The Colour of Murder
Diamonds In The Rough
Professor Layton and the Curious Village
The Lost Crown
Rhiannon: Curse of the Four Branches
Check below for comments and the complete listing.
I was quite surprised to find that I’ve owned 24 Adventure games published in 2008, having reviewed 10 of them. Of course, there were some published in 2007 I was able to experience this year, as well as games in other genres (cf. Fallout 3, de Blob, World in Conflict). No wonder my wife complains about time spent in the Den! The accompanying Avatar is rather an accurate representation, I’m afraid. To be fair, there are three I’ve just started (Sinking Island, Vampyre Story and Nostradamus) with two not yet opened, waiting anxiously on the shelf (Jack Keane and Perry Rhodan).
Of course, all impressions are ultimately subjective. I’m sure a “Best Of” listing would show a lot of variance among Adventure fans. However, I do enjoy the genre and, I suspect, few have played and reviewed as many new games this year as have I. Let me list the titles, in rough order of overall fun and quality (IMHO), with a comment or two. You’ll find links to my 10 reviews, plus I would encourage you to check Metacritic.com for further links and review snippets. As a disclaimer, this listing offers my impressions only and in no way represents the views of the management, etc., etc. Finally, please share your most enjoyable games published this year.
- The Colour of Murder – A great story accompanied by a marvelous, innovative hint system.
- Diamonds In The Rough – “Can you see me? Can you hear me?” Engrossing, moody, shocking ending.
- Professor Layton and the Curious Village – DS – A must-own adventure puzzler.
- The Lost Crown – Atmosphere and ghost hunting, but too long and a lot of backtracking.
- Rhiannon: Curse of the Four Branches – Beautifully written, entertaining; some rough edges.
- Sam & Max: Season Two – As with Season One, a great compilation.
- Overclocked: A History of Violence – A grim and dark game. My kind of entertainment!
- Time Hollow – A fine DS adventure from the creator of Shadow of Destiny. See Toger’s review.
- Murder In the Abbey – A pleasantly surprising medieval mystery.
- Everllight: Of Magic And Power – Gorgeous fairy tale with a dominatrix.
- Nancy Drew: The Phantom of Venice – One of the best in a series I’m increasingly enjoying.
- The Experiment – Experimental gameplay twist with a good story.
- Dracula: Origin – Frogwares scores again with the best of the Dracula games this year.
- Nikopol: Secrets of the Immortals – Stunning graphics and atmosphere with obscure storyline.
- Cleopatra: Riddle of the Tomb – Vibrant graphics along with SecurRom and under 10 hours play.
- Outcry – Intriguing, mysterious, immersive; too much boiler plate (excessive verbiage).
- Dracula 3: The Path of the Dragon – A priest tries to debunk the ancient legend. Matter of taste.
- Belief and Betrayal – A Da Vinci Code wannabe that doesn’t make it. Avoid.
GAMES IN PROCESS (2 to 4 hours in):
A Vampyre Story – After a couple of hours, this beautiful looking game looks like a clear winner.
Sinking Island – CSI meets Benoit Sokal. I like this one much more than I expected to.
Nostradamus: The Last Prophecy – A detective story featuring astrology, good puzzles, fine graphics.
A SPECIAL AWARD goes to Frogwares Studio for re-releasing Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened in a Remastered Edition featuring a new help system and inclusion of a 3rd-person mode as an option.
A SPECIAL BOO-HISS GOES TO the publisher of So Blonde, a game I never opened after finding that it has a virtually irreconcilable conflict with AVG virus protection. Sorry, I’m not going to remove my virus protection just to play a game, no matter how good. No patch appears to be in the works.
ON THE SHELF CALLING TO ME: Two games I won’t open till the “in process” trio are finished: Immortals of Terra: A Perry Rhodan Adventure and Jack Keane.
That’ll do it for me. How about your favs?