there is no way to make a transition from night to day, and from day to night, yet! So the Hero has to go back to the Forest Gate and get the hands for the Town Hall's clock. ...Wait. How can the clock have an effect on the world? How can the clock be the reason why night turns into day and day becomes night? ...To which, the game simply replies “Go get 'em or we aren't moving forward in this plot! Go go go!” Okay, okay... Dang...

Groovy, sir mister Mayor man!
The Creator's avatar runs through a difficult, maze-like level in which the forest is oddly combined to gears and mechanical pieces. Also, while searching for the pieces of the page for the clock's hands, the Hero finds a singer, Navyj. Or Navy J.? Whatever. He's basically a Rapo-Elvis. He's even got the banana haircut. And groupies. Great! Now the village really has a singer for the festival! The Creator re-draws the Town's clock (Again: How can it cause day and night to alternate??!?!), and then erases the darkness around the village's stage.

The party is about to start, so the avatar has to go get the villagers who aren't there yet. The Hero goes to get Farmer Brown (who hopes for some country music; tough luck, we've got rockabilly tonight), Isaac, Jowee, Heather, Mari, and finally Officer Cricket, who is still investigating for traces of Zsaza... Zachsa... Sazscgzszsa... Ash around the village. Everyone takes place near the stage. Enjoy the show! Navy J. invites the Creator's avatar on stage and dances with it. Oh, but... but... Mari leaves the place early...

Looks like a fun party. Kinda sad, though, that some
Raposa aren't in the mood for a festival...

The Mayor goes on the stage and delivers a great speech about believing. He praises his daughter, saying that the world wouldn't have been saved without her still believing in the Creator's return. He then announces that he will officially begin her formation as the next Mayor of Raposamora!

She has a point there, Jowee. You know who else was
like that? Wilfre...
But Mari isn't there. She left. The Hero goes to find her. Mari tells the avatar that she needed some time alone. It's a great responsibility for her; she doesn't feel up to the task. She doesn't believe in her abilities, she fears becoming the new Mayor, it's too stressful. Jowee finds the two, and Mari asks him why he went off into the Forest Gate earlier. He gives her something, but not what he had earlier. But Zas- Argh! “Ash” arrives on the scene, apologizes to Jowee for stealing the flower, and gives it back. Jowee can finally give the flower to Mari. Awwww... Why must he be a Raposa in love... This is beyond adorable. The two Raposa and the Hero head back to the stage. The avatar sees Mari delivering sort of a speech (I'm not making a joke here; she didn't have time to think of something. Poor her). And then the party continues.

Don't give up Mari! So long as you don't fall victim to
bribes, don't start pointless projects, and don't get the
villagers top hate you, you're still gonna be a good Mayor!

The Creator re-creates the clock's hands and night turns into day. The time of the day is not relevant to the plot anymore, so the Mayor explains to the avatar that in the Raposa world, day starts at 7 AM and ends at 7 PM. Great way to use the Nintendo DS's internal clock, by the way. The Mayor then tasks the Hero with finding a page for an observatory in the Forest Gate's final level.

"Say something smart!"
"E=MC2. A²*B²=C². E*Presso=Caffeine."
"Wow! Wish I was that smart!"
After that level, the Creator's avatar comes back with Galileo, the “smartest Raposa ever”, if his wife and daughter are to be believed. As soon as he comes back in the village, the Creator erases the darkness around the Observatory and then colors it for the old Galileo. Yay! Oh, but wait, it's not over. Soon the avatar sees Mari trying to solve a quarrel between two villagers, Chef Cookie and Isaac. Guess that's part of her formation... Oof. Not easy to be selected as the next Mayor... Poor Mari. Jowee should make a party for her! ...Unless he's too busy looking for adventure! Oh, but what's that? Wilfre passes by (kind of unfortunate that Mari is standing near shadows right now), insults Mari, and then unleashes another super-strong villain against the village: The fearsome Deadwood!

Deadpool demands that this evil tree changes its name for something that does not start withDead.

What just happened????

Holy cow, this robotic tree is huge! Baobab? Sequoia?
Bonsai? Nah, kidding for that one.
The Hero goes to battle Deadwood, which first looks like a giant tree with mechanical parts... and a face. And of course, it's angry. Smile for the camera, Deadwood! One, two, tree! The first part of this boss is REALLY hard, as the avatar has to destroy four nuts located on the tree. Let that be a lesson, kids: If you're fighting a large enemy and you're not sure about its weakness, aim for the nuts. Sadly, there's god damned dark bats flying around all the freaking time.

Have I mentioned I wasn't particularly fan of flying critters in video games? I hated the ones in Rayman: Hoodlums' Revenge, I hate the ones in this game too. They're particularly annoying here. There is some sort of programming problem that causes the game not to immediately notice when one of those dark bats is stomped, which means your character will be hit instead. (This can be partly explained by the character being made of your own drawings, but that still makes it a pretty damn poor mechanic.) Luckily, that phase isn't impossible to defeat, and the tree opens itself once it's beaten. The Hero enters and sees the tree's consciousness possessed by Wilfre's creations! That phase is a lot easier to defeat, despite many new traps. The spirit is defeated and the captive Raposa is freed. His name? Samuel. He seems to be the village's druid or wise man. I really don't know. It's never made clear. Finally, Deadwood's defeat lets the Creator open the way leading north of the village!

And apparently, Deadwood's spirit is a Shadow monster.
Who'd have thunk?

...Only if it's a parasol that I can turn into a sword and a
beach ball that turns out to be a big bomb I can blow
Wilfre's face up with.
The newly-opened path leads to a sea, and a pretty beach on which you can find the Island Gate! The Hero sees Samuel near it and the wise Raposa gives him the Page from the Book of life for a diving mask and flippers. Turns out there's a lot of underground waters in that world. Even though for some reason, the main character will still get hurt if it touches water in the first world! ...Unless it's because the water in the Snow world is deathly cold... Oh well, that's just the theory fan in me speaking. I like to try making sense of everything, a faculty that seems to be extremely important considering the WEIRD games I've stumbled upon. The avatar also witnesses Jowee and Mari finding a bottle on the beach, which contains a message: It's a page of the Book of Life! What can the Creator make with that page? A Starzooka! It shoots a small starfish whenever you pull the trigger! Oh, and did I mention it homes in on the enemies? How cool is that??

What's less cool is that apparently, the beach is boring as Heck, so the avatar has to go through the Island Gate and pick up the page in the Book of Life for beach games. ...Excuse me, didn't we have more important things to do? Like, stopping Wilfre? Oh, alright, alright, I'll go! But a level wasted on lame creations is a level lost fending off the forces of evil which, may I remind you, WERE ALMOST VICTORIOUS AT THE START OF THE GAME. Still, the Creator's puppet comes back with a page and the weird Crazy Bark, a Raposa who believes himself to be a dog and speaks without pausing in his sentences. I guess he has embraced the madness of the world. Also, the half-dark Heather is happier than before, and seems more open to dialog... even if she still doesn't say a word.

Do you want a cushion so your rock will be more comfortable?
The Mayor welcomes Crazy Bark... but feels kind of uneasy with someone like this staying in the village. The Creator also erases the darkness around a smaller beach, which Mari and Jowee swear to keep as a secret. (Note: by this point, the village has become very large, and going to the Eternal Flame to tap it and then returning to the zone with grey clouds to erase them becomes more and more of a chore as you progress.) Mari shares the secret with her father, who believes the secret beach to be a tad empty, so he tasks the Hero to go through the Island Gate and come back with the page for the Kori trees, a nice bit of vegetation that you will draw yourself.

This is a pretty little beach... But if you ask me to go get
beach toys for it, I give my demission, understood?
The Hero comes back with the page for the Kori Trees and also brings Bubba, Tubba's brother. Oh hey, cool! The Creator: Reuniting siblings since the dawn of time! The Creator erases the darkness around a house for Bubba and his second family, and then the Hero invites Jowee to the secret beach, where Mari is waiting for him. Mari admits to her friend that being the next Mayor is very difficult for her. Mari asks how the creator sees them; Jowee answers “thanks to a Nintendo DS”. Or, rather, he describes a Nintendo DS but never actually names it, and Jowee's idea makes so little sense for them that Mari calls him stupid. To change the subject, Jowee suggests something to ease tensions among the villagers: Creating a statue that will be placed in the village! ...Huh, why not.

"...with buttons and a magic wand! And the Creator would
watch over other universes with it! And then make witty
jokes on pages that aren't material..."
"That's by far the dumbest thing I've ever heard."

A statue made out of the letters STATUE...
Personally, I try to draw a Rapo-Statue of Liberty when
I reach that point of the game.
I don't think I need to say that there's a page in the Book of Life for that, and the Creator's avatar has to go get it. The Hero enters the level and comes back with the page... and an adventurer Raposa named Indee! By the way, if you don't get that reference, you don't know your classics. In the Raposa world, Indee is famous! And Jowee has a total fanboy moment at the chance of meeting his idol! Still, you get to draw a statue. Make it look like the Hero, like you, or like the Statue of Liberty; you're the Creator, the Raposa will accept anything you do, even if you just color the whole block black. And obviously, everyone likes what you've drawn. Sadly, it doesn't appease Isaac or Cookie, who are still quarreling. Later, the avatar finds Jowee and Indee on the beach, looking for a treasure; one that is hidden in the darkness still around the beach. The Creator erases some of it, revealing a dock... and a little further away, at sea... a PIRATE SHIP! ...Wow, whoever made that story just thought “let's put in whatever young boys like. Let's say... Indiana Jones! And... pirates! And... monsters! And more!” That's the most logical explanation. There's also a lighthouse around there, and thus the Mayor asks you to enter the Island Gate a fourth time to get its page so that the Creator can re-draw it.

Ahoy, mateys! I'm right on time for Talk Like A Pirate Day!
The avatar comes back with the page... and pirates! Yep, it saves pirates in that level. Jowee and the Mayor are afraid of them at first, but soon the Mayor makes a deal with them: They get the pirate ship, and they leave the villagers alone. Gee, those pirates are nice... The Creator paints the lighthouse, which means the pirates can now get in their boat... but something large appears in the water. Oh no! It's the Angler King, a giant fish! Way too dangerous for pirates! But apparently the Creator's avatar can defeat it. So the Hero goes to enter the Island Gate a last time.

Yep, and you don't deserve a trial. Life is cruel like that.

I once fished a fish so big the picture alone wighed ten
pounds! When I said it, no one believed me.
Oh, but Wilfre is waiting in front of the door! It tries to lure the Hero to the Dark Side, but the good guy doesn't accept. Obviously. The hero enters and fights the Angler King... first by running away from it. Oh-kay... That part is difficult because the fish is sometimes going faster than the avatar. Finally the Creator's puppet reaches an open space where the battle with the Angler King can finally take place. It's difficult because the angler spawns dark fish frequently and then swims by very fast, which makes it difficult to hit – oh and it's got tons of HP, too. After this victory, the Hero comes back to the Raposa village with... a Rapo-vampire named Count Choco????????

Hello! Zi am right on time for Talk Like A Phony Transylvanian
Vampire Day!
Oh... those don't exist...

I think I need to take a break. I must be mistaken, there can't be a vampire in this game! Unless... no. I... I'll come back later. Tune in this Friday for the final part of this review.