Adventure News
 


May 2005

31

May

Enhanced first 'Apprentice' game now available

Herculean Effort, the team behind the AGS Award-winning Apprentice games, have released a redone version of their first game, Apprentice.

This version features all-new music, voice acting, and French and German text translations, as well as minor graphical and bug fixes. The download (25MB) can be found here.



31

May

New indie game available from developer's site

A new independently-developed game called Final Destination: The Secret of Larson's Folly has recently been released by Cyragon.

Available on CD-ROM only from the developer's website, this Myst-style point & click adventure explores the fate of a planet that was decimated by a natural disaster in the year 2815. The player arrives on the deserted world to investigate the mysterious disappearance of its inhabitants, seeking clues and solving puzzles to discover what became of them in the final days, and determine if any survivors managed to escape the planet's tragedy.

Final Destination boasts some interesting player-friendly features such as multiple difficulty levels and a built-in walkthrough to go along with its sci-fi storyline, original soundtrack, and raytraced graphics.

The game is retailing for $10 (U.S.), plus shipping. For those who like to try before they buy, there are two trailers and a playable demo also available for download from Cyragon's website.



28

May

And Carte Blanche announced

The independent developer Absurdus has released their point & click from 2002, titled Eye of the Kraken, as freeware. The game, which was originally released in 2002 as a commercial adventure, is now available for free on Absurdus' website.

In Eye of the Kraken, players take on the role of Abdullah, a young ottoman on a mission to locate the Eye of the Kraken, an item which apparently holds the power to take over the world. The game is available at the developer's website.

Absurdus also officially announced Carte Blanche, which up until recently was just a rumour. The game is inspired by film noir movies, and will be in full 3D, thus making it possible to bring in cinematic elements such as multiple camera angles and montage effects. Also, the developer promises a few innovations to the gameplay. The game's progress will depend on the player's actions, and there will be character development according to how Edgar, the protagonist, interacts with the world around him.

The trailer can be downloaded at the game's website, and is one of the most bizarre gaming trailers I've ever seen. (Note: trailer contains some "absurd" cartoon nudity.)



25

May

April edition of DIY Games' article surfaces

DIY Games has launched the latest edition of its Independent Adventuring article, this time covering April 2005. With a round up of the month's news, and mini-reviews of both graphic adventures and interactive fiction, Jozef Purdes' writing continues to be essential reading for the Underground fan, and readers are strongly advised to take a look.



23

May

Nucleosys releases visuals from their scary mansion

Nucleosys has released a promotional trailer, showing their upcoming horror adventure Scratches. The trailer ticks in at 20 MB and can be downloaded from Nucleosys' website.

In Scratches, players take on the role of Michael Arthate, a blooming writer who moves to a Victorian mansion bought with the money from the sales of his debut hit. And, in a quite obvious twist, he discovers some terrible secrets surrounding the mansion's dark past.

Although the game's story might seem a bit.. familiar at first, the promotional trailer bears promise of a dark and sinister adventure. Fans of horror adventures should keep their eyes open for this one.

Scratches is nearing its completion, but a release date has not yet been determined.



23

May

Scott Adams' original C64 adventures is given new life

Scott Adams is one of the true legends in text adventuring, and is the author behind what is often referred to as the first commercial adventure, Adventureland from 1978. Now, 27 years later, Retro-Soft.co.uk has announced their distribution deal with Adams, giving them the rights to republish the Commodore 64 versions of SAGA, which apparently means "Scott Adam's Graphical Adventures".

The games will be available from download-trader.com, and will run on a Commodore 64 emulator. The purists out there will probably rejoice in hearing that Retro-Soft is also considering releasing the games on original C64 media. When the games are available for purchase is still unknown, but Retro-Soft will announce more details soon.

Paul Andrews, founder of Alten8 Ltd group, stated that "Scott is a legend and we cannot wait to bring his original games to a whole new generation".



23

May

Former LucasArts designers to provide "creative feedback" on upcoming Egypt-based adventure

Rebel Games today officially announced that Telltale Games has agreed to contribute on the development of Rebel Games' upcoming Ankh, a cartoonish point & click set in Egypt. Telltale will provide creative feedback throughout the development of the game, which is scheduled for release this winter.

Telltale Games is a team of former LucasArts designers, and has earlier been working on projects such as Grim Fandango, Sam & Max and Escape from Monkey Island. They are also the guys behind Bone, which is due for later this year.

Judging from our E3 coverage and the gorgeous screenshots, Ankh could be one of the big surprise hits this year. With the help from the talents over at Telltale, adventure gamers are hopefully in for an Egyptian treat this winter.



16

May

The next Jules Verne based adventure is underway

The Adventure Company has just announced Journey To The Center Of The Moon from developer Kheops Studio. The game will debut at the Electronic Entertainment Expo later this week.

Journey To The Center Of The Moon is loosely based on Jules Verne's novel From The Earth To The Moon. Michel Ardan, a scientist that lands on the moon in a space capsule, must find a way to get back to Earth. On his journey to find that way, he discovers the Selenites, a strange, intelligent, and mysterious race of beings living beneath the moon's surface. As he makes his way, he is faced with questions about the Selenites, their origins, and their nature.

A key feature in Journey To The Center Of The Moon is a merit based system called 'Intelligence Management'. This system tracks the player's actions and puzzle solving progress through the game, and awards the player points, which in turn raises his/her score and earns or loses respect with the Selenites.

No release date has yet been set for Journey To The Center Of The Moon.



16

May

Sequel to Aura: Fate Of The Ages is now official

The Adventure Company has just announced developer Streko-Graphics' The Sacred Rings, the sequel to Aura: Fate Of The Ages.

The story of The Sacred Rings picks up where Aura left off. As instructed by the clan of Keepers, our world saving hero, Umang, continues his quest to deliver some special artifacts and the titular rings to Grifit, the Old Master (most likely for safekeeping). But along the way he discovers that his actions are part of a diabolical plan orchestrated by the evil Durad, the leader of a rival clan. Durad has designs on the rings for his own ends.

The Sacred Rings will feature pre-rendered graphics, a point-&-click interface, over 25 puzzles, and non-linear gameplay with multiple paths that will affect the plot.

Expect The Sacred Rings to be released some time this fall.



15

May

See new screenshots from Phoenix' fan-made adventure

Celebrating King's Quest IX' third anniversary, Phoenix Freeware Online today arranged an online chat, discussing their upcoming fan-made adventure sequel.

The team released 11 new screenshots which, by far, outshines the preliminary screenshots that we've seen before, as well as clips from the game's original soundtrack.

After Sierra and LucasArts abandoning their many adventure series, fan-made sequels and remakes of old titles have been ways to revive the adventure gaming franchises from the past. Unfortunately, many of these projects have been discontinued, due to legal reasons and the huge amount of time it takes to develop a full-scale adventure game. KQ IX, however, is finally nearing its completion, and is scheduled for release this winter.

During the online chat, new info was revealed on the game:

- The game will be consist of nine chapters which will be released in three parts - the first one is due for release this winter.

- The game will be in 3D, thus providing a more cinematic experience with dynamic camera movement and less static screens. However, the game will still be a "screen-to-screen" adventure, and the camera views will be mostly fixed.

- The game will be huge, about three times the size of King's Quest 6.

- The playable characters will be Graham, Alexander and Rosella, but one can take control over sidekicks such as Tigroat, Valanice, Cassima, Edgar, Unique, and Connor in some sections of the game.

- One will be able to visit locations from other King's Quests and even explore some places that you've always wanted to visit but couldn't. One of the new screenshots is, for instance, depicting Graham in Chessboard Land.

This is surely exciting news for fans of King's Quest and adventure games in general. Check out the game's website to see the new screenshots and music.



14

May

Frogwares' upcoming adventure breaks all the rules

The official site for Around The World In 80 Days is now up and running. Among other bits of info Frogwares is dishing out for now are some new screens, and this:

- based on Jules Verne's most read book!

- real time 3D universe;

- high level real time 3D engine, clothes animation, lip-synch, shaders, particles system, sound engine...

- new incredible gameplay combining investigation, exploration, and stealth;

- manage time, money, rest and food during your adventure;

- absolute interactivity: you will speak, run, jump, climb, disguise sleep eat and even bribe;

- 100 characters to meet and interact with;

- funniest dialogs in video game history;

- choose your level of difficulty: from tourist to raider;

- drive vehicles from Elephants to Airship

These features may seem like all too familiar terrain to any RPG gamer, but for the adventure genre it represents a radical departure from the typical 2D point-&-click formula. Be warned, however, about the site. It just might take about 80 Days as well for this Flash based behemoth to load up, even on your broadband connection ;-). 80 Days will debut later this year.



14

May

Get a taste of adventuring in prehistoric times

The Adventure Company has just released a playable demo for Kheops Studio's ECHO: Secrets Of The Lost Cavern. The demo features an intro cutscene that segues into a portion of the beginning of the full game.

ECHO is a point-&-click adventure set in prehistoric times and will have you playing the story of Arok, a young Cro-Magnon man studying the art of cave painting. On his quest to better himself he must learn the world around him and all its mysteries. Along the way he must earn the trust of other men and women and often help them out.

The demo weighs in at 275MB and can be downloaded from 3D Gamers or Gamer's Hell.



13

May

Enjoy dramatic cutscenes from Cyan's final Myst chapter

The Myst V: End Of Ages trailer for E3 can now viewed. The trailer shows a beautifully rendered CGI cutscene from Cyan's upcoming finale to one of the most popular adventure series of all time, set to a lavish musical score.

Download the trailer from 3D Gamers, or stream it from Myst Obsession.



11

May

Information about Zak McKracken fangame's progress

The long-awaited LucasArts fangame project, Zak McKracken: Between Time & Space is expected to be released before the end of this year, and a release date should be announced soon.

A recent interview with three of the project's members, along with some new artwork, can be seen here.



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