• Log In | Sign Up

  • News
  • Reviews
  • Games Database
  • Game Discovery
  • Search
  • New Releases
  • Forums
continue reading below

Adventure Gamers - Forums

Welcome to Adventure Gamers. Please Sign In or Join Now to post.

You are here: HomeForum Home → Gaming → Adventure → Thread

Post Marker Legend:

  • New Topic New posts
  • Old Topic No new posts

Currently online

PlanetXSefir

Support us, by purchasing through these affiliate links

   

Myst IV

Avatar

Total Posts: 70

Joined 2006-05-18

PM

I completed Myst IV today. Now, I’m a hardcore Myst fan - I consider Riven to be the best computer game I’ve ever played.

...and I don’t know if I’ve ever been as disappointed as I am with Myst IV. It certainly has a lot going for it - the graphics are terrific, it has a wonderful commitment to the Myst canon, and a lot of the stylistic and mechanical details are spot on…

...but, the puzzles are an absolute perfect example of puzzles not being integrated with the story and feeling like an artificial gameplay construct. They are arbitrary, completely unfair and lack any cohesion with the Myst world logic. The final puzzle inside Yeesha’s mind, where icons representing bits of dialogue, makes no sense at all! And for goodness sake, clan of Atrus, has anyone heard of a key and lock to keep a door closed???

The sheer amount of time in the game seems completely forced and artificial as well. The performances are laughable - save Yeesha and Atrus (played by a non-actor!).

And, then, during the dream sequence, somehow I found myself in a Peter Gabriel music video. That was the moment the game completely lost me. Right before another meaningless puzzle.

I’m finding that this game got very high scores and is considered the best in the series, after Riven. I absolutely consider it the worst (although, I’ve not played Myst V).

I’ll admit, it’s making me rethink that maybe the puzzles in Riven have many of the same faults and it’s the change in my own expectations, but even with that possibility, Myst IV completely lacked any real charm or mystery (with the notable exception, perhaps, of Spire.) The necklace mechanic. Ugh.

Anyway, I’m terribly disappointed. I’m hoping V, made by the original team, has more of the mystery, charm, and originality.

Anyone want to defend?

     

“The ability to dream is all I have to give. That is my responsibility; that is my burden. And even I grow tired.”
― Harlan Ellison, Stalking the Nightmare

Total Posts: 813

Joined 2004-08-01

PM

I play Myst for the puzzles so I don’t really pay attention to whatever plot there is.
The two puzzles you mentioned were fun but I they were really not typical puzzles, not mechanical and you can pretty easily solve them by feel instead of figuring out exactly how the underlying mechanic works.

The part I thought worst was that spirit guide thing, where you had to carry the appropriate element to the right place. It was a celebration of poor controls, essentially. “Don’t move your mouse too much” isn’t my idea of a good puzzle.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 114

Joined 2007-08-24

PM

I saw many similar sentiments during the Obduction Kickstarter, so You’re definitely not alone. Have mostly fond memories personally, maybe I was intoxicated with “such a beautiful Myst game” or something (I’m pretty fanboy’ish when it comes to the series), but recall really enjoying figuring out the mechanics in Spire, exploring Haven, gradually discovering the course of events. That dream sequence did eventually get pretty annoying, but overall the positives definitely overshadowed the negatives.

It’s probably indeed my second favourite after Riven; I should give it a replay while waiting for Obduction, wonder if “reality” would shatter those memories.

     

Total Posts: 347

Joined 2012-09-20

PM

Antrax - 16 January 2014 11:51 PM

The part I thought worst was that spirit guide thing, where you had to carry the appropriate element to the right place. It was a celebration of poor controls, essentially. “Don’t move your mouse too much” isn’t my idea of a good puzzle.

This kind of puzzle wasn’t new in the Myst series. UrU had the same concept with the fireflies in Eder Kemo Age: you cannot run, jump or get wet, and it was an essencial puzzle to the story.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 1567

Joined 2003-09-10

PM

I haven’t played Myst IV in years—but as I recall, there had been complaints that Myst III was too easy. So perhaps they ramped up the puzzle difficulty in Myst IV and worried less about integrating the puzzles because of those earlier criticisms.

I didn’t think Myst III was too easy, BTW.

My memories of Myst IV are mostly of the environments and the amazing sound effects—I remember the sound layer changing slightly with almost every step. Catherine’s journal brought a tear to my eye. It was also intriguing to see Yeesha as a child, given her importance later on in Uru.

I remember spending literally hours in the Spider Chair, but partly that was because I knew a lot of people were struggling with it, and I wondered if there was a way to make it significantly easier. (There wasn’t, though I did find a way to make it a bit easier.)

I remember enjoying the look on his face when Atrus realizes that his machine has broken down just as he was showing it off—I think it was a viewer of some sort—that was pretty amusing. Some of the other acting was funny even when it wasn’t meant to be.

Overall, though, I loved the game. Maybe it’s time for a replay.

 

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 2648

Joined 2004-01-18

PM

Gonzosports - 16 January 2014 11:35 PM

...but, the puzzles are an absolute perfect example of puzzles not being integrated with the story and feeling like an artificial gameplay construct. They are arbitrary, completely unfair and lack any cohesion with the Myst world logic. The final puzzle inside Yeesha’s mind, where icons representing bits of dialogue, makes no sense at all! And for goodness sake, clan of Atrus, has anyone heard of a key and lock to keep a door closed???

Most of the Myst series and it’s ilk can be said to have this problem. Most of them are less concerned about the story and more about the puzzles. The original Myst was a series of random buildings with little integration.

That being said Myst IV is actually my favourite of the series. I liked the hand interface and I remember getting caught up with it at the time.

     

An adventure game is nothing more than a good story set with engaging puzzles that fit seamlessly in with the story and the characters, and looks and sounds beautiful.
Roberta Williams

Total Posts: 930

Joined 2004-01-06

PM

Myst and Riven were made by Cyan.
Myst III was made by Presto (developer of the Journeyman Project series)
Myst IV was made by Ubisoft (developer of Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell and Assassin’s Creed)
So it’s not too surprising Myst IV was a disappointment.

     

Total Posts: 189

Joined 2010-06-26

PM

Honestly, you guys are insane. Myst IV was SO GOOD, in my opinion! It just looked absolutely fantastic and the worlds were amazing! Granted, the acting isn’t great but who cares. I think the main reason people play the myst games are for the exploration, the worlds and the puzzles and myst 4 ticks all of these boxes and then some. It’s a huge game.

Myst 3 and 4 were my favourites in the series.

Riven looked nice but god knows why so many people think its the best in the series. I was 17 (6 years ago) when I finally got round to playing it and i’m pretty sure I just clicked through the whole thing from start to end… I cannot recall a single puzzle in it. I dunno, maybe the puzzles were that well integrated into the world that I just didn’t notice them. Yse with the next two games you know when a puzzle was a puzzle, and you almost immediately had a vague idea of what it was that you needed to do.

The first game just stumped me and I needed a walkthrough the majority of what I played otherwise I just wouldn’t make any progress. I ended the game when I got to the music airship (anybody remember that ridiculous puzzle?) and never wanted to go back.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 2910

Joined 2012-03-09

PM

The first Myst was kinda good when I first played it, but I wouldn’t reccomend it now, except for historical reasons. The illogical puzzles are the main reason for that.
Riven is BY FAR the best of the series. The puzzles are all logical, hard and within the world’s story/concept. They also follow the logic “explore first, solve later-when there is a reason to”, which is a great plus. They are also really, really smart. It is also IMO the most beautiful of the series and has the best Soundtrack. And it’s story is amazing too, giving a much greater detail between both the D’ni civilization and Atrus background with his father, Gehn. Not to mention that Gehn himself was IMO the best villain in the Myst Series… To sum up, it is pure perfection in my eyes and the No 1 game in my Top 10 games list.
Myst 3 is too easy. Most of the riddles solutions were in J’nanin’s lab. It was aestherically nice however, and Saavedro was really good.
Myst 4’s major problem is that the puzzles and the world were really out of logic. Especially Spire, where Sirrus was able to built entire machines, cables, networks, circuits, etc without having any kind of tools, materials and/or equipment. Also, disliked the whole “dreaming” thing and Yeesha’s acting was plain awful (the same goes for the 2 brothers. Their acting was waaay below in comparison to Gehn and Saavedro). Heaven was excellent however.
Myst 5 is the worst of the series. Graphics, story, almost everything is below expectation. As simple as that.

aaroncarney - 19 January 2014 10:27 PM

Riven looked nice but god knows why so many people think its the best in the series. I was 17 (6 years ago) when I finally got round to playing it and i’m pretty sure I just clicked through the whole thing from start to end… I cannot recall a single puzzle in it. I dunno, maybe the puzzles were that well integrated into the world that I just didn’t notice them. Yse with the next two games you know when a puzzle was a puzzle, and you almost immediately had a vague idea of what it was that you needed to do.

Obviously, you were using a walkthrough from start to finish. There is no way you could have solved puzzles like the animal riddle or the marble puzzle just by “clicking through the whole thing” or “without noticing them”.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 1813

Joined 2005-10-23

PM

There are indeed a few oddities in Must IV but wait until you played Myst V! That one was a really big disappointment to me. Suddenly the whole Myst world as we knew it was turned upside down by the introduction of the Bahro and the slate and it was awful. I will never play that one again.

     

Total Posts: 189

Joined 2010-06-26

PM

Sefir - 20 January 2014 05:53 AM

Obviously, you were using a walkthrough from start to finish. There is no way you could have solved puzzles like the animal riddle or the marble puzzle just by “clicking through the whole thing” or “without noticing them”.

I did admittedly use a walkthrough in a lot of areas but I mostly recall using it to point me in the right direction, literally. I still do not remember any puzzles and i’m pretty sure you can just skip puzzles for example the “map puzzle” maybe? maybe im wrong.

The point that I was trying to make was that I never had any clear idea of what to do next. I understand the whole point of the game is exploration but I never had that feeling of progression when playing Riven, that I had when playing 3 and 4. In Riven it just felt like you was pushing forward into the next area over and over again for no specific reason. Maybe I need to play the game again ... might change my mind.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 70

Joined 2006-05-18

PM

You can’t skip any of the puzzles in Riven. I played a lot of the second half with the Strateguy Guide - the Riven strategy guide is the best guide in the history of guides* - which was great because it would often just point you in the right direction instead of spoil it.

The most reasonable criticism of Riven is that without that guide, getting through the game is simply too difficult. My hat** is off to those who solved it without help.

The final puzzle, especially, is one that I think would be too laborious to reason out without some guidance.

That being said, the plot and its central themes (especially of Gehn going full Col. Kurtz on the people in Riven) of power and responsibility, and the absolute living richness of the world are so rare in the adventure game field.

Myst III and IV definitely feel more on rails, for better or worse, with the puzzle mechanics being the main point of the experience, and less the exploration of a vivid narrative that you are discovering. Someone said that the Myst games aren’t about story, which I heartily disagree with - narrative is what I’m most interested in games (I’m not a puzzle guy) and Riven is my favorite for that reason.


* with the exception of the HHGTTG
** metaphorically.

     

“The ability to dream is all I have to give. That is my responsibility; that is my burden. And even I grow tired.”
― Harlan Ellison, Stalking the Nightmare

Avatar

Total Posts: 1186

Joined 2009-04-28

PM

tsa - 21 January 2014 02:25 AM

There are indeed a few oddities in Must IV but wait until you played Myst V! That one was a really big disappointment to me. Suddenly the whole Myst world as we knew it was turned upside down by the introduction of the Bahro and the slate and it was awful. I will never play that one again.

I agree with this completely.

I’m not a massive Myst fan but I enjoyed playing the first four, the high point of the series probably being Myst III for me. To be honest, I have never finished Myst V, it was so very different from everything that the series was before (and not in a good way) that I just wasn’t interested in what seemed to be a very poor game.

     

3.5 time winner of the “Really Annoying Caption Contest Saboteur” Award!

Avatar

Total Posts: 1813

Joined 2005-10-23

PM

Intense Degree - 22 January 2014 04:41 AM
tsa - 21 January 2014 02:25 AM

There are indeed a few oddities in Must IV but wait until you played Myst V! That one was a really big disappointment to me. Suddenly the whole Myst world as we knew it was turned upside down by the introduction of the Bahro and the slate and it was awful. I will never play that one again.

I agree with this completely.

I’m not a massive Myst fan but I enjoyed playing the first four, the high point of the series probably being Myst III for me. To be honest, I have never finished Myst V, it was so very different from everything that the series was before (and not in a good way) that I just wasn’t interested in what seemed to be a very poor game.

I did finish it. There was one age I solved by clicking on something and with that skipping all the puzzles in it. The ages were OKish but they lacked the beauty and the richness of most of the Ages in the other games. And then there was the ending which I didn’t really understand. Such a disappointment that the Myst series was ended with the worst in the series by far.

     
Avatar

Total Posts: 266

Joined 2005-07-07

PM

Yes. Riven is the best game ever (or maybe second best after Gabriel Knight 3…) and Myst IV is a mediocre game at best. Disappointing in all other areas than the graphics. Half an hour into it it felt like a new Riven, but then everything went downhill pretty fast. Puzzle design, plot, voice acting, writing… Just plain bad. It felt a tiny bit better when I replayed it recently compared with the first time, but only because I rememberd how to approach the most unfair of the many bad puzzles in the game. And yes, I did solve Riven without a WT.

     

Total Posts: 247

Joined 2012-05-21

PM

aaroncarney - 21 January 2014 10:56 PM
Sefir - 20 January 2014 05:53 AM

Obviously, you were using a walkthrough from start to finish. There is no way you could have solved puzzles like the animal riddle or the marble puzzle just by “clicking through the whole thing” or “without noticing them”.

I did admittedly use a walkthrough in a lot of areas but I mostly recall using it to point me in the right direction, literally. I still do not remember any puzzles and i’m pretty sure you can just skip puzzles for example the “map puzzle” maybe? maybe im wrong.

Many of the puzzles in Riven served as ways of giving you information you needed for other puzzles. You COULD skip many of them if you were just getting that information from a walkthrough instead… but then you were kind of robbing yourself of the true joy of the experience, IMHO. The map puzzle was one of those (if we’re thinking of the same thing) that gave you information that you needed later on. If you didn’t solve it, then you must have simply read that information out of a walkthrough if you completed the game.

     

You are here: HomeForum Home → Gaming → Adventure → Thread

Welcome to the Adventure Gamers forums!

Back to the top