Ever since they opened for business, Neopets.com has been a popular phenomenon. With Neopets, visitors can create a Tamagotchi-like creature to take care of on the website. Because of its immense popularity, the next step of turning the concept into a videogame was obvious; enter Neopets: The Darkest Faerie. The greatest danger in videogames based off a popular franchise outside videogaming is running the risk of not paying much attention to the actual gameplay and too much attention on the details that will represent the franchise properly. Is this the fact with Neopets: The Darkest Faerie? Letâ€™s find out.
In Neopets: The Darkest Faerie, players take on the roles of Tormund and Roberta. For those familiar with the Neopets universe, Tormund (or Tor for short) is a lupe, and Roberta is an acara. The game starts out with a basic tutorial where players must learn the essentials of playing the game with Tor. Tor is a young farmer who wants to be a knight and one day gets asked by his parents to deliver something to the castle. Later on, players will take control of Roberta, who is the niece of the king. Eventually, Tor and Roberta will team up to make the best of Torâ€™s swordsmanship and Robertaâ€™s sorcery skills.
The basic gameplay in Neopets: The Darkest Faerie is to get from point A to B safely, fetch something and then deliver it to point C. This type of gameplay bores easily and combined with the poor control and combat systems, Neopets: The Darkest Faerie can get frustrating at times. Younger players can find the fetching and backtracking gameplay somewhat interesting, but even for them thereâ€™s a point when enough is enough. Grabbing random items and delivering them to random people to advance the story will not keep players interested in Neopets: The Darkest Faerie.
The combat system in Neopets: The Darkest Faerie is poor to say the least. The amount of different moves that our heroes can execute is saddening, and aiming at certain enemies can be a difficult task. The poor camera doesnâ€™t help either, making players want to avoid combat rather than to engage in it. The actions seem scripted and enemies donâ€™t appear to be having much A.I. The overall difficulty of Neopets: The Darkest Faerie is low, even on the harder difficulty settings. One noteworthy element in the game is the inclusion of motes, which can be used to upgrade armor and weapons for a certain period. The upgrades can be used to defeat certain enemies or solve certain puzzles. This makes Neopets: The Darkest Faerie somewhat more interesting, but barely extends its lifetime.
Neopia, the world where Neopets: The Darkest Faerie is set in, isnâ€™t an overly detailed world, but itâ€™s a big one. There is enough variation in the world to keep younger gamers interested with its vibrant colors and overall cutesy feel. The framerate keeps steady for most of the game, but tends to have a dip or two during in-game cutscenes. The music and sound effects are of average quality, although the sound effects lose some points due to the excruciatingly annoying ringing sound that occurs when magic is low.
Neopets: The Darkest Faerie is too average of an adventure game to be interesting. The uninteresting story and gameplay are disappointing, especially since the game is based off such a popular franchise as Neopets. Younger gamers might get enjoyment out of the game, and fans of Neopets will certainly appreciate the variation in Neopets that are rendered in 3D. If you can, skip this game, especially since there are many adventure games that are so much better than Neopets: The Darkest Faerie.