Latest User Reviews

Review of Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror


Rating by subbi posted on May 29, 2012


A somewhat dissapointing sequel to one of the most classical and epic adventuregames.
The graphics are slightly improved compared to the 1st game and the character shifting is a nice addition to the gameplay.

The story however is much weaker, the characters uninspiring and the puzzles often uninvolving or simply unrelated to the main story.
Time Played: Under 1 hour

Review of Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror


Rating by emric posted on May 29, 2012


i actually liked it slightly more than Broken Sword 1 (yes you read that right ;)


I enjoyed this more than Broken Sword 1—and I realise I'll probably be in the minority on that point, cos every other review I've read about this game prefers the original.

It feels exactly the same. the same gaming engine, same quality and style of graphics & cutscenes, same voice acting, same style of story and same tone to the writing. Just a new adventure for George and Nico.

I can't quite remember if you ever get to play as Nico in BS1, but in BS2 you play her half the time and George the other half. And I thought this was a big improvement to the whole undertaking. I found that it kept the pace moving along nicely.

The adventure was structured a little differently. This time it was a bit more linear. So instead of having so many places to go and explore at once, more often it was like having a small scene that you complete and then move onto the next one. I preferred this pacing.

What this game did extremely well was getting puzzle difficulty just right! I had to try a few things at times and exercise my brain, but it was never so hard that i got frustrated and had to consult a walk-thru. also the puzzles themselves were logical enough and never too bizarre or obscure, which is a trap i feel many adventure games fall into.

Although BS2 used the same past-tense grammatical style and had the same voice-actors as BS1 (both of which i found extremely annoying in BS1) for some reason they didn't bother me this time around. Maybe I just got used to it or maybe my experience of this game was coloured by the fact that the game i played just before it (Dead Reefs) was so horrible, that I greatly enjoyed returning to a familiar environment and interface.

The inventory system works well and i like the little animated method employed when your mouse drops down to reveal the inventory bar. music was fine without being a standout. the story was made of commonly used adventure constructs—not very original, but still a light-hearted and fun experience.
Time Played: 10-20 hours

Review of Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars


Rating by emric posted on May 29, 2012


for me, more mediocre than brilliant, but still a solid example of the genre


This well-loved title is very very much in the vein of an Indiana Jones adventure. I sometimes considered it a blatant stylistic rip-off, but was eventually content to consider it as quite well conceived in it's own right. it is also very well structured and paced and the puzzles are well designed.

The artwork is rather good. For me, the comic style characters clashed a bit with the rest of the backgrounds, so i would've preferred a more complimentary graphic style for the character designs. but i admit they were able to achieve greater animated expressions this way—especially in the cutscenes.

I did however have quite a big problem with the main character, George. The voice acting for him was awful! completely overacted! About halfway through the game I couldn't take it anymore and I turned all the voices off. After that I enjoyed the game much more! Although some locations had no music and so it got a bit quiet.

The writing certainly suited a retro adventure gaming experience without voice acting. I wouldn't be surprised if they were added later for a subsequent release (but i could be wrong).

Also the character design for George was kinda weak. He looked completely dorky in his light blue jeans and stupid light green jacket. Maybe this was considered trendy back in 1996 when the game was released...I can't remember.

I was also frequently annoyed by the tense of the writing. For example if you click on a door George would say "The door was locked" instead of "The door is locked" as if he was looking back on the whole experience, and it kinda takes you out of the moment.

In adventure gaming, I prefer not being able to die. Broken Sword had a few instances where you could die and I felt they were completely unnecessary. It certainly didn't heighten the sense of danger—it was just frustrating.

So I wouldn't call this game a personal favourite, but i won't deny that it's a solid classic adventure experience and I'll go on to play the next one sometime soon. Hopefully they got a better voice director (or actor).
Time Played: 10-20 hours

Review of Bone: The Great Cow Race


Rating by emric posted on May 29, 2012


this sequel is a marginal improvement. but still not a great adaptation of the bone world.


a little more ambitious and marginally more rewarding than the first bone game. at least they learned from some of the voice issues and did some re-casting. but it's still nowhere near as fun as telltale's more recent adventure games. i so wish they'd cut their teeth on something else and left this cult-favourite material until they were more experienced at making adventure games. it's probably a good thing they didn't end up making any more of bone games after this one. my advice is definitely go read the Bone graphic novels—they're amoungst the best modern fantasy i've come across—but feel free to pass on this game and it's predecessor.
Time Played: 2-5 hours

Review of Bone: Out from Boneville


Rating by emric posted on May 29, 2012


avoid this game and instead read the AMAZING graphic novels it's based on


the Bone graphic novels by Jeff Smith (this game is based on the first one) are seriously amoungst my all-time-favourite books. So it's kinda disappointing that this game doesn't do them justice. the voice casting is the worst culprit. also the environments seem to kinda 'shrink' the bone world. it's also very very short—only takes about 3 hours to play. the addition of some lite-arcade sequences (although skipable) wasn't a good idea. it would've been much better if telltale had tackled this amazing bone material now rather than in 2005, cos these days they seem to be making much higher quality games.
Time Played: 2-5 hours

Review of Tex Murphy: Under a Killing Moon


Rating by Lucien21 posted on May 28, 2012


Anyone for Twistee


The great Tex Murphy’s third adventure. After Mean Streets and Martian Memorandum, Tex jumped into the CD age with his first FMV adventure.

Tex is a down on his luck PI in the Raymond Chandler mold, dressed in an overcoat and fedora clad, his love of the ladies and drinking is only matched by his goofiness and ineptitude.

Somehow he always solves the case though.

In a post nuclear war San Francisco, Tex can be found in Chandler street. A mutant friendly neighbourhood filled with interesting characters, from the beautiful Chelsee to the old grumpy Pawnshop owner Rook.

You start the game broke and looking for work, an old friend posps by for a friendly warning and the local pawnshop is robbed. So what starts as a simple break in spirals out into multiple locations and a world threatening plot.

The game is presented in two main style with all the conversation and cut scenes etc filmed in Full motion video while all of the movement and locations are in 3D. This allows you to move the mouse around in movement mode and search the 3D locations for clues and interact with object. Once you hit the space bar to enter interaction mode you can look, pick up or generally fiddle with the environment. (I think at one point I may have been labled as a freak who likes to take down pictures from the walls). In this mode you can also examine and combine inventory items to solve the various devious puzzles that are thrown your way.

Clues etc can be found to interrogate the characters who inhabit the world so each new clue means going around them and watching the cut scenes as you ask them the new tidbit of information to gleam more clues to get you to new locations with more puzzles etc etc. All this until you finally reach the endgame and save the world.

The acting for the most part is hammy and overblown, but Chris Jones breaths so much wit and charm in the main character that the acting and humour all make perfect sense while you are playing it. Watch as Murphy stumbles into situations, prat falls and walks into pillars. It’s hilarious stuff.

Although the game is pretty straightforward there are a couple of issues with the puzzles. There are a couple of times where walking through the wrong door is instant death so save the game often. The movement can be a bit floaty and difficult to manouver in a hurry so avoiding the droid guard in GRS is annoying as hell and finally it is perfectly possible to make it to the end of the game and miss one or more vital inventory item which makes it impossible to finish the game without reloading an earlier save and then sitting through the whole shell game sequence again.

Tex Murphy is a delight to watch and a lot of fun to play.
Time Played: 5-10 hours

Review of The Walking Dead: Episode One - A New Day


Rating by Lucien21 posted on May 27, 2012


Too short and too easy


I'm a big fan of the comic book series, it's one of the best ongoing comics in recent years and it is known for it's shock value and nobody is safe atmosphere. Kirkman is not shy about maiming of killing off main characters.

So when Telltale announced they were doing this game I was slightly skeptical. Up until that point all there games had been cartoony, type affairs. Could they pull off something edgier?

While there are plenty of Zombies in the world of the Walking Dead. The comic has always been about more about the humans and less about the Zombies. They are the threat and the background in which the human drama is unfolding, but the chatacters and their actions are always the main meat of the story.

So it was great to see that the game focuses more on the small group of survivors and is mostly a dialogue based affair with some puzzles and a few action sequences. It's not Left for Dead.

You play as a convicted criminal who escapes in a great intro sequence as the world goes to hell in a Zombiepocalypse. You quickly run into Clementine ,a young girl, and become her protector. After helping out a couple of guys you end up in a familiar location for a little while before being dumped in a pharmacy where most of the action in this episode takes place.

Talk to all the characters to gain background and a sense of who they are and they will remember what actions you have taken, who you supported at crucial times, whether you confronted them or lied to them etc etc. This makes the game replayable to see if you missed anything and whether the choice you didn't take was the better option.

Unfortunatly branching storylines like this mean that the action lenght of this episode seems SUPER short. I managed about 2.5 hours in the first playthrough. On smaller episodic type games it probably means that a 4 hour linear game is turned into a shorter experience with replayability.

Graphically the game still looks dated, but the cell shaded characters do give it a comic book feel that enhances the atmosphere of the game. The game world is pretty, but sparce of actual interactivity. There is a limited area in which to walk around keeping exploration to a bare minimum, but heightens the feeling of being trapped.

In keeping with most Telltale games of late there is little in the way of actual adventuring. Puzzles are few and far between and the couple that do exist are extremely easy to the point of insulting. It does have some actiony sequences, but thankfully they are constrained to a few situations and avoid the Jurassic Park nonsense.

As an interactive experience set in this world, it hits all the right notes. The world feels authentic, the characters interesting, the art stlye adds to the comic feel and you spend most of the time talking to other characters.

As an actual game...it's too short and waaaaaay too easy.
Time Played: 2-5 hours

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