John Walker's Electronic House

21 Comments for this entry

  • bob_arctor

    I’m playing Blade Runner for the first time, having bought it from a local ‘boot sale. It’s ace, with all pointless gadgets and that, like the blowup image thing which works on magic. Seriously though it is good and interesting and shows up Discworld Noir for the mediocre detective game it is.
    Is that the sort of thing you mean by reinvent?

  • John W

    You might want to check the date on Bladerunner. Interestingly, it’s another game that can’t deliver on all the promises it makes, but you’ll get to that.

    Comparing BR to Discworld Noir is a strange combination. They’re about as far removed from each other as you can get while still in “point and click”.

  • Richard

    Yeah, little things like the ENTIRE PLOT BREAKING will do that.

  • John W

    Shhhh, I wasn’t spoiling it for him.

  • pharoahe_monch

    well, that finally explains to me, why even the shittiest of mouseclick-adventures get so high scores now and then.

  • pharoahe_monch

    i mean, your review

  • Richard Hamer

    It is scary, that the adventure game genre must be the only one to have an entire fan base suffering from mass delusion.

    I mean… for example, like *everything*. They even give Kings Quest VI a good score, and thats outright deception.

  • John W

    It really is about junkies getting their fix. There’s no critical faculties allowed in, and worse, these people have allowed themselves to believe that these games really are as great as those from the 90s. It’s strange – merely playing an old game reminds you how this isn’t true.

    Sometimes, in the face of such passion, I worry that I might be wrong – maybe I’ve gone off these games or something. Then every now and then a great one comes along, and I recognise its greatness, and celebrate it.

    The lengths to which people go to escape the reality are peculiar. The “But at least it’s an adventure game,” is most common, and least logical. But one of the commenters on the review complains about the score, and then goes on to state how he reads scores. He says that 5 and below aren’t worth bothering with. So he’s marking from 5 to 10 then. In which case, sure, it’s a 7. Or indeed, a 5. Like I said. Weirdos.

  • Jonh

    I loved Blade Runner

    Reminds me I still havn’t got it back.

    The thirteen different endings I am sceptical about. I saw three but that might just be down to me subconsciously making the same choices. It was more black and white in kotr (as to what choice was right). Which I think is a point in BRs favour.

    It had its irritations but I played it about 8 times which is more than anything else I can say apart from Red Alert.

  • Richard

    Not really. Blade Runner tossed the Dice O’ Random most of the time, with the bits you had control over being fairly obtrusive (for instance, I seem to remember that shooting a policeman during the sewer chases automatically made you a replicant)

    For Christ’s sake, you could die by sitting in a comfy chair, because the chair randomly had DEADLY SCORPIONS IN IT!


    How the HELL can people praise this game and still sleep at night? Yeah, it was vaguely pretty, but…

  • John W

    The but being, whenever a character got close to the screen, and then the pretty went bye bye.

  • Jonh

    Oh yes the policemen bit was a bit annoying although it WAS possible to shoot him and get away. But,as you say, that made you a replicant lover. Scorpions? I never came across those. I need to get it back. I obviously missed bits.

    It is an old game I now want to look at it again.

    That sort of re-inforces the feeling I have that I always make the same choice.

    I really dont remember the scorpions.

    So fun, and fantastic for the time.


  • Wilko

    I want to play Fate of Atlantis again, if only to see if it really was as good as I always claim. That, and I never got around to completing it, as my then-PC died while I was on the final puzzle.

  • Richard Hamer

    Fate of Atlantis is the sort of ‘old-skool’ (sorry) adventure game that is so shamelessly long, unforgiving and over-complex, it would never, *ever* be made these days.

    The game expected you to know how to use a bloody archeologists surveyors instrument, for gods sake!

    Still great, though.

  • John W

    You mean a theodolite?

    They must have appeared in at least 70% of adventure games.

  • pharoahe_monch

    hey john. a quick question. is that true that they will give you mostly crappy adventure games to review, because they enjoy your biting skills? adventures may be crappy nowadays, but there are other genres which produce perfectly fine games every year. why don’t you get to review something worthy? Broken Sword 3s of this world are rare (which you over-rated :))

  • John W

    They give me the adventure reviews, I think, because I have a good knowledge of the genre, and am hence aware of where a game is achieving or failing in the context of where others have failed or achieved. Tim Stone gets lots of the RTS games because he’s expert in them. I suppose it’s a similar logic. That they like the way I write them is why they give me work at all, rather than why they might give me a particular type of game.

    Of course, I do review other genres, often in PC Format and other magazines here and there.

  • pharoahe_monch

    i was thinking, too, that you can’t be specialist in only adventures. but you still don’t get almost anything else to review. except if the game’s really rubbish.
    what other genres do you review in other publications? and name some game in particular. i have no access to most of the UK’s gaming press, so at least i’d like to know, what you’re up to.

  • John W

    Well, I do tend to get the crap that’s left over. However, I occasionally get platformy stuff, obscura, and currently a PS2 ninja stealth game that I’m trying to imagine a way to be more rubbish.

    Examples – I just reviewed ER: The Game for Gamer: extraordinary Sims meets Theme Hospital insanity. And Restricted Area for EG: terrible post-apoc RPG-lite. Obviously Psychonauts was a delight to review, and with Format there was Lego Star Wars, a complete surprise-joy.

    I’m hardly Mr AAA.

  • pharoahe_monch

    well, let’s hope they like your axing of crappy games too much to give you anything good. i’ve been in that situation, too.