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Wrapping up the Xbox Live Summer of Arcade is the side-scrolling action/RPGDust an Elysian Tail, a sidescrolling action/RPG that combines fast-paced action, witty character dialogue, and brilliant writing. The most amazing fact though, is that the game was developed entirely byone person. Dean Dodrill takes a unique ‘cartoonish’ art-style, creates a genuinely original world, and then injects players into a story that is both engaging and simply fun to play.‘Cartoony’ art-style may cause you to cringe, as games have historically attempted to create more realistic settings rather than cutesy, animated worlds. And in some situations that may be warranted, but as you explore the world and find that the characters are all animals that have beenanthropomorphized, it becomes glaringly obvious that the setting works in tandem with the artstyle. Characters -- rabbits, moles, and others -- give a sort of lovable and cuddly feeling, which draws on the player’s inner ‘aww! cute!’ response. And when playing as a character who, at his very core, is a sword toting badass, it’s difficult to find an emotional attachment beyond, “KILL ALL THE THINGS!” Thankfully, the bright colors and ever-changing scenery give players an opportunity to fall in love with the world, while still killing ‘all the things’.
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