BLACKWELL EPIPHANY

 

Genre:   Adventure

Developer & Publisher:  Wadjet Eye Games

Released:  April 2014

PC Requirements:  

  • OS: Windows ME or higher

  • Processor: Pentium or higher

  • Memory: 64 MB RAM

  • Graphics: 640x400, 32-bit colour: 700 Mhz system minimum

  • DirectX: Version 5.2

  • Hard Drive: 350 MB available space

  • Sound Card: All DirectX-compatible sound cards

Additional screenshots

 

 

 

by flotsam

Blackwell Epiphany

Wadjet Eye

Over the course of the four previous games, we have come to know Rosa and Joey, the odd couple investigators of the not so normal. By switching between the two at will, and using the different abilities of a ghost and a psychic, we have helped many a poor soul cross over into the next realm, and helped resolve a few normal world mysteries along the way. Staying tried and true to its point and click roots, and its pixelly old world look and feel, each game, and the series as a whole, has been a satisfying dose of what makes adventure gaming good.

The fifth and final instalment is no exception.

1.   a sudden, intuitive perception or insight

We start mundanely enough, outside in the cold at night with a fifth cup of coffee, and soon to have a reason to be inside.  A soul needs helping, and we kick into gear. We have been here before and we know what to do. Except when it gets literally torn apart, and helping ghosts move on becomes a whole lot darker.

Epiphany works as a standalone game, but there are answers and threads that require an involvement in the series to appreciate.  It does a good job of tying things up, including some big things, and the end is unexpected but in retrospect perhaps not surprising. What you think of it will be a matter of taste, flavoured perhaps by whether or not you have played the earlier games.

Dave Gilbert does write a good game, which is a whole lot harder (I suspect) than writing good dialogues or reviews. The details, the trappings and the nuances are as important as the plots and the big pictures. Kudos to him for Joey and Rosa.

Kudos as well to Ben Chandler for the background art. The pixellness canít hide the style inherent in the game world, and itís every bit as impressive as a more mainstream product.

2.   an appearance or manifestation, especially of a deity

Epiphany does bog down a little bit after the middle, but generally moves along nicely. It isnít a hard game, and can be assisted by having Rosa or Joey cogitate on what their next move might be. This assists the pace, and the story telling, to flow rather than lurch.

The puzzling is embedded in the game and is generally intuitive and down to earth (taking into account the context). Information can be utilised as much as objects, giving it the detective feel that an investigation  needs. It isnít perfect, but it does an admirable job.

The mechanics remain as they are in the earlier games. While walking through locked doors is good for exploring, not being able to interact with things (expect for a gentle puff of breath) means Joey can pass on information but Rosa will still have to find a key if she is going to join him on the other side of the door. How you get them to work together is one of the many things that adds to the Blackwell experience.

Itís a good final instalment and not everything is. It was probably right to end as well, and not everything knows when that should happen, or has the courage to do so (think of way too many TV series you can name and even a gaming franchise or two). Wadjet Eye has come a long way in not even 10 years, and on the strength of this will go a lot further yet.

Grade: A-

I played on:

OS: Windows 7

Processor: Intel i7-3820 4GHz

RAM: 12GB Ripjaw DDR3 2133 Mhz

Video card: AMD Radeon HD 7800 2048MB

 

 

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