Road to Devadatta – PC Review

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The development team at Open & Close and with help from publishers Comuesp. Here comes the 3-D puzzle adventure called Road to Devadatta which will be released on the Steam Store on April 12 of this year.

This game will test your faith

If you like platforming and uncovering ancient history while looking for a missing family member. Then come check out Road to Devadatta.

An abandoned house located in the dessert, some trees can be seen poking out from the edges and the floor is a mixture of grass and sand.
It all starts with a house.

Gameplay

The player begins the game as Alo, the nephew of a man named Robert. Alo is looking for his missing uncle Robert, who has been missing for several years. Starting his investigation at his uncle’s house, he is knocked out and forced to take a dangerous journey to prove he can join a cult.

A stone wall with a carved into a face. flames below illuminate the face as well as the text above.
Prepare to see this a lot.

The gameplay in Road to Devadatta consists of puzzle segments, platforming and a few chase scenes. Players can only pick up things, jump, sprint, and crouch. There is no combat. When running, players will run out of stamina very quickly, making it incredibly frustrating during chase scenes. The demon that chases Alo is faster, and with the poor stamina system, players have a high chance of dying.

Puzzles and the platforming

The puzzle segments also wildly vary in difficulty. Sometimes puzzles are stupidly simple; one such puzzle has the player simply turn around one out of the two statues, with a note nearby telling you to do so. Yet other puzzles leave the player completely lost, with no clues nearby indicating what to do. The first puzzle at your uncle’s storage shed tells you nothing, and I only figured it out through pure guesswork.

A large boulder rolling through a bright light behind is the word Run in either blood or red paint. a dim glow can be seen in the bottom left corner.
Whelp, that’s a good sign.

The frigid and unprecise jumping controls make platforming sections incredibly tedious. Jumping to a platform falls short, and you will die and restart the whole section again. One segment has the player jumping and dodging flames bursting from walls. While usually, this would be a simple matter of timing, the awkward jumping combined with the poor stamina had me repeatedly dying on what would usually be an easy obstacle.

The problems I faced

Another equally annoying part is using large wooden planks to cross wide gaps between stone platforms to avoid falling into (and dying in) the water below. Again, this would usually be a pretty straightforward task. However, the physics of picking up and moving the planks of wood is terrible, so there is no accurate way to position or adjust them, which often results in you dropping them into the water. The planks of wood don’t respawn, and as they’re in the water, the player has to jump off and die to get the planks of wood back, making yet another seemingly simple section tedious.

stone steps leading up to a ancient door. the player must activate two pillars by changing the symbols.
A very simple puzzle.

Multiple times throughout the game, you can accidentally mess up like this and need to die to respawn items or get your character back on the right path. In addition, there is little to no story in Devadatta, with notes scattered around that pertain to nothing of what’s going on or why. In fact, Uncle Robert barely gets mentioned throughout the game.

Graphics & Audio

Road To Devadatta features no ambience and very little music, which is only present once or twice, and temporarily during chase scenes. The lack of music or background noise makes the game feel hollow and bland, with nothing to really catch your attention. The little voice acting in the game was dry as if the main character is unbothered. Alo only speaks at the beginning, so most of the game is complete silence. Generally, the audio sounds very fuzzy and crackly, and overall not very good quality.

A large Buddha head, below are a few torches and statues
probably the best looking thing in the game.

Graphically there isn’t much to write about in Devadatta, with most environments looking like ruins or cliffs, resulting in a very bland colour palette. They use the same statues throughout the game and don’t leave any mystery for the player to uncover.

Longevity

No secret endings or challenges are available, so Road To Devadatta is a quick one-and-done linear story. It took just under an hour and a half to complete, and if it weren’t for the frustrating puzzle sequences, then the game could have been even shorter.

Final Thoughts

I was happy for my time to end with the game. Puzzles were dull and frustrating. The story and gameplay feel next to non-existent. Lacking any substance or anything to grip the player, it doesn’t feel like anything here would appeal to any particular audience. Chase scenes felt like an attempt to stretch the game out a bit and were pretty much pointless.

I award Road To Devadatta the Thumb Culture Bronze Award.

 

Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.

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3 thoughts on “Road to Devadatta – PC Review

  1. For the record.
    if you look at the matching statues found in the house they have the markings on them if you spin them around except for one which is on the wallpaper behind it.
    Did you try putting the plank half way across the gap so it would allow you to walk out over the water and just jump across the remaining gap? true real world physics wouldn’t let you do that OR perhaps if you believe you are weightless you can do it.
    I think of you were a better player you wouldn’t have been so negative about the game. Perhaps you just weren’t zen enough 🙂
    Also wasn’t sure if I was rating the game or the article The article is no stars the game is maybe a 1.5 but is clearly designed for the current culture of kids who can read ..

    1. Hi thank you for leaving a comment and i hope this helps explain a bit more. for the starting puzzle the character could not enter the house (if that was a bug i don’t know). Plank could not be rotated and the player was weighted and has to keep using the same plank at time so simply using it as a spring board would not have worked.

  2. Oh also the monster chases are actually quite easy if you trap the monster in the right areas. e.g. the first monster go round to the right there will be a square alcove with an exit between two pillars that the demon cannot pass through but you can. get the timing right and the demon will lose sight of you and you can take your time walking over to the wooden planks and pulling them off.
    I will say the fact that you seem to be able to grab the planks and then just place them back on the wall was pretty bad.
    Also most of the puzzles can be solved by simply going through the permutations as none of them are very high.

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