I have not, as of yet. finished this game. I have, however, played through enough to be able to make my mind up on my overall impression.
This game was recently gifted to me by a friend with nostalgic ties to a game I'd missed out on owing to being 9 years old and not owning a gaming system that wasn't made by Sega or Nintendo. Therefore, I guess, he figured I might have the benefit of forming an opinion without "nostalgia goggles."
Initial impression on boot up weren't exactly dazzling, but entirely forgiveable when you factor in that this game is 21 years old and was, at the time, something that would have wowed me. The opening cinematics featured cheesy and cliche voice acting and pixelised live actors. The story, however, was intriguing enough to press on in spite of pre-emptively deciding that there was no way this game was going to rattle me. After all, this is an old-school point and click adventure and is in one of my favourite gaming categories.
On gaining control of the game after the introductions, the rendering of the house is pleasantly surprising and detailed, given that your expectations may have been lowered. Controlling your orientation feels a little bit clunky and decidedly less interactive than you were expecting. If, from what I've already said is enough to turn you off of this game, and you absolutely cannot get past the feel of a very dated game, you may as well move on. However, first impressions can (and more often than not) be wrong.
If you like games that aren't going to hold your hand and tell you what to do? Read on.
If you like games that give you a rewarding hit of dopamine when your big brain figures out a taxing problem? Read on.
If you like atmospheric games that play on your emotional state? Read on.
Shortly after I got my bearings, my initial impressions melted off into nothingness. Clicking around, solving that first puzzle...excellent. The star of the show, though, is that musical score. It plays so perfectly as you uncover teasing aspects of the narrative and somehow jangles the ever-loving Hello on your nerves.
This game is entirely a creepy experience when played with headphones and dim lighting (for that immersive experience). My expectations were shattered.
The only time my nostalgia goggles ever came into play and tainted my unbiased experience, is that some of the problems within the game harkened me back to the days of playing Myst.
In summary, I have to admit that the mixed ratings of this game scared me off when I first viewed it. If not for my friend, I would have shamefully dismissed affording this game the chance it deserves.