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Best Adventure Game No One's Ever Heard Of

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and theres also this awesome freeware game:

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Oh this. Absolutely. The whole Trilby series is just outright fantastic horror adventure. More people need to play this series.

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Wow, there are so many games I love and games that look really interesting in this thread! Thankfully a long Easter weekend is coming soon to play some of them.

If you speak German, I would highly recommend to check out the work of The Art Department, a company that produced several promotional games during the 90s. Not all of them hold up to the high standards of commercial games, but a few are really good.

My favorite must be "Bifi 2 - Action in Hollywood" which has great writing and humor! Don't bother with Bifi 1 though.

KArpH.png

Also interesting are "Dunkle Schatten" 1 & 2 (3, not so much) and "Das Telekommando kehrt zurück" (it's a sequel to the much inferior Telekommando 1).

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Of all the games listed in this thread,

Colonels Bequest, I have it, I actually acquired it in a trade with someone which were all disks which we thought were shareware. The game was still mega spooky to play. I recently re-played it using SCUMM, and DOSBOX. It has two endings, though only one gets you a perfect score. It also incorporates several "goofy deaths" like space quest. Other Sierra games that I've played but are rarely heard about are the Ecoquest games.

The Dare to Dream games mentioned earlier on in the thread I played, but you'll probably never get them to work on anything now since they were windows 3.0 era games.

The Tex Murphy games (Martion Memorandum and Under a Killing Moon) are ones I either played or owned at some point. I have "The Pandora Detective" but was never able to make (the DVD version) work on a current machine, so I wound up watching it as a let's play on youtube.

I've played a few things made with the "Adventure Game Studio" (including some sierra game remakes) but games made with it tend to be extremely slow and unplayable, even on new machines because the games are often designed for 320x200, but have to software-scale up on a modern machine. But many are free ( http://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/games.php )

I've played a few Japanese VN type games. (In Japan, what they call adventure games, are also called visual novels here.) There are earlier games that used text parsers, but just about everything since VGA uses the mouse and plot-branching choices (instead of inventory and direct puzzle solving.) My favorite recent one is Steins;Gate, and it has several endings too. I also like the Princess Maker series, but that's more of a RPG than a pure Adventure game, though the second game has more in common with QFG (central town, surrounded by an area full of monsters, skill building, event day/night cycles, and several fixed characters you (optionally) have to find) and has dozens of endings.

I'm sure there are plenty of Adventure games that were made in non-English speaking countries we've never heard about. I've seen at least two mentioned in the thread.

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And also Sorcerers Get All the Girls. Although in hindsight that game probably warped my young, innocent mind.

spellcasting-101-sorcerers-get-all-the-girls_5.png

Harry Potter was a total ripoff of this game. :P

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Lume by State of Play deserves some attention.

Here are some great pictures of the work on the full version.

Instead of 3D simulation, they are handcrafting all the scenery in wood and paper! (Double Fine - idea for you?)

They have already released a short but nice teaser version of the game, with great design and nice puzzles. The puzzles are not easy according to reviewers, but I think Monkey Island and Grim Fandango are harder.

You can find this playable teaser here: http://www.stateofplaygames.com/work/lume/

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Picture from the Lume teaser as you can play it now:

20120310140030-lumescreenshots6.jpg

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No one mentioned The X-Files Game? Came on like 8 discs or something, lol. But for a crazy X-Files fan like me it was amazing. Even if it got pretty bad scores in magazines etc.

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I assume "underrated" means that it didn't gain a high popularity or sales despite positive views of critics/gamers.

I will have to invoke Douglas Adams. A word from his dictionary "The Meaning of Liff"

ABERYSTWYTH (n.)

A nostalgic yearning which is in itself more pleasant than the thing being yearned for.

Most of the old games you people have dug up in this thread might not be the little gem you remember it to be.

Some of the games may even be total turds.

I begin with

-Legend Of Kyrandia 1,2,3

I had fond memories of these old Westwood games. So much so that I wanted to replay them last year, which I did using Dosbox. Finished them all.

Worked well.. except that I should've kept them as memories instead of picking them up again. They were total turds.

Illogical puzzles, inventory garbage, maze navigations, abrupt fatalities from stupid stuff (so learned to save often).. some more inventory garbage, pixel hunting also.

-Innocent until caught 2 ("Guilty")

I picked up this little turd as I bought my Sony 4x CDROM + crap soundcard bundle in 1995. I didn't even have fond memories from when I played it back then.

Illogical puzzles (I remember a coathanger), many of the worst pixel hunts ever seen, non convincing voice acting. Ok graphics.

-Normality

I still have the original game package for this game. Someone in this thread called it "an interesting real-time first-person adventure" - let's just say we can agree on the word "interesting." The idea behind the game was great, but execution was dreadful. Puzzles were notoriously irrational.

It's a turd, but still is an "interesting" turd. Maybe I can get it for a fair price to someone buying weird old games like that? It's one of my best maintained game boxes and cd.

A lot of the games mentioned in this thread can be best classified as "aberystwyths", and best left in the fuzzy part of our brain responsible for nostalgic yearnings and warm fuzzy feelings of childhood joy.

On the affirmative side though, I'd like to reiterate two serious contenders for "underrated" category:

Toonstruck - incredibly well conceived and well written puzzles, dialogue, humor, acting and animations. Its humor was multifaceted toward both adults and children, so that a child could play it without being able to understand the naughty jokes, while still enjoying the childish humor. Adults got full access. That's how well written it was. I would also say it had near perfect length. Both the dialogue and the puzzles were highly based on puns and words in the english language. I doubt it would come across well if it was translated to other languages, due to the main quest.

Unfortunately, a very high production value made it expensive, and very poor sales figures precluded a sequel to get made even though the ending of the game strongly hints to a sequel.

The only negative thing I have to say about Toonstruck is that the moron Ben Stein was in it. Though he played an aptly droll role.

Torin's Passage - I consider this a gem. I usually don't like Al Lowe's games (especially not Larry), but this is the exception. The graphics are not great, yet animations are convincing and funny enough. Great humor, dialogue, puzzles. I replayed this one recently, so it's not just an aberystwyth to me. Still a pity about the graphics and audio though.

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Also interesting German games: Andromedas Erbe 1 and 2 and Mission Supernova 1 and 2. Andromedas Erbe 2 was one of my first adventure games besides Goblins 3 and Dott.

Mission Supernova 1:

Mission Supernova 2: (sceenshots from picture 9)

http://www.secondmoon.de/horst/msnshot.html

And there´s a little joke about Larry 1. :cheese:

Andromedas Erbe 1:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7-7eZp_nWA

Andromedas Erbe 2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QtnEwswb1wU

Great ingame music!

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Looked through the thread and then my shelf, hopefully these are not listed before. Pictures from mobygames. I liked all of these but preferred Morpheus and Secrets of the Luxor. Both pretty Myst-like. Deadalus Encounter and TLC are both FMV. Daedalus is cheesy in parts, but I was into it back then. Tia was hot.

I believe Master of Dimensions and Secrets of the Luxor are quite rare but I had the fortune of finding them for $10-$15 new some 15 years ago. Jewels of the Oracle is pretty much a pure puzzler, but entertaining nonetheless.

Tender Loving Care is my absolute favourite but not really a normal adventure but more of a psychological thriller with analysis of yourself between chapters (through questions), which then shapes the story. Very cool imho. Found it at a gas station 10+ years ago, lol.

The great Tender Loving Care:

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Daedalus encounter:

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Morpheus:

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Secrets of the Luxor:

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Jewels of the Oracle:

jewels-of-the-oracle-macintosh-screenshot-entering-a-puzzle.png

jewels-of-the-oracle-windows-screenshot-beads-puzzles.jpg

Master of Dimensions:

152016-master-of-dimensions-windows-screenshot-found-the-dimension.png

master-of-dimensions-windows-screenshot-the-space-dimensions.png

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Going way back to the C64/Amiga days, I was fond of Neuromancer:

72199-neuromancer-amiga-screenshot-sell-your-body-parts-at-the-body.png

(screenshot from the Amiga version, which is probably the best one)

The game consists of two basic areas: The real world, and cyberspace. The real world bits are more like a traditional PnC adventure, while cyberspace has an RPG/combat element of breaking through security (though even that pretty much boils down to whether or not you've grabbed the right versions of the hacking "software").

But the cleverest thing it did was that when you broke into a new computer system, there would typically be discussion boards or news posts to read, some of which advanced the plot, others just for amusement. This struck me as clever because it showed the designer(s) understood the difference between rewarding the character for success and rewarding the player. Where (for games at the time), for example, a typical RPG game would reward the character with gold/experience/etc. for success in battle, this game rewarded the player with information, the only real reward you can actually give to the player of your videogame.

There are some issues: As the game goes on, the focus shifts so completely into cyberspace and away from the real world that you can pretty much spend the entire second half of the the game "physically" in your hotel room. Plus, the ending completely discards the moral ambiguity of the novel in favor of "kill the evil AI".

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Toonstruck - incredibly well conceived and well written puzzles, dialogue, humor, acting and animations. Its humor was multifaceted toward both adults and children, so that a child could play it without being able to understand the naughty jokes, while still enjoying the childish humor. Adults got full access. That's how well written it was. I would also say it had near perfect length. Both the dialogue and the puzzles were highly based on puns and words in the english language. I doubt it would come across well if it was translated to other languages, due to the main quest.

Unfortunately, a very high production value made it expensive, and very poor sales figures precluded a sequel to get made even though the ending of the game strongly hints to a sequel.

The only negative thing I have to say about Toonstruck is that the moron Ben Stein was in it. Though he played an aptly droll role.

Toonstruck would be one of my favourite non Lucas arts adventure aswell as Noctropolis... Remember playing both as a kid, moreso Toonstruck as Noctropolis went straight over my head.

Most of the sequel did get made. The game got split into 2 because the game was becoming to long.

The game is stuck in legal crap at the moment as Keith Arem (owns the rights to toonstruck 1 and 2) was meant to make an announcement at the 2011 Comic Con but couldnt because of legal issues.

There is a facebook page up for the revival of toonstruck 2 aswell.

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Toonstruck would be one of my favourite non Lucas arts adventure aswell as Noctropolis... Remember playing both as a kid, moreso Toonstruck as Noctropolis went straight over my head.

Most of the sequel did get made. The game got split into 2 because the game was becoming to long.

The game is stuck in legal crap at the moment as Keith Arem (owns the rights to toonstruck 1 and 2) was meant to make an announcement at the 2011 Comic Con but couldnt because of legal issues.

There is a facebook page up for the revival of toonstruck 2 aswell.

Gah. Sometimes I get annoyed at people being anally retentive about Intellectual Properties that they've discarded to the wastebin of oblivion.

They should get their legal crap sorted out, get a Kickstarter project going plus some smart marketing..

I really want Toonstruck 2. Without Ben Stein preferrably.

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521023-the-lost-files-of-sherlock-holmes-the-case-of-the-rose-tattoo.png

Great game. Horrible title. The Lost Files of Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Rose Tattoo. Ugh. It should just have been The Rose Tattoo. Would you pick a book up if the title was The Mysterious Affair of the Black Bird, or would The Maltese Falcon be more likely to attract your attention? Of course, it was the sequel of sorts to The Lost Files of Sherlock Holmes, but anyone who puts the words 'the case of' in the title of a detective story simply isn't trying.

There are loads of Sherlock Holmes games, but this one is probably the first really good one. It involved a sprawling, massive investigation, and the production team really did their historical and Holmesian research (something they didn't bother with on the previous game). The voice acting is sometimes crap, and the FMV sprites sometimes have so few frames that the characters seem to be experiencing seizures of some sort. But the story is good, especially if you really know the original stories, and more than compensates for the technical shortcomings.

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If anyone has brought up any Infocom adventures in this thread, I missed it. A Mind Forever Voyaging is probably one of the best that Infocom ever did. Any game whose protagonist is a sentient computer program, and still manages to get you emotionally involved, is clearly doing something right.

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Rama

Based on the books by Arthur C. Clarke (he actually makes appearances in the game, explaining why you died for instance), it's still one of my favorites due to the excellent setting and atmosphere. Combined with the writing of Clarke, the prerendered screens and the HQ captured video of the actors superimposed on it, it really captured a feeling of alienness. The only low part was a timed puzzle at the end. Now I want to play it again. :(

Rama! I loved it! I have very fond memories of the scope and feeling of that game!

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No one mentioned The X-Files Game? Came on like 8 discs or something, lol. But for a crazy X-Files fan like me it was amazing. Even if it got pretty bad scores in magazines etc.

Well, I'm with you! I was a big X-Files fan and I loved the game! I did have to chuckle at how LITTLE screen time Mulder and Sculley had in the game! On of the fun FMV games!

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uppeli, you beat me to Teen Agent. I remember playing the demo for that, back in the day, and loving it. I mean, in what other game could you get a kaleidoscope to trade to a guard for a magazine in order to bribe your Drill Instructor? Or rip the light from the ceiling, attach the leads to the door of your cell, and electrocute him in order to swipe his key and escape? How about drugging pigeons, using hand grenades on locked drawers, or other such hijinks? And that was the demo!

I'll pitch one in that I haven't seen mentioned here:

The White Chamber

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A young girl wakes to find herself inside a strange glowing coffin, in a dark room. Who is she? What is this place? Why is she here? As she explores the warped environment she finds herself trapped within, she must search for answers, all of which will lead her closer and closer to the white chamber and the truth it holds.

wc_ss1_thumb.png wc_ss2_thumb.png wc_ss4_thumb.png

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(Click Thumbnails for full image)

A buddy of mine had the above wallpaper on his desktop, and when I asked what it was, he gave me a look that said 'I believed in your true gamer heritage, but you've failed me'.

Or, maybe it was just one that said 'WHUT'. Anyway, he pushed me back into my room, brought up the website, and told me to play it or else. So, I did. And I highly recommend it to anyone who likes a Sci-fi horror in an adventure game setting.

The White Chamber is completely free to play, and can be downloaded from Studio Trophis.

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The Journeyman Project trilogy. For some reason no one I talk to EVER seems to have heard of these, but IMO they're brilliant. The first one is a bit rough around the edges, but 2 and 3... mmmh. Love.

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Played Legacy of Time a while back and it made me smile. Tried 2 and while it was hard to get into I enjoyed it! It would be amazing it there was a kickstarter on another. I would definitely support it! I miss Arthur!

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I have yet to play it but Beneath the Steel Sky is free to download from them.

Beneath_a_Steel_Sky_-_2.jpg

That's the first one that came to mind. I was lucky enough to have this game pre-installed on the first computer I ever known (my parents bought it from one of their cousin) and I fell in love with it (keep in mind that, on top of that, I was 9 and this was my first ever adventure game).

Later, the game was released for iOS and I was really excited to replay it. The game is just as awesome today.

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Heck! I LOVED Commander Blood! A friend of mine and I both played it and thought it was one of the most unique games ever played.

Any text adventure really would be obscure (and most are free legit now a days) probably (There's one alice in wonderland text adventure that is damn hard).

Some really good mentions listed here. I think the only adventure game I have that most no one will know is Commander Blood- an FMV game. Weird Ass game and I've never been able to beat it, but the FMV is fantastic. I think its a sequel but ive never been able to discover much about it.

Just some pics from the beginning video:

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Theres some video of it on youtube. I dont know of a way to get the game these days, but I still I have the original CD. This and some other weird Mindscape FMV stuff (like Megarace).

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Thanks for reminding me about Deathgate. My mother and sister where total junkies of those books and I remember playing that game with them back in the day.

I don't think it's all that obscure but just in case it is I'll mention The Book of Living Magic by Jonas Kyratzes. He's a highly under appreciated game developer.

More relevant to this topic though I want to mention Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou. It's not the best adventure game but it's got a special place for being mindbogglingly insane.

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I second:

- Beneath a Steel Sky

- I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream

- Blade Runner

I can wholeheartedly recommend:

The Chzo Myth Quadrilogy

In order: "5 Days a Stranger", "7 Days a Skeptic", "Trilby's Notes" and "6 Days a Sacrifice"

One of the most atmospheric (and scary) adventure series I've ever played - it's fully independent and 8-bit.

You can download the series here: http://www.fullyramblomatic.com/games.htm

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Sierra's Manhunter: New York

One of the lesser known Sierra adventures, Manhunter: New York (and its sequel, Manhunter: San Francisco) depict a a dystopic future in which humanity has been enslaved by Aliens. Rudimentary point-and-click interface.

Manhunter-New-York-Sierra-Evryware.png

Molleindustria's Every Day the Same Dream

More recent, this small, existentialist Flash adventure lets you live the same nihilistic dream over and over again.

Play it here: http://www.molleindustria.org/everydaythesamedream/everydaythesamedream.html

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The Path

The path is a surrealist, open-ended horror adventure ... "game" is the wrong word - rather: "landscape", based on the Little Red Riding Hood fairy tale.

More info here: http://tale-of-tales.com/ThePath/

ThePathRobin2009040817475700002_300x300.jpg

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how about Hollywood Monsters? The 2nd game from Pendulo Studios, makers of the Runaway series. I never could find out if there was an english translation of this floating out there that reviewers received. The game always looked amazing to me. I've never played it

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It patch with English subtitles was just released. You can download it at:

http://shinji-nerd-life.blogspot.com/2012/03/hollywood-monsters-in-english-part-2.html

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I'm a little surprised no one has mentioned Heart of China and Rise of the Dragon yet!

I was really loving these two back in the day, especially because they looked incredible, especially Heart of China with its hand painted backgrounds mixed with the "photorealistic" images of the actors.

Heart of China

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Rise of the Dragon

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Sanitarium (video game)

Sanitarium.jpg

I liked that game. It was delightfully odd. When I finished it, I was not entirely surprised by the ending.

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Mentioned only once in this thread, but deserves some extra love - Igor: Objective Uikokahonia. Pretty straightforward game but with some cool (for the time) graphics and pretty awesome mood. :)

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http://www.mobygames.com/game/dos/igor-objective-uikokahonia

Wow, I didn't know there was an English version of this game! It's the first game by Pendulo Studios (as far as I know) and one could already notice how much these guys seem to love classic LucasArts-y adventures. Not a too long game (I've always thought that the maze in the middle was a way to try make it a bit longer), but with nice puzzles and funny moments.

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