Jan 23, 2010

The Great Adventure Gaming Project

Readers of this blog must have by now guessed that I quite love adventure games. Always had really, even when I was far too young to properly enjoy them -let alone finish them. Thing is adventure games can be quite demanding. Enjoying and finishing them can be very time consuming, and usually requires a certain amount of peace of mind. That's why I have all those (mostly old) adventures I haven't gotten around to actually beating, or even starting, sitting around. When you add some excellent freeware offerings that have already been downloaded and are waiting to be savored, as well as a select few games I played too far ago to actually remember, well, we are talking about -at least- a couple dozen adventures I want to play.

And I'm surrounded by them. So, guess what... I decided to go on and play them. You know, just to make sure I've really studied their breed. Perhaps even to steal a few ideas. Oh, yes and to fully enjoy myself. What's more, I've decided I should blog my thoughts on each and every one I play, and let you know just what I thought of it and whether I bothered finishing it or not. I'll most probably have a lot of adventure gaming experiences to share via Twitter too.

As for the adventures I'll be playing, uhm, here's a pretty comprehensive list of what I have in mind. Might be forgetting a few, but I'm sure I'll remember them eventually.

[Hugely important update] From now on, please do consider this article the hub of the Great Adventure Gaming Project, as it will be where all links to separate game write-ups will appear and where new games will constantly be added to the list. 

Currently Playing:  Scratches: Director's Cut

Monkey Island 3: The Curse of Monkey Island. An excellent adventure with great humour, fantastic cartoon graphics and at least one brilliant song. Unfortunately have only managed to see 70% of the thing. Cursed computer crashes! Thrice damned lost saves!

Loom. Always wanted to try it and have read a thousand reviews and features on this musical masterpiece. I'll finally get to play it in its Steam version.

Planetfall. An Infocom classic. Haven't managed to get very far yet, but this time around I'll persevere. Might even use a couple hints.

Day of the Tentacle. I admit it: I never finished it. Got stuck on the very final part of it ages ago and haven't retried it since. A crying shame really, as DotT is one of the best adventures I've ever played.

The Feeble Files. Don't know much about it, but the screens alone made me grab a copy from GOG.com.

Broken Sword 3: The Sleeping Dragon. Loved the first in the series, thought its sequel was mediocre, and now I'm going to see if the reviews were right for this one. It does look terribly nice though.

Under a Killing Moon. The press loved it and I had a taste 10 or years ago over at a friends place. Seems promising and I always thought its 3D/FMV engine was impressive.

Simon the Sorcerer. Must have started it over a dozen times. Never completed it, despite enjoying the particularly British humour. And the pixel-art.

The Longest Journey. Another excellent -epic too- adventure. Apparently it was a bit too epic for me. I must finish though, as I really want to follow it with a bit of Dreamfall: The Longest Journey.

Zork: The Grand Inquisitor. The latest Zork adventure and it has been sitting on my desk for years. Yes, despite the glowing reviews and the hilarious opening video.

Wonderland. I tried this one as a kid and I pretty miserably failed. Wisely, I've kept the box and am now ready and willing to revisit this incredibly promising and lavishly illustrated text adventure.

I could go on you know, but here are (roughly) the rest in a pretty laconic list. You wouldn't expect me to write a bit on each and every one of them, did you? Oh, come on... I wouldn't have any time left to game.
  1. Lure of the Temptress
  2. Beneath a Steel Sky
  3. Teen Agent
  4. Maniac Mansion
  5. Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
  6. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  7. A ton of Zenobi and Infocom games
  8. Evil Under the Sun
  9. Leisure Suit Larry 7: Love for Sail
  10. Syberia I & II
  11. Amerzone
  12. Necronomicon
  13. Space Quest VI
  14. The King's Quest Collection
  15. Post Mortem
  16. Jack Orlando
  17. Simon the Sorcerer 3D
  18. B.A.T.
  19. 5 Days a Stranger
  20. The Blue Lacuna
  21. Heed
  22. Salambo
  23. Dracula and Dracula 2
  24. Gabriel Knight II
  25. The Hobbit
  26. I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream
  27. A Vampyre Story
  28. Scratches Director's Cut
Related @ Gnome's Lair:


  1. I haven't had the time to sit down and play a fun game in awhile I am going to pick one off your list and try it out :)

    <3 Lisa

  2. Thanks for trusting my gaming taste Lisa. May I suggest you start with Day of the Tentacle?

  3. I love adventure games. Day of the Tentacle is actually my favorite, but when I was little I've spent countless hours dying/restoring in many of Sierra's classics.
    Under A Killing Moon is probably my favorite Tex Murphy adventure. I actually own physical box copies of all 3d Tex Murphy adventures, including 'Overseer' on dvd. But UAKM, although not as challenging in puzzles as the other ones, is my favorite because it's the cheesiest one.
    I've started on completing UAKM and TPD for DOS Nostalgia, but they take so long to beat. Quite unfortunately, because I'd love to review those.

  4. So glad to hear from you again Anatoly! And dos nostalgia is coming back? Why, that's brilliant news indeed.

    Can't say I'm not a bit jealous of your boxed Tex Murphy games, though. Then again the Gog.com version are excellent. Already got the first three games. BTW, I did own a boxed copy of Mean Streets but have lost it over 10 years ago I'm afraid.

    Oh, and as you might have noticed from Twitter I'm currently playing UaKM for my great adventure gaming project.


  5. DOS Nostalgia will be back eventually. It just happened that my life got in the way of the project. A lot of things happened to me through out the second half of 2009, mostly good, but I just didn't have enough time. After starting on the next episode a few times and never finishing a game I kind of gave up for a while. I can't even remember the last time I played a game since summer.

  6. Well, I hope that good things keep on happening to you, and also hope you find the time for some -highly educational- retro gaming and videoing (?).

  7. I completed the first three on your bottom list (bragging).

    Also, Teenagent was a Polish game, something I would like to point out, as there are not that many Polish games that were successful in the world scale (The Witcher and Painkiller being the most known examples).

  8. Well, I was *this* close to completing them myself. No, not really. Only GKII to be frank.

    Oh, and I knew that about Teen Agent. I think you are the one who told me actually. Mind you, it's being given for free over at gog.com.

  9. Man, you haven't played the Indy games? For shame. Also, I Have No Mouth..., is too much trial and error and that tends to diminish its cool premise and writing, so I suggest making liberal use of a walkthrough.

  10. Very well then Ioannis. Pointers much appreciated, mind. Though admittedly I did try both Indy games and haven't been that excited about them so far...

  11. How is this project going? I myself have been on a bit of an adventure game revival over the past couple of years, trying to play all those classic adventures that I never quite got around to. I replayed all the Police Quest and King's Quest games, and tried Grim Fandango for the first time (wasn't all that blown away).

    1. Sadly, it's been more or less put on hold Matt, though I did play (not finish, mind) more than a few of the games listed again. Should this ueber-hectic period be over though, well, I think I'll give it another go. Thanks for reminding me!

      Oh, and do give Grim Fandango another chance. Don't let the interface disappoint you...

    2. I did play Grim Fandango through to the end! The interface is not pleasant at all, but it was more the story and puzzles which just didn't click with me unfortunately. I thought the game started out great, but I found myself more and more disinterested as I played through.

      One pleasant adventure gaming surprise for me was the Gabriel Knight series, I absoutely adored that!

    3. Absolutely loved the Gabriel Knights myself. Especially the Serpent Rouge puzzle in GK3 is easily my all time favourite puzzle; closely followed by the beat poetry one in Grim Fandango, mind. :)

  12. You'll definitely have to play Indy 4, the Fate of Atlantis - the best adventure game of all time, imho. Even beats Monkey Island 2 and Day of the Tentacle, although it's a close thing...

    1. Yes, you are indeed correct. I have to find the time and properly play, finish and re-play it. It's been installed on Steam since forever, but it seems that all these reviews I'm doing are eating into my retro gaming time. Argh!