Wednesday, 15 August 2018

King's Quest VI – Upstairs Downstairs

Written by TBD.

Now that I've used both methods to enter the castle, let's see how I fared in each case. The castle's puzzles are also different on the two potential paths, so let's split them up and see where we end up.

Let's start with the Land of the Dead playthrough.


DOWNSTAIRS

When we left off after Alexander entered the castle by his magic painted door, he was perusing his options.


The first door to the right appears to be the dungeon I get thrown in whenever the guards capture me, so nothing special in there.

The second door is a similar dungeon, but this one contains a ghost. The ghost is a small boy crying for his mother. I assume it's Ali and give him the handkerchief his ghost mother gave me in the Land of the Dead. Before he joins her, I ask him if there's anything he can do to help me, as Alexander doesn't work for free.

So, a door behind Superman. Got it – thanks, kid.

Monday, 13 August 2018

Alone in the Dark: Kitchen Nightmares

By Andy Panthro



To my right, a suspicious suit of armour, holding a very sharp sword. Ahead, a pair of locked doors that closed as I arrived on this floor. So I choose to go to my left, towards the unknown. This direction leads me to a corridor and some stairs down. This would be a bit more complex and require a bit of exploration before I’d even know where to go and what to do.

The corridor’s first room was a small bedroom, with little of note except a notebook. This was the diary of Jeremy Hartwood’s final days in this house. A troubled artist, he had delved into the darkness that consumes this house and fell foul of its corrupting touch. In a series of dreams, he found stone pillars in a dark desert, a strange man whose look froze him dead with fear, and a sacrificial knife used for human sacrifice.

Thursday, 9 August 2018

Missed Classic 57: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (1984)

Written by Joe Pranevich



Infocom may have been the masters of text adventures, but they aspired to more. They wanted to be “interactive fiction”, to have the recognition that gaming could be an art form on the same level of a good book. To this end, they pursued authors, most notably up to this point Mike Berlyn (Suspended, Infidel, and Cutthroats) and Jim Lawrence (Seastalker). Even Steve Meretzky, Infocom’s jack-of-all-trades was now a published author. But could they have scored a greater prize in 1984 than Douglas Adams, already admired as one of the all-time greats (and all time weirdest) writers of witty and absurd adventures? Mr. Adams had written and performed with Monty Python. He had produced some of the greatest episodes of Doctor Who to date. He had found seemingly overnight success with his Hitchhiker’s Guide series on radio, albums, television, and books. Now he was coming to work with Infocom to adapt his most famous work to gaming. It would be a tremendous challenge, but if they succeeded it could change the face of Infocom and gaming forever… or at least until someone decided to bet the farm on business productivity software.

This week, we’ll tell his story and start the game that he produced. Can Mr. Adams’s style of humor translate to a good game? Is it even possible to make a good game based on a comedy? I am very eager to find out.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Alone in the Dark - Man in the Mirror

Written by Andy Panthro



This is a game that wants to kill the player character, and it begins from the start, even as you’re just getting used to your surroundings and used to the controls and user interface. I try to get my bearings in the attic, this large open space that is not nearly as full of clutter as you might expect. The game uses what are generally referred to as “tank” controls using the arrow keys on the keyboard. Up to move forwards, down to move backwards and the left and right keys to turn slowly in either direction.

Sunday, 5 August 2018

King's Quest VI – Knight of the Leaving Dead

Written by TBD

When we left off last time, Alexander had just entered the castle using Beauty's serving maid clothes and had gotten himself captured by attempting to enter the most obvious door.

Now, I played on for a little while and became stuck due to a dead-end that required me to reload to before entering the castle. I did reload, and did some extra exploring, and ended up finding the other way to enter the castle that the Oracle, Laukku and Michael had told me existed.

So let’s ignore my fruitless efforts in the castle for now, and deal with me finding a more circuitous route to the castle.


ISLE OF THE CROWN

When I went back to town to swap my paintbrush for a nightingale (not having a nightingale was the dead-end I found in the castle) I saw a guy I hadn’t seen for quite a while.

You may look like a homeless Santa Claus with a paper boat for a hat, but I've missed you, man.

Friday, 3 August 2018

Game 99: Alone in the Dark (1992) - Introduction

Administrator's note:Due to a lack of time to write about Spellcasting 301 at the moment, we're pausing that game temporarily and getting on with the next game on our list. Over to Andy Panthro...

Written by Andy Panthro


How do we assign a genre, when something is breaking boundaries and creating something which at the time was quite unique? On the other hand, so many elements are previously known, is this evolution or revolution? With Alone in the Dark, we see both a game which moves Adventure into 3D (mostly), as well as being the inspiration for an entirely new category of games, although the originator is often forgotten.

Created by Infogrames in 1992 it borrows heavily from horror novels and films to create a creepy and atmospheric adventure, filled with puzzles, traps and monsters. The game uses both 2D backgrounds with 3D characters, and the CD-ROM version also has a magnificent orchestral soundtrack as well as voice-acting which sounded a lot better to me 25 years ago then it does today, but it was good for the time.

Sunday, 29 July 2018

King's Quest VI - Fantastic Breasts and Where to Find Them

Written by TBD

When we left off last time, Alexander had just entered the Minotaur's Labyrinth and fallen down a pit, with the game giving me a clue that the Cliffs of Logic aren't the only place on this island where I'd need to refer to the manual.

I check out the manual's “The Catacombs” section for clues. The manual tells me that “The Ancient Ones built death traps into the catacombs and filled it with dead-end paths, maze-like corridors, and rooms where secret knowledge is needed to pass.” Sounds intriguing.

Reloading to before I enter the catacombs, I quickly go back to the Isle of the Crown to make sure I've got the tinderbox before properly exploring the underground catacombs. While there I try to give some of my other items to the pawnbroker.

But... what if I told you it was a special life-saving brick?

I can't actually remember where I got that brick – I could go through my save games but screw that, let's just say I somehow have a brick in my inventory.

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Missed Classic 56: The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (1981)

Written by Joe Pranevich



In the mid-1980s, Douglas Adams’s career was firing on all cylinders. A comic writer since college, best known for his collaborations with Graham Chapman and Monty Python’s Flying Circus, he was writing for classic Doctor Who at arguably its creative height and had just launched the juggernaut that was The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It was in this spirit that Mr. Adams, in conjunction with Steve Meretzky, created one of the finest and most famous of the Infocom adventures.

This is not that story.

This is the story of the other official Hitchhiker’s Guide game, the one scrubbed from store shelves to make room for the Infocom work. That game was written by Bob Chappell and published by Supersoft in 1981. I’ll be diving into the more famous game next week, but there is something tempting about playing a game that you aren’t supposed to be able to play and I just could not resist. I’ll give a basic introduction to the Hitchhiker’s Guide and Douglas Adams this week, focusing instead on the story of this “lost” adventure game; next week will have a proper introduction as part of the series on the Infocom game. Grab your towel and remember to “Don’t Panic”.

Saturday, 21 July 2018

King's Quest VI – The Cliffs of RTFM

Written by TBD

When we last left Alexander, he had just visited the edge of Chessboard Land, and was hanging out in the garden of pun-named flowers, being hugged to death by the clinging vines.

Reloading after being smothered by the clinging vines, I tried something I didn't try earlier for no reason other than I hadn't thought of it - I gave one of the baby's tears some milk. This just made the other babies cry harder (and louder.) I try to take the bottle back to share it around, but that doesn't work.

The baby has no teeth and no hands, this really shouldn't be that hard, Alexander.

I go back to milk bottle brush so I can give each baby some milk, but Alexander won't take more than one bottle of milk at a time and after returning to the garden with a new bottle, the milk bottle I'd given the baby earlier had disappeared.

After drowning in the swamp trying to get to an anthropomorphic stick, I thought it was time to try a different island.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

TAG Banner Contest

By the TAG Team

Our Hero-U Month has come to its conclusion with the launch of Hero-U and the interview with Corey Cole, and so it is time to decide what to do with our official TAG banner. We could just return to our old Monkey Island banner, but since that would be a dull move, we've decided to hold a TAG Banner Contest!


We tried to hire Mark Ruffalo as the mascot of our Banner Contest, but when he heard he'd get only CAPs as his reward, he became angry and green and almost stomped on us

Sunday, 15 July 2018

King's Quest VI - Isle of Punder

Written by TBD

When we last left Alexander, I had just found a ring I hadn't noticed earlier.

In the comments of that post, I was informed that the ring was mentioned either in the manual or a 'help' section of the game itself.

It wasn't in the manual, but it WAS in the 'About' section of the settings screen.


After clicking on that section, then the “Beginner Walk-Thru” section, and clicking past the spoiler warning, I get to the walkthrough (walk-thru??? spell it properly, game – you're not a burger restaurant) and the second step was the one I missed.

Yes, I may have noticed it – but I didn't.

When it takes me awhile to discover the second step in the beginner walk-thrOuGH - that doesn't bode well for my skills. Oh well.

I clicked through the rest of the walkthrough quickly but may have inadvertently spoiled myself to something else I missed. I wasn't reading it in detail, but thought (or thut, as the game would spell it) I saw something about moving an item on the beach. Hmmm.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Interview with Corey Cole

Introduction by Joe, questions by the TAG community & editors

Lori and Corey Cole have created some of the all-time classic adventure games

As we wrap up our special “month long” coverage of the launch of Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption, we want to close out as we began: with the personalities and stories behind the games. To that end, our community and editors put together a set of interview questions which Corey has been kind enough to answer for us even while he and Lori were putting the finishing touches on their game launch. Well, the day has finally arrived and Hero-U is available for sale! Please have a look at our our review of a pre-release version and check out their game on Steam, GOG, or other places where independent games are sold.

Sunday, 8 July 2018

King's Quest VI: The Cashless Society

Written by TBD.

When we last left Alexander, he'd slept through the opening credits and awakened on a beach in what we assume is the Land of the Green Isles.

Following my usual M.O., I start by clicking on things with my 'eye' icon. I notice that if I look at things that don't have descriptions I get a description of the area itself.

You are on a small beach. The beach is narrow due to the presence of the white cliffs. The river canyon opens here, and sunlight shines in from above. A rainbow crosses over the falls to the west, and a narrow path continues to the southeast.

I go north, and find a tree with a hole in it. There is nothing in the hole and talking to it gets no response. I make a mental note to remember this hole as I expect something will happen with it later.

Looks like I won't be needing any help from my old friends, coffee cup and d6, for this game.

I like that I can see what I'll find if I take one of the potential exits – there's a town to the left and a castle to the right. I decide to try the town first.

Friday, 29 June 2018

Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption Review

Written by Reiko



What comes to mind when you think of the Quest for Glory series? Colorful characters? Moral choices? Puns and silly jokes? Time-driven plot events? Practice-based skills? Puzzles with multiple solutions? If you've been waiting patiently for more of these things, you won't have to wait much longer, because Hero-U: Rogue to Redemption is almost here! Let's take a look at what Corey and Lori Cole have built for Quest for Glory fans.

Editor's Note: Unlike our normal reviews, this one is spoiler-light. There are some light touches on plot elements and activities that happen within the game, but Reiko's review avoids any major plot spoilers. This review is also based on a pre-release version of the game and may differ slightly from the final version at launch.


This might look slightly familiar.

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Game 98: King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow (1992) - Introduction

Written by TBD

Who will win – the giant minotaur with the spiked bracers... or the dude wearing a scarf?

It's time for King's Quest VI. I played through 1990's King's Quest V a little over three years ago (we're a bit slow around here) and my most lasting memories are good graphics but nonsensical puzzles and lots of annoying dead-ends. I'm hoping for a better game this time around.

With King Graham perhaps ensuring Daventry's army is properly armed with custard pies in case the yetis invade, we'll be controlling his son, Prince Alexander, this time around. We last played as Alexander in King's Quest III: To Heir is Human.

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Game 97: Spellcasting 301: Spring Break (1992) - Introduction

Written by Voltgloss



Hello folks, Voltgloss here, ready to start my first mainline Adventure Gamer playthrough after cutting my teeth on a couple of Missed Classics. And what better way to do so than tackle the final chapter in Steve Meretzky’s post-Infocom magnum opus, that I described to my wife as “Harry Potter meets Animal House”: Spellcasting 301 - Spring Break! Having been an avid player of all things Infocom back in the day, but having never experienced the Implementers’ post-Infocom works, I’m excited at this opportunity to continue the journey started by Aperama while he is off for paternity leave.

Comparing this game’s credits to those from the first two games, the one significant change I see is a bevy of additional “artmasters”: a total of 10, way up from the 4 of Spellcasting 201 and the 1 of Spellcasting 101. I expect this is due to the game’s being the first in the series to introduce VGA graphics. According to MobyGames I can also expect “continuous music tracks” and “slight changes to the interface.” Let’s plunge in and see what there is to see!


Just… how are you wearing that? Electrical tape?

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Inspector Gadget - Final Rating

Written by Joe Pranevich



The evil Dr. Claw has escaped and the Earth is saved from an environmental catastrophe for a few years. We have recovered Uncle Gadget’s gadgets, at least most of them, and need to go buy a new TV. Most importantly, we have reached the end of our Inspector Gadget coverage and now it is time to rate the game. I am always uneasy rating a kids’ game, but actually I think this one will do okay. I enjoyed the game much more than I expected. I did get bored for a bit in the middle, but the high-quality of the writing kept me exploring even as I knew how the plot beats would play out.

Let’s see how the game does by the numbers!

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

B.A.T. II - Won!

Written by Tornado

Hello, I’m Tornado, and I'm a relatively new reader of this wonderful blog. Through it, I've been able to relive games I played years ago and learn about those I missed. And so, I’m grateful for this opportunity to write this final post on B.A.T. II (aka, The Koshan Conspiracy).

At the outset of this guest post, let me express my deep thanks to Ilmari for pushing through 99.99% of the game. I played Koshan Conspiracy as a kid and never got very far. Over the years I’ve wondered what I’d missed, and so I’m grateful that he took over 33 hours of gameplay time to flesh it out here at The Adventure Gamer.

My main motive behind this post is to set the record straight regarding the game’s final puzzle, which Ilmari couldn’t quite solve.


This is where we left poor Ilmari.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Inspector Gadget - Won!

Written by Joe Pranevich


We made it! After madcap (get it?) adventures across four continents and rescuing all of the U.N. environmental ambassadors, we finally arrive back in New York. For acclaim and fanfare? For fortune and glory? No! It’s time for our final confrontation with M.A.D. inside the hallowed halls of the U.N. building itself. This is exciting and I am eager to see how (and if) all of the various plot threads come together. Will we be able to avert an environmental catastrophe? Will we have the same plot beats in New York as we have in all of the other episodes? There’s only one way to find out!

Unlike the previous time that I came to New York, it’s light outside and it’s a nice detail that they actually changed the little airplane animation to show blue skies. We don’t have to navigate an airport this time; we arrive directly at the U.N. building, guarded by an Officer O’Malley. Penny expresses disbelief that M.A.D. could ever infiltrate an organization as important as the U.N., but there seems to be something going on inside. When we talk to the officer about it, he can tell us only that Dr. Claw is here and hatching a “twisted plot”, although he doesn’t know specifics. (“I don’t know exactly, but it’s wrong. That’s for sure.”) He says that the police do not plan on doing anything about the situation except to hand it off to the world-famous Inspector Gadget. Uncle Gadget agrees and the police officer lets him in, but Brain and Penny have to remain outside where it is safe. How will we help Gadget if we’re trapped outside?

Friday, 15 June 2018

B.A.T. II - Final Rating

By Ilmari

For game developer, a hybrid appears to a lucrative possibility. Why satisfy yourself with selling a game to adventure game fans, when CRPG fans might also be a potential target of marketing? Yet, making a hybrid is also a risky endeavour, since you might end up alienating both target groups. And indeed, the risk seems quite real, since for every Quest for Glory we have a game like B.A.T. and its successor.


If only I had been playing this game

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Inspector Gadget - Home of the Shiny Green Suit

Written by Joe Pranevich


Here we are at last, Hong Kong! In my west-to-east tour of the world of Inspector Gadget, this is the last stop. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t ready for the game to be over at this point, but it’s actually been a fun ride. I am curious to see how well (and if they bother) to adapt Hong Kong as part of the game. Will it be culturally accurate like our recent trip to Moscow? Or as generic and white-washed as Nairobi? The opening screen both terrifies me and gives me hope: the airport screen is identical to the one in Rio de Janeiro! The “Portuguese” signs are now in Spanish and there are no Gadget-clones running around, but otherwise it is the same. But in all that there is a glimmer of hope: I had a Chinese friend check out the signs and he claims they are all accurate! The yellow sign is for the Hong Kong Airport while the red sign really does say “No Parking” in Chinese! That represents a surprising amount of effort for the designers and I am eager to see if the same level of detail is applied throughout the rest of the adventure.

We talk to Gadget and the conversation has me puzzled. He tells Penny that Hong Kong is the home of the “shiny green suit”. Penny replies that Hong Kong is a free port where you can buy just about anything, but he insists that he wants a “shiny green suit”. What is up with that? Is this a dated cultural reference that I am missing? CAPs for anyone that can figure out what the heck they are talking about.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

B.A.T. II - The Simulator Conspiracy

Written by Ilmari

Last time I had a problem how to continue, since I had no clue where to find any more deeds. Well, it turned out that the solution was to search through the belongings of everyone walking on the streets of Roma. They didn’t have any deeds with them, but one person did own something unique: a local newspaper.


I guess everyone else prefers the digital version

Sunday, 3 June 2018

B.A.T.II - The Great Bank Robbery

By Ilmari

After fully exploring the city of Roma, I had found one quest - get the minority shareholders of echiatone mining in Bedhin 6 sell their deeds to you, so that you can kick the Koshan family out of the echiatone business. That quest failed, because the only person willing to sell his deeds, banker Julius Massiglia, asked an unreasonable price for them. My next quest then was to rob Massiglia bank, presumably to get enough money to pay for those deeds.

My contact, Sylvia Hadford, hadn’t really any plan how to rob the bank, so she just told me to ask people about the bank. That suggestion was plain nonsensical, since everyone I could ask about the bank would just repeat one of the stock phrases. Then I accidentally hit the solution while trying to pursue a completely different avenue of investigation. Remember those three shady persons in a backroom of a bar, selling something called memory tablet?


I am going to be broke after this


Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Inspector Gadget - From Russia with Gadgets

Written by Joe Pranevich


Inspector Gadget isn’t a bad game by any stretch, but as I am inching closer to the end it is becoming… boring. The writing is still good (and occasionally brilliant), but the lack of care that the developers take with their settings and puzzles is making it difficult for me to want to keep playing. There’s been precisely one puzzle this entire game that required you to have Penny and Brain work together. None of the “disguise” puzzles have been more than just picking up the only objects visible in the room. I know I am not the target audience, but I am ready for this game to be done soon. I seem to have a knack for playing “occasionally brilliant but mostly just boring” games these days since I have been playing Icewind Dale and Quest for Glory V in my off time. I expect those are not popular opinions, but I keep having the same problem. If I wanted boring, I’d play The Bard’s Tale III...

As we start this week, Gadget and Penny have arrived in Moscow, only recently freed from the shackles of the Soviet Union. We have a decade until Putin, so what type of trouble can we get into in Yeltsin’s Russia? And I don’t just mean by the Bard’s Tale fans...

Sunday, 27 May 2018

B.A.T. II - All Roads Lead to Roma

By Ilmari

Last time I had got the mission to check out the major deed holders of echiatone industry, but before that I wanted to take a tour of the town. I had just doubled my capital and I was convinced I had plenty to go with. I had 20 000 credits and one trip through the local “subway” would cost 300 credits - I could do plenty of journeys with my money.

Well, I boarded the express-via and it wasn’t really a subway.


I am flying through tunnels alone in this shuttle

After choosing my destination, I got to decide whether to use the express-via automatically or manually. Just for curiosity, I tried to do it manually. I did manage to get somewhere, but I had bumbed too many fellow drivers and had to pay extra 700 credits for it. I reloaded and did the same trip with autopilot. It turned out to mean automatic addition of 700 credits to the cost of one trip.


Isn’t this covered by insurance?

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Inspector Gadget - I Escaped a Crane Down in Africa

Written by Joe Pranevich


The voice of the people have spoken! Although I had considered fast-forwarding through the remainder of the episodes, you have convinced me to savor the events as they come. As such, I expect there to be three most posts before we get to the ending: Moscow, Hong Kong, and (presumably) New York. I could be wrong since I haven’t played this game before, but it’s probably a good guess. Part of me is looking forward to getting back to the Infocom marathon, especially as Hitchhiker’s Guide is next, but I can wait a few more weeks.

By way of warning, most of this post was written while running a fever so if anything seems more off the wall than usual, just blame the Tylenol. There’s also a major “political correctness” issue in this episode which I will want to talk about after the gameplay. I already know the pitfalls of bringing 2018 ideals into a 1992 game, but in this case I think there’s a good debate and I’m honestly curious for your views. I’m not quite as upset about it as the fake-Portuguese, but I’ll let you try to figure out what “it” is before I get to the end. Ready? Let’s save another U.N. ambassador!

Monday, 21 May 2018

B.A.T. II - Fighting the Machine

By Ilmari

Last time I had just finished creating my B.A.T. agent, Andy Panthro, and released him in the planet called Shedishan, where Koshan trust was trying to get a monopoly for the production of echiatone, a valuable mineral. Based on intro, I had the idea that echiatone could be found only on Bedhin 6, a natural satellite of Shedishan, but I’ve since learned it can be found in small asteroids, created by a collision of Bedhin 6 with meteorites, and even on Shedishan itself, in craters created by former chunks of Bedhin 6.

The intro of the game had given me one simple task: find Sylvia Hadford, the other agent of B.A.T. This was pretty simple, since she was staying in a hotel nearby where I started.


What’s that thing hanging from your hair?

Sylvia gave me my next mission. I was to go to the Automatic Information Center in Minerva Tower and find out the most important deed holders for the echiatone industry of the planet.

And that was all the plot development you’ll get this time. Good night everyone!

But wait. How could I play the game for almost 20 hours and not get any further?

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Quest for Glory III: Wages of War - Final Rating

by Alex


Quest for Glory III: Wages of War was not planned. It was an afterthought, a bridge, a diversion based on the idea that Rakeesh and Uhura’s homeland and story was too interesting to just be mentioned in passing in Quest for Glory II: Trial by Fire. It also had the added bonus of easing the Hero, and his narrative, into the decidedly more unfriendly and dangerous confines of Mordavia in the subsequent Quest for Glory IV: Shadows of Darkness. And so we got a glorious accidental gem of an adventure that stands proudly toe-to-toe with the rest of this venerable franchise.

In subjecting Wages of War to the PISSED rating system, I’m going to try really hard to perform a nostalgia-ectomy and judge the game on its own merits--and by the guidelines of the PISSED scale--instead of just going “OMG 10/10 FIVE STARS IF YOU DON’T LIKE THIS U SUCK!”

Pictured: a scene from my nostalgia-ectomy.

It will be difficult, but I can do this. I have you, The Adventure Gamer’s loyal readership to keep me honest here. Let’s do this, hero-style!

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Discussion Point: What kind of game deserves a high score in Puzzles and Solvability?

By The TAG Team

It’s certainly easier to make a bad than a good adventure game, and therefore it is no wonder that we’ve seen a lot more examples of the former than the latter. Indeed, our reviewers feel that they have no problem deciding when a game deserves a low score in some category. On the other hand, since we have less examples of good games, it is more difficult to say when a game deserves 9 or even 10 in some category. Thus, we’ve decided to do a series of six discussion points, each dealing with a simple question: what would a game have to be like to deserve a high score in this particular category?
Puzzles and Solvability

Monday, 14 May 2018

Inspector Gadget - Deja-Vu in London, Too

Written by Joe Pranevich


Welcome back! We’ve been traveling around the world so much we will soon need to hire Rockapella. (What? Is that reference too dated?) In the last two weeks, we’ve rescued one U.N. environmental ambassador from a life making “secret sauce” for a fast-food restaurant in Los Angeles and another from a similar life creating toothpicks down in Rio de Janeiro. Thus far, the game has been fun, if a bit simple and aimed at children. The humor has been well-done and the animation is better than I expected, but all the same the plots are feeling a bit repetitive. This week, I am crossing the Atlantic to rescue another U.N. representative in London.

What do I mean by “repetitive”? Last week, I discovered that this game appears to follow a set pattern for each episode: Penny and Brain are kidnapped, Brain escapes, Penny discovers where she’s been taken, Brain rescues her, they go to a final puzzle at a different location to rescue the U.N. ambassador. I’m going to see if that holds up a third time.

Saturday, 12 May 2018

Game 96: B.A.T. II – The Koshan Conspiracy (1992)

By Ilmari

I am afraid I am in the difficult position of a vocabulary apprentice replacing two very able wordsmiths. Firstly, we usually let a single reviewer do one series so that through cumulative experience they will see whether a game has improved on its predecessors or not. Unfortunately, Aperama was so put off by what can only be described as the inherent Frenchiness of the first B.A.T., so we struck a deal that I would do the sequel, if he would do this nice fun game called Eternam… look how well that went. In any case, Aperama is spending some well-earned time off, so he isn’t even available for this game.


I guess this is far greater adventure than any Computer’s Dream could make up

My only hope was that Chester Bolingbroke, our much appraised colleague working under the alias CRPG Addict, would one day also review this game, like he did its predecessor, thus making up for my frailties. Then I happened to read Mr. Addict’s take on B.A.T. and to my great consternation I found out he wasn’t even considering doing Koshan Conspiracy, because it was categorised as an adventure/strategy -hybrid by Mobygames.


I am truly alone now

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Quest for Glory III: Wages of War - With A Little Help From My Friends - WON!

By Alex


Please note that the above bit of artwork is an unused asset from Quest for Glory III, but it’s such a good picture that’s so representative of the game’s end sequence that I had to put it in.

But let’s back up a bit. When we left off, war had broken out between the Simbani and the Leopardmen, thanks to demonic influence at the peace conference that I helped set up.

Dead bodies . . . dead bodies everywhere.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Inspector Gadget - Send in the Clones

Written by Joe Pranevich


Welcome back! Last week, we successfully helped Inspector Gadget rescue our first UN diplomat, Caroline M’Bega, who was trapped in a life of making secret sauce for an tofu-but-evil fast-food corporation. We also learned an important lesson about… er… polystyrene containers? Smog? Fast food? Something? I’m pretty sure we learned an important lesson, but I can’t remember what it was now. I ended last week saying that my next stop would be New York, proceeding on the map from west to east. When I arrived, I was essentially told that there was nothing going on there (yet) so I picked my next destination instead, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil! For the soundtrack to this post, I recommend that you stick with my childhood memories: “Welcome to Rio” from the 1979 album, “Mickey Mouse Disco”. For no discernable reason, the tracks on this album have stuck with me for nearly four decades despite only hearing it a few times while sleeping over at a friend’s house. You can listen to this enjoyable tune while reading here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3rcmrRtnIQ

Last week, a reader asked if Caroline M’Bega was a reference to… wait. Hold on a second. I just noticed the signs. The first sign is “Aero Puerto” which you are probably thinking is just fine, but no. That is the Spanish word for “airport” and here in Brazil, they speak Portuguese. The correct spelling should be “aeroporto”. Do the developers not know the difference between Spanish and Portuguese? Or is this the real way it is spelled in Brazilian Portuguese? Even worse is the “U No Parko” that is just an offensive parody of the language. I believe in Brazil they used a crossed-out “E” symbol for “proibido estacionar”. Will we have to deal with offensive caricatures of language in every country we visit? Sorry. Maybe no one cares about this stuff, especially in a kids game, but this is practically offensive.