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Old 11-27-2005, 06:56 PM   #1
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Default Out of Order REVIEW

Hello, I have never written a review here, but I just had a blast playing Out of Order and wanted to write something about it!


Review of Out of Order

There are many special qualities in Out of Order that make this underground work stand out among even the best commercial adventure games on the market. Every aspect of the game, from the graphics to the plot to the dialogue, contributes to a singular and consistent vision in the mind of creator Tim Furnish. The game’s aesthetics speaks for itself, communicating a strong and inviting reassurance that there are no dead ends and no way to die. Right away, from the opening scene, Out or Order immediately begs the gamer to take his/her time exploring the town and uncovering its secrets.

Out of Order tells the story about a teenager who wakes up in the middle of the night and finds that his entire room has been transported to another world. He attempts to find his way home through investigation and with the help of the many interesting characters he meets along the way. The protagonist, Hurford Schlitzting, is your perfect, lovable loser, the type of guy who eats three-day old pizza that has been sitting out and is dumb enough to sleep with an oversized speaker, secured with only thin rope and masking tape, hanging over his head. As soon as you step into Hurford’s shoes… er… slippers, it is hard not to immediately feel like an invincible idiot.

The level of immersion in this game is phenomenal. The music and artwork sucks you in, the dialogue is witty (and not without its share of geeky references), and Hurford’s hilarious reaction to everything he encounters is such that it immediately influences the way you approach the game’s obstacles. The original soundtrack contributes to the comical atmosphere of the game world, while maintaining a strong sense that there is something sinister at work. The graphics are stunning, with great use of colors, shading, and textures. The town that Furnish has created really comes alive on the screen.

Some of the puzzles are downright and wonderfully absurd, as when Hurford has to prove to an alien doctor that he owns a car or when he has to find out how to obtain the password to get into the control room. In other games, these would be the type of puzzles that might frustrate the player, forcing him to consult a walkthrough and grumble when he finds out the solution. But as Hurford, the answers are driven by his very character, the type of solutions that are perfect for him but simply would not work for anyone else.

The interface is excellent, allowing the player to conveniently right-click through the commands (walk, look at, use, pick up, talk). The inventory can be accessed through an icon in the top left corner or by simply hitting the spacebar. The “save” and “load” screens include a handy preview screen.

There are a few minor things about the game that can be annoying to some gamers. For instance, every time a particular command is used (such as “look at” or “pick up”), it resorts back to the “walk” command. For gamers who enjoy spending some time looking at all of the objects in a new screen, it can get tedious having to right-click back to the “look at” command every single time. Additionally, there seems to be no way of deleting saved games; and going back and overwriting a previous one does not bring the title to the top of the list. This is not a big problem since there are plenty of game-saving slots (I saved often and did not run out of slots as I usually do in other games), but it is still a minor annoyance.

But these are very minor quips in a near-perfect game, and are offered more as constructive criticism for the game creator than as complaints. There are no real flaws with the story or design of the game that I noticed, and everything about the interface runs very smoothly even on my wife's old laptop. I came across no bugs in the script until the VERY end of the game (past the final sequence and credits), where it crashed me back into windows (no big deal since the game was over anyway!).

The ending has a wonderful twist that puts the entire game into a new perspective, although it seemed to end rather abruptly leaving me wanting more. For instance, I would have loved to meet some more of my strangely shaped neighbors on the 162nd floor. However, compared to other underground games, the total game play in Out of Order is actually quite long.

Out of Order was a real joy to play and should be on every adventure enthusiast’s list of games to play (especially considering its free and a rather small download at only 10 megabytes). This is one of those extremely well-crafted games that made me ponder the principles of game design, trying to understand what makes certain games work so well. The entire work is simply loaded with creativity. I have not had so much fun playing an adventure game since Grim Fandango and some of the Space Quest games.
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Old 11-27-2005, 09:48 PM   #2
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link to game?
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Old 11-27-2005, 10:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amitavc
link to game?
http://www.adventuregamers.com/under...nfo.php?id=223

The website link is on that page.

Edit: This game is definitely worth playing (just to add my two cents)!

Last edited by Melanie68; 11-28-2005 at 07:25 AM.
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Old 11-28-2005, 05:52 AM   #4
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Nice review 80k. I had a great time playing OOO too; especially the last half of the game or so. Clever puzzles, great plot, and laugh-out-loud funny to boot.

And I agree that it should be on every Adventure enthusiast's list - a top rate freeware gem.

Last edited by simpson_yellow; 11-28-2005 at 06:05 AM.
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