Darkness Within, a Member Review :)

Posted by: Tracy

Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/18/07 09:15 PM

Hi everyone. I haven't been around in a long time because I was obsessed w/ Oblivion on the Darkside and didn't come up for air til recently. The first adventure game I grabbed when I came back to the Lightside was "Darkness Within", and I'm so glad that I did!

I haven't finished the game and am very much still playing it, but I couldn't resist saying a few words about it in case there are some people who want to give it a shot but haven't bought it yet and are wondering what it's like. smile

First of all, it may have taken Lighthouse Interactive a long while to get the game onto the shelves, but the time spent on production was well-worth it. The game is very polished, very professionally done, and the graphics (always my favorite part of a game) are just stunning.

The scenes are beautifully made, depicting offices, victorian home interiors and spooky outdoor shots with loving attention. One of the neat things to me is that this game takes place in 2011, yet the whole tone of it is circa 1930's, so the player feels like he's very much in the past rather than in the future.

On the gamebox are the words, "A chilling horror adventure inpsired by the works of H. P. Lovecraft". And it's easy to see this inspiration from the get-go. The music, the typed-out diary pages, the chill of "something has happened, but what?"...all combine to give any Lovecraft addict a sweet taste of the Master's work. I'm currently re-reading Lovecraft's stories and as I slip from computer game to bedtime books, there is hardly a blip. For me it's as if ol' H. P.'s spirit is living within this game, and that image lends a wonderful richness and depth to the exploration of the games' many settings.

The music and sounds for Darkness Within were well-chosen too, with just enough sublety that they don't get in the way of the exploration, but just enough "umph" that they stir the hairs on the back of your head as you wander about the halls and tunnels that contain Darkness' mysteries. I am very impressed with the sounds in this game, and that's saying alot because in general when I play a computer game, I turn off the sound and dig into the graphics. For this game though, I feel the need to not only turn on the sound, but to also turn off the lights and put on headphones so as to really become absorbed in the audio. (which btw, in the dark w/ headphones is scary! Ack!)

In all of the creepiness, you the player are not only getting the experience of being scared while staring at pretty graphics, which can sometimes happen in other games. In this one you get to put on your thinking cap and play detective. Not only are you on the hunt for missing P.I. Loath Nolder, but in searching for his whereabouts you also become involved with one of Loath's own cases, that of the murdered Clark Field. Why did Nolder leave the country for five years after taking on this case? Was it connected to Field's interest in the occult? And what happened to Loath Nolder once he returned from his escape to Africa and Oceana? Was that too tied to the Clark Field case or was it something more?

As someone who is still near the beginning of this game, I can't say for sure. (and wouldn't even if I knew---that might ruin it for the rest of you guys!) But I can say that as I tip-toe my way through this game, with only my wits and my notes at hand to help me, I can't help feeling like this mystery is not going to be an easy one to solve.

However, there are lots of in-game helps for the amateur detective so you're not totally on your own. Along with hints there is a neat tool (which is a little tricky and one I am still learning how to use) where you can take objects and combine them, then have your character "think" about them and what they mean. Also, when reading through books, diaries, papers, etc. you can underline clues that seem important and thinking about those as well; often adding new topics and new clues to follow up as you go. Sometimes just looking at photos will move you forward. Other times connecting certain books to others will help you leap forward and into the next part of the game...it's all a matter of reading and re-reading items until they've made their hidden clues visible. Not easy, but the challenge is fun; I always enjoy it when a game makes me work for what I want and teases my intellect just enoough to make me feel involved, but not frustrated. This game does this beautifully, IMO, and whenever I log out of it I find myself curled up in bed thinking about what I need to do next; so I'm not just "haunted" by the game's ambience, I'm also haunted in a different way, by those things that still need attention and how I'm going to solve their riddles so that I can move on to the next part of the story.

All in all I have to give this game a 10/10 so far for the way it has completely captured my imagination. I really haven't felt this "into" and excited about an adventure game in a long time and I'm so tickled that it is waiting for me now, even as I type this.

In fact, I fear I must go for now because I sense that something is waiting for me beneath the darkness, something that wants to get me. I don't know what it is, but I think that perhaps it pursed Loath Nolder as well and that is why he disappeared. Perhaps it is also why we have not been able to find him despite his return to our country.

If I find him and figure out the mysteries during my travels, I will let you know. And if I don't...well, then I am either in the local sanitarium (again), or they've found me...

Whoever and whatever "they" might be...

smile

Hope you guys enjoy the game as much as I am!

Shivers and hugs,
Cat
Posted by: Marian

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/18/07 10:27 PM

This was a great read, Cat; your enthusiasm for the game is palpable. smile

It's sitting right here in my to-play pile!! thumbsup
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 01:32 AM

Catbelly -- thanks for your impressions of the game -- beautifully written!

I'm very curious to know what you think when you get to the end. scared
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 08:06 AM

thanks Catbelly! A great read and a great recommendation for the game wave
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 08:30 AM

Catbelly,

Very good review about Darkness, i finished game yesterday and i must to say that i agree it is an excellent adventure for sure one of the best of the year.
I would like to say that i do not agree with a review of Adventure Gamers with rate of 2.5 to Darkness is very unfair to the game.
Posted by: old lady

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 09:29 AM

Great review Catbelly thanks
Click to reveal..
you will find a suprise at the end as it will give you a score and tell you how many hidden clues you missed


A great reason to play it again

Posted by: chrissie

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 03:37 PM

Thanks catbelly for a great review - it's certainly caught my interest & imagination! smile
Posted by: Tracy

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/19/07 03:53 PM

Thanks so much you guys. I'm glad ya liked my little take on Darkness Within and I hope you enjoy it as much as I'm enjoying it! smile

Also, I am so surprised that anyone could rate this game so low! What the heck were they thinking? grrrrr

Cat
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/20/07 11:28 PM

Cat, I'm playing this game now too and I agree with you. I'm really enjoying it. This is one of the scariest games I've played. I don't get scared easily by games but this one does the trick. It's really well done and I'm enjoying it immensely. I didn't read the AG's review but can't imagine what their problem was with the game. I think it's one of the best!

Melanie
Posted by: Tracy

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/20/07 11:57 PM

Hi Melanie. I'm so glad that you're enjoying it too! Isn't it fun when you're really wanting to find a great game and one comes along that really just does it for you? I love that!

sigh....

smile Cat
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/21/07 09:57 PM

Sure thing! I just lost my whole game and have to start from scratch though! Everyone, install the patch first!!! There are gamestopping glitches where you can lose inventory and if you are stupid like me and forget to back up your saves, you will lose your game if you go install the patch afterwards. I'm looking for a saved game now so I don't have to go back to the beginning. hardwall

I got lucky and Vista backed up my saves and I didn't have to restart my game. I was able to move them back but I don't know if xp will so beware if you install the patch after starting the game!
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/22/07 05:24 AM

Melanie -- are you saying that when you install the patch, all previous saves are corrupted?
Posted by: Winfrey

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/23/07 11:32 AM

I agree- I just finished the game-- I really liked it- looking forward to D2.
Although I must admit-- the thought machine was trying at times- I just did not get the what to I mix up to think about. I found that confusing-- other than that it was great!!
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/24/07 12:51 AM

They weren't corrupted but they were not compatible. Vista made them compatible but I don't know if they will be in XP.
Posted by: Tracy

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/24/07 06:05 PM

Hi Winfrey. Just wanted to say that I totally get you about having trouble with the thinking part. It could definitely get frustrating, especially when it would say, "There's nothing to think about!" LOL! And I would be thinking, "Yes there is! I just don't know how to make you do it!" LOL LOL

Ah well, aside from that little quibble I really did love the game. I just wish it wasn't over, darn it!

Cat saying Merry Christmas to all and to all, a good night!
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/27/07 12:33 PM

Hey melanie,

I have the same error with the darkness within and secret atlantis, is a problem for windows vista. Luck i could finish darkness but secret atlantis i lost every saves.
Posted by: Darleen03

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 12/29/07 09:58 PM

Very Nice catbelly36..

I did find that thinking combination a little bit of a pain to learn. I did enjoy this game also immensely...

Thanks again...
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/06/08 11:01 PM

I have to correct myself about my game being corrupted. It was. I'll have to start over. The door would not work for me. That's the door that has the puzzle on it. The handle finally turned after refusing to for umpteen times but still did not open. So in other words, applying the patch ruined the game.
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/07/08 07:53 AM

Melanie, that is awful!
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/08/08 07:31 AM

ARGHGHGHGHGH! Are you going to reinstall without the patch? Or microwave the patch? laugh

I've written to the publisher about the problems with the patch, but haven't heard anything about a resolution. I suspect that, at some point, there will be another patch to fix the first one.
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 01:53 AM

I haven't decided yet. I'm too frustrated with the publisher. It's a great game and they ruined it for me. I may reinstall and play with the patch from the beginning if I see that enough people played with it without problems. If not, I'll play without it. GRRRR! Not for a while though. I'll have to get over my mad. smile

I'm playing Vampire Bloodlines Masquerade and Oblivion right now instead. To top it all off, I got Culpa Innata and it was a defective disc! I just sent it back for an exchangee! I don't know about the way these adventures are being made! They're good games finally, but what are they doing when it comes to production? I guess I'll just have fun on the dark side for a while. lol.
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 02:00 AM

Melanie -- there's a post in the developer's Darkness Within forum here that might help.

Also, if you're feeling adventurous laugh you could try testing the new patch they are working on -- info is here.

I hope you begin having better gaming experiences! Were you able to get the Culpa disk replaced easily?
Posted by: Kriskips

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 12:34 PM

I am playing Darkness Within on a Vista computer and had all kinds of problems after installing the patch. It was during the holidays and the forums were shut down. However, I did discover that if I just re-installed the patch each time and started the game from the prompt, everything ran smoothly. Unfortunately, I did have to start over because my saved games were not recognized and I couldn't find them anywhere.

I love this game, though, so it was worth the effort. This is the type of game that made me fall in love with adventure games in the first place.
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 04:13 PM

Becky,
I was able to send the Culpa Innata disc back but not get a new one. They said they couldn't get anymore so are refunding it plus shipping to me. I'll have to reorder it somewhere else. I guess adventure games haven't been lucky for me lately. I bought 2 new ag's and 1 had a defective disc and the other had a defective patch!

I'll check out those DW links Becky, thanks. I'm really having fun with Vampire though so don't think I'll try Darkness Within again right now.

Kriskips, I solved the problem of the disappearing saves in Vista after installing the patch but it didn't do any good because the games were corrupted. I didn't know they were corrupted until I came to the door puzzle and it just wouldn't work.

To get the saves back in vista, all you have to do is click the sentence on top of the window that says compatibility and it will bring you to the new folder it created for you where it moved your saves. Just copy those saves and paste them back into your game where they belong and give the computer the administrator permission to do so. Like I said, mine were corrupt. Yours may not be though. I don't know if it always ruins them or if it's the luck of the draw but I wouldn't try adding a patch to a game in progress again. In fact, I haven't decided if I want to try the patch at all again. smile

Edit: Becky, I just checked out those links. It doesn't sound too promising. I think when I'm ready to go back, I may just back up my saves up to the point where I enter the room of the door puzzle, uninstall the game and the patch, and play unpatched now that I know where the unpatched version has problems and what causes them, I can probably avoid them as I did not have problems before I added that (%#@!!) rotten patch in the first place.
Posted by: chrissie

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 04:14 PM

Thanks catbelly for such an energetic review! - it just turned up on my doorstep today! happydance I'm so behind with so many great games yet to play so may be some time before I get round to it but yet another to look forward to!! Sorry that some of you are having problems with patches etc - hope things get sorted out! smile thanks
Posted by: Kriskips

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 04:25 PM

Thanks, Melanie, but it turned out OK. It took me about an hour to get back to where I was in the game and I actually discovered some things I had missed.
Posted by: Tracy

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 07:16 PM

You're so welcome, Chrissie! Glad ya enjoyed the review and I hope you enjoy the game just as much as I did! smile

Cat
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/09/08 07:26 PM

Melanie -- I had only one minor graphical glitch while playing the game, and that was solved by hitting the "Escape" key. The game certainly can be played unpatched!
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 01/10/08 07:40 PM

I'm glad it turned out alright anyway Kriskips.

The funny thing is Becky, I didn't have any problems with the game before I added the patch, just thought I might have because I didn't expect the leaf to dissappear! I will probably be playing with no patch next time and will try to use my saves.
Posted by: Terroulini

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 11:18 AM

I HAD to play this game after reading this wonderful review!!Thanks a lot Catbelly bravo I have a question though,do I have to use the patch to play,because I`ve heard a lot of people having problems with it.Thanks again! wave


PS.I haven`t installed it yet.
Posted by: PMcOuntry

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 11:42 AM

I have a question. I've been toying with the idea of buying this game but... I don't like really spooky/horror genre so, would you put this more detective/adventure or more horror?
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 12:26 PM

Patricia, I haven't played this one yet. But someone who has will be along soon to answer your question. Stay tuned wave
Posted by: Melanie1

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 01:16 PM

Hi Looney and Patricia,

This is definitely a horror game though it is a great detective game also. It's very scary though so if you don't like scary games you may not like it.

Melanie
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 01:25 PM

thanks Melanie

That's what I thought, but couldn't say with any certainty. wave
Posted by: PMcOuntry

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/03/08 06:55 PM

No I don't like really scary games, I don't mind some creepy aspects but beyond that nah. I'll skip this one.
Posted by: Tracy

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/04/08 12:18 AM

Hi Terroulini. I'm so glad the review helped! smile smile

Let's see, I didn't have to use the patch, but I've read that some other gamers have, so I'd say if you encounter trouble along the way, ya might want to download the patch and have it on your PC so you'll be able to run it just in case. smile

Have fun w/ the game!
Cat
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/04/08 02:06 AM

Terroulini -- I played the game unpatched (on Win XP) and experienced only one minor glitch -- a white screen that disappeared when I hit the escape key.

People did have problems with the first version of the patch. The second version of the patch has just been released, and it's a bit early to tell whether there will be problems with it, though the one person I've seen post about it did not have problems with this second version (using Vista).
Posted by: Terroulini

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/05/08 07:18 PM

Thanks guys you are a big help! wave
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/24/08 05:18 AM

I have to say this game will haunting me. There are so many good reviews and thought from all of you and i simply don't have the courage to play this game. My heart was beating like crazy in my first nightmare in the game (not to mention the second one). I didn't get very far after that? Why would he have to return in that spooky house? Anyway i think it's going to be worse from what i read. When i was reading Lovecraft in the past i wouldn't imagine that i couldn't play a game based in his novels. I want to play it but i don't think i can. Pity... blush cry
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/24/08 09:24 AM

Ah Volkana, you just need someone to play it with you. wave
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/25/08 05:19 AM

That's it L4L! You are right... maybe that will be the end to my problems blush
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/25/08 07:49 AM

Volkana -- I've recruited family members to play adventures with me and it adds a new dimension to the experience (this assumes you don't mind someone else dominating the mouse.) lol

Anyone there you can "influence"?
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/25/08 11:33 AM

Well i will try that as soon as a find a volunteer lol
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/25/08 12:46 PM

grin I'll see if I can order one from the catalog for you. (If only it were that easy.)
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/26/08 03:41 PM

yes... if only were that easy... smile
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 01:41 AM

lol I'm frequently surprised at individual reactions to games -- some people find a certain game terrifying, and other people say that it didn't frighten them at all.

Maybe there's a silver lining. Now that you know that you don't enjoy a game as scary as Darkness Within, you have a benchmark. In the future, when a new horror game releases, you can ask about the horror factor compared to Darkness Within in order to decide if you'll like it or not before you buy.
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 02:04 AM

My problem is that although that i know a game may be terrifying i want to play it. Darkness within is terrifying but it's also a very nice game with a very nice story. I'll try to fight my fear. I think one way or another i'll play it... The only person that i know to accompany my is even worse than i am. he is scared to death lol
Posted by: Becky

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 04:37 AM

Well, you could take turns with the mouse -- one of you playing while the other sits well back, ready to run. lol

I'm laughing because the first scary game I played was Dark Fall: The Journal with my husband. We have rolling desk chairs at the computer, and every time we'd open a new door in the game, we'd both find outselves kicking back from the computer and rolling backwards in our chairs.

I've also found that muting the sound removes some of the scare factor -- sometimes quite a bit of the scare factor.
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 09:15 AM

That sounds like fun. I guess i have to find someone brave enough to control the mouse.
I can't play a game with someone that has his eyes closed all the time and asks me "Is it over?". My first scary game was Dark Fall lights out, but i thing Darkness Within is much worse. Way to scarring...
You are right about the sound...
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 09:19 AM

Volkana, if you really want to play it, can you play it with the lights on and the tv or the radio so you don't get too immersed in the game?
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 10:28 AM

Volkana is really scared game but is so good. But i feeling much more scared with scratches, you already played?
I love this kind of adventures, very scary. I love series Dark Fall(i cant await for Lost Crown)Barrow Hill(you already play?),Scratches, Darkness and other adventures very scary!!Haha evil

Love Maria hearts
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 10:50 AM

I only have played Scratches and Dark fall 2... I didn't find them as scary as Darkness Within... smile
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/27/08 01:26 PM

You play Barrow Hill?
Darkness is very scary and is a great game. You played Dark Fall: The Journal?
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/28/08 12:21 AM

No i didn't Phoebe... Are they good (except scary of course)... smile
Posted by: looney4labs

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/28/08 09:07 AM

Volkana, I haven't played Barrow Hill, but Dark Fall: The Journal is excellent. puppy
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/28/08 09:42 AM

Volkana Dark Fall:The Journal is a great game, much better that Dark Fall:Lighs Outs. And Barrow Hill also is a good game.
You must play both games
Posted by: Volkana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/28/08 10:19 AM

I'll keep that in mind... Thanks Phoebe... grin
Posted by: Leeana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 03/02/08 10:08 AM

nothing was as scary to me as delaware stjohn in the firt 30 minutes of that game I thought I was a gonner but I did it I finished ... now its Darkness within I had to put it away far away so I dont hear ....howard..... eek
Posted by: Phoebe

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 03/04/08 03:47 PM

Hey leeana i not think delaware more scary that Darkness and Scratches. You already played scratches?
Posted by: Leeana

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 03/06/08 02:16 PM

yes I did smile wave
Posted by: kozykat60

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/14/11 07:10 PM

I heard this was a good game, just where can you download it from and how much do you have to pay for it?
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 02/14/11 10:11 PM

You can download it from the Adventure Shop (button on the top of the forum for 9.99) or us this link here.

Ana wave

Posted by: kl604

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 08/17/11 04:02 AM

Downloaded this in a 2 pack bundle with the first Darkness Within from AdventureShop. The first won't play because it won't install correctly and AdventureShop is ABSOLUTELY WORTHLESS when it comes to support....never buying from them again..EVER! This one is ok so far though sometimes you're supposed to see things that aren't there...like footprints. The active spot is there but not the footprints.


BEWARE buying anything from AdventureShop...twice now I've downloaded games that wouldn't install or play correctly and they are WORTHLESS at support and do not refund or credit.
Posted by: MaG

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 08/17/11 09:35 AM

Are you sure it is not your computer specs?

Since they are at the convention right now - I'll see what they say when they get back.
Posted by: kl604

Re: Darkness Within, a Member Review :) - 08/17/11 06:25 PM

I get error code 740 when trying to install the first game. It states that the .exe file could not be launched to install direct x for some reason. Tried copying direct x from the second game in the bundle which plays fine but that didn't work either. Physx is also missing from the install folder of the first game but present in the one that plays fine.

BTW... thanks MAG!