Friday, April 6, 2012

Sanity Falls Hunt Review (graphic intensive)

"We're all Inn Sane here."

Alexander Blackwell (Alex): “I’m waking up with metallic taste of blood tainting my mouth. I look at my clothes and see blood everywhere, but I don’t feel any pain or see any wounds. It probably isn’t my blood. I try to think but realize that I have no memory of the last 24 hours. The last thing I remember is coming to Sanity Falls with my wife. I feel dizzy, someone must have drugged me. Groggy and confused, I stagger onto my feet and call out for Livea. When silence answers me back, I become aware of my surroundings. I am on the edge of a bridge overlooking the Sanity River. In the puddle of blood beside me lays a phone. It starts ringing..” (taken from MadPea Website)


So today's adventure (okay yesterdays- but by the time me and the two buddies that assisted along the journey and I were done we were all about just able to crawl into bed and pass out) brings us to the most recent MadPea hunt- Sanity Falls. You star as Alexander Blackwell, who's a burnt out yet somehow insanely popular Psychiatrist who decides that it's that the place he has to vacation is none other than this so called beautiful Sanity Falls. Well, let's just say that the Travel agent on duty is likely to get fired, or the good Doctor's finally gone bonkers when you realize where you've woken up. Now I'm not going to go step by step into the whole game but I'll be pointing things out and you'll note there's a crap ton of pictures- that's because I couldn't get over the entire feel of the game though I've got to tip my hat off- if they've never been fans of Indigo Prophecies or Heavy Rain they've paid a silent and ignorant homage to it. 

There were many familiar elements on it to me but it only increased my love. From the get-go I was hooked; a hunt with a storyline? I even gender bent for the occasion- and I have to say, I make a pretty handsome male. For a “Free” avatar (After paying the 100L for the HUD- which, after getting ONE prize a friend has said and I agree with is well worth the Lindin spent)- it's actually one I'll play with over time. Of course before I went to bed I had to tweak my own additions to it- simply changing shape and skin and modding the hair and collar a bit, bamf- I've got Akemo Blackwell, the forlorn Lesbian lover seeking her beloved Liver Wife! (no copyright infringement intended, and I swear to gravy the HUD phone makes her name appear that way). What I love is the whole kind of creepy feel to it; there was a point the sun had sent on this hunt and the background noises had my hairs standing on end. 

A pretty awesome easy to use HUD actually, and a small Ode to my favorite "part" of the game.

The opening sequence you're dropped on your head (just kidding, though I've used a bit of creative license with the photos because I can. Na na na na na.) And you can't remember how you got there, only that you're there. This is definitely one of those hunts you should pay attention to -everything- because there's subtle hints to the endings. Foggy and hazed, you assume much like I do- dude's been drugged. So it's time to put your top cap on Watson, we're on the chase. Get up you drunken lush, and answer your ringing phone. Time to hear creepy man and watch an intense video. Time to stumble down the road, and hope you've decided to go the right way towards the inn. My biggest bum was the lack of actual hints beyond posters; in a game I would hope to find just a few more "interactive" treats though I will admit to a few being hidden in a few.  Though I had to do a bit of stumbling around. Now here comes one of my biggest gripes, though its understand why they did it. I disliked having to teleport OUT of the sim to find the hunt items. In a few stores they were quite difficult to find due to the sheer size and it pulled away from the entire ambiance the game had going. I understand they do this too to help increase traffic of the stores and help as a kind of promotion or to the hunters who simply go to find the items) but for the whole "Storyline" of the game it made it difficult.

You really should see the view from here.

 Though detaching a bit I do once more have to point out the entire amazing set up of the sim. A lot of it was dedicated to the "game" and beyond the amount of traffic generated later in the night it ran pretty smoothly. I understand why they opted to have people use the Avi- wearing only that, the HUD, and an Oracul AO I was running a minute amount of scripts. I was able to run on high Graphics for a good while too. Using their suggested settings with your draw distance up to 200 makes the hunt hard to do but increases the creep factor of the whole setting. The fog, everything was so well done. The trees even- if you've got your sounds up you can hear the crunch of the branches as you're wandering through it. I kept waiting to stumble across something, arm, leg.. though that was saved for much, much later. I enjoyed too the "Creep" left the perfect amount of gore, it wasn't overly emphasized as that's not "Scary" to me, just.. gore. 

Come on Alex, if you think hard enough, the answer will come.

The breadcrumb trail may not lead you back to paradise, but it will lead you to some of the most amazing designers in SecondLife. Though don't get disheartened, if you can't find something you're free to hop into group and ask for some assistance. There was a couple of locations we needed to ask for some guidance on. The Fallen Gods sim was one, but when we found it, we all were facepalming. Most are literally right under your nose, and for the most part the "hints" to where to find your items pretty much give you the answer- especially if your a fan of rhymes and riddles. Though more of the rhyming clue than the riddle, not so much. Though it does lead one to ask- why is a Raven like a Writing desk?

Before we get too much more sidetracked- the entire point of the game is to find two things: The Posters that have your wife's beautiful face and dial the numbers corresponding there. A bit of word to the wise: do it AT the posters, don't write them down they won't work unless you actually dial them in the vicinity of them. Found this out accidentally searching for a hint in the *cough* wrong schoolyard. Still would like to point out, not my fault. the hint was teachers, and it was on the MadPea Sim! (you devious monkeys you.) And these things are scattered EVERYWHERE- I mean, you gotta find 50 but some are in sneaky area's. Casually hidden behind a bathtub; though I did look for awhile within the creepy crib room (unfortunately I didn't take photos of them, so you'll have to see for yourself and find it.) with the bunny who as soon as I find it's creator I'm going to be buying, just because I'm sometimes a mean mother and it will make a great scare tactic the next time my daughters or granddaughters decide to act up.

I don't recall going into port- ohhh I see! I seee the lightt!

Now I'm almost done with my mildly obsessive fan-girl review, so fret not. Now I have to give homage to my favorite level; which starts out as the picture above suggests. Our Hero, orrrrr neurotically deranged psychopathic psychiatrist who's possibly suggested to have done the deed himself at this point (one too many crazy minds, doc?) falls asleep in front of a television. One can only go so long without actual rest, and he begins to dream. I actually took many photos of this level but decided in the end I'm going to taunt you all and tell you that you need to go see it for yourself, because photos do it no justice. The work that must have gone into making this must be staggering, the layers of texture and building to make some of the things seem floating and ethereal in a dream-like state.. kudos, Madpea. You've brought a new level of joy I thought impossible in my second life after finding my family. This was one of TWO, levels that you get after a certain point in the hunt.
 the second is something completely that you'd seen in an awesome game.

The hall of mirrors of a barren wasteland, our Hero is desperate to find any trace of his wife besides the video of her struggles. Time is winding down, and the clues are starting to blur from his sleep deprived mind. He was really loosing it, but he had to battle against odds because what would you do if your most precious thing was taken away? Why you'd traverse worlds to find her and bring her to safety. Though while our trusted Doc totes one nasty looking Ax on his back he had yet to use it for anything. Such as thinking that he was going to gleefully use it on the sadistic bastard that took his wife {Read: Split personalities! Baahaha}. Though you move through and find poster after poster, wallet after wallet and collect your amazing prizes to come to the final conclusion. You race to the bridge in a surreal world and with luck don't miss the big clue and dive off the end like me and my trusty teams of brain-smart hunters did. Though I have to once more point out the cheeky similarities to Indigo Prophecies in that last odd twist of scene. I'll not fully spoil the ending for you, but what I will suggest is that circumstances are not what they seem. Once you've completed the hunt, I shall offer my final and ending point on this amazing hunt.

The truth on how it should have ended.

  "Haha, good one Livea, love. Come here, I've got a present for you."
(We found a use for that ax!)



  1. Thank you for this fantastic review. Just love the way you've written it.. and the picture in the end just cracks me up. Sanity Falls part 2 anyone? :P - Kiana

  2. Your welcomee! Thank you so much for reading it! *grins* I think after four hours hunting me and my group were all a little loopy, and felt the main character's response should have been handled similarly >_> but yusss! part 2!

  3. I just got to the end of this and told Kiana I would have killed Livea on principle. She shared your blog with me, so I could see your alternate ending. I nearly pissed myself laughing. That picture is perfect. LOL

  4. I'm glad you approve! and I'm totally with you. After some hours of hunting I was right there with it, and the image popped into mind immediately I knew if nothing else I had to blog and add that :P