Demetrios: The Big Cynical Adventure


Genre:       Point-and-Click Adventure

Developer: Cowcat Games

Released:  May, 31st 2016

Supported languages : English, French, Spanish, German, Italian

Platforms : PC (Windows / Mac / Linux)

Additional screenshots 




By oldmariner


Demetrios: The Big Cynical Adventure



OS: XP, 7, 8.1, 10

Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual Core

Memory: 2 GB RAM

Graphics: Intel HD Graphics, Nvidia or ATI card with at least 256MB VRAM

DirectX: Version 9.0c

Hard Drive: 600 MB available space

Sound Card: DirextX Compatible Sound Card


OS: Snow Leopard 10.6.8 or later

Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual Core

Memory: 2 GB RAM

Graphics: Intel HD Graphics, Nvidia or ATI card with at least 256MB VRAM

Hard Drive: 600 MB available space


    Somewhere in my first look at this game I wrote, “My First Look found the game to be very well constructed, suggesting it may be worth the time to play.” I must confess I found a brief sample of this game to hold promise for what I believe is a first effort for an independent studio. What I saw in the promotion file caught my attention. In that First Look I also said the game reminded me of the first Broken Sword. In graduate school they teach you to qualify everything. With that in mind a First Look should be reserved when issuing praise because you never know.

     A few days ago I received a full DRM free version of Demetrios. I must say the subtitle, may I call it that, hits it on the head. The Big Cynical Adventure is all of that. If cynical is not your idea of the game’s humor then perhaps sarcastic, wry, or off color could be your descriptor. Fabrice Breton from St. Etienne, France, created this game in a one man shop demonstrating both his talent and determination. The questions are, did the game live up to its promise? And what is it all about?

Nuts and Bolts

     There are a full range of settings that include Display, Sound and Gameplay. I did not tweak them as the defaults ran well in my Windows 7 64 bit machine. I encountered no bugs or glitches everything ran smoothly. On the top left of the screen you will see a small icon. Clicking on it brings up the menu graphic page providing access to Options. To be brief you may set the display for 1080p or 720p. Choose full screen or windowed view. My review copy offered a choice of English, French, German, Spanish or Italian as the displayed language. From this screen you can Resume, Load, Save, alter Options and Exit the game. At the bottom of that screen you can view Cookies, Game Overs, (How many times you died), your Achievements to date and Extras. There appear to be unlimited saves and they are found hiding in your system at Users/User name/ AppData/ Local/ Demetrios/ Saves.

      It is doubtful the requirements will be a challenge for most systems. They are listed above for Windows and Mac, however the developer’s site claims the game is playable on Linux, I could not find requirements noted anywhere for that OS. The game is available from Steam or directly from Cowcat’s website where you can purchase a DRM free version + a Steam key for the same price! For a limited time they offer a disc version for those of you who miss physical CD and DVD copies you once held in your hands.

Graphics & Audio    

    Background scenes are HD drawn stills in a cartoonish style much in the form used in the first Broken Sword. Do not let stills lull you to sleep because you might miss something. The motionless backgrounds are a misnomer you will discover if you pay attention. You will see things that are easy to miss. It is subtle and artfully done, adding a nice touch to the game. If you narrow your view to the actors, you could miss a ship sinking in a lake or a bird flying by. The game is loaded with tiny tidbits you can miss if not paying attention. This first person game may be off-putting for gamers who’ve grown accustomed to professional voice acting upon discovering there is no voicing at all. It is an expected component item you’ll notice at once. Take heart your system is running just fine. The story is carried by speech printed in bubbles with a close up portrait box of the speaker on the screen. It is presented as Sierra had in Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers. Quality background music with ambient sounds are heard throughout the game.

Navigating the Adventure

      You play as Bjorn Thonen, an antique dealer living in Paris, who wakes after getting hit in the head to discover he was robbed during the night after coming home drunk. He receives no sympathy from the local police who refuse to conduct an investigation. It is not a high profile crime and according to the police, it’s too unimportant for them to waste their time. Determined, Bjorn, who appears to be a laid back underachiever that reached his limit, is spurred into action. In spite of the fact he does not know what he is doing, he recruits his friend Tom and a reluctant neighbor, Sandra to help. On the trail of a criminal, a naïve hero steps forth to begin our adventure.

       A touch I specifically enjoyed is the help system for when you confront a puzzle which confuses you or you simply don’t know what to do next. How do you get help? The answer is simple, have Bjorn eat three cookies and he will come up with a solution. But where do you get the cookies? Each screen has three cookies hidden somewhere in the background. They are not always easy to find. It is possible, if you apply due diligence, to amass a pile of cookies. Heaven knows you may need them. The puzzles are primarily inventory based with a few logic or thinking requirements thrown in for good measure. Your inventory is located at the bottom of the screen, represented by a small icon at the lower left edge.

     Tapping the space bar locates interactive items at each screen. Take your time checking everything. There is a use for everything you can pick up. There are no shortages of items to examine and plenty of locations to visit. Yes, most puzzles use inventory items and logic, demonstrated at times by a need to say the right thing to get a proper response, and taking actions to get people to leave, allowing you to go through a door and the like. For you fans of Nancy Drew the developer tossed in several mini games. You can go the fair, or fishing and so on, in fact to advance in the game you are required to do so. Instant death is also programmed in but you are returned for another try at no cost. For the fun of it, try turning on the water while sticking your finger into a wall outlet. There are lots of ways to die, some funny, some not. Never fear, they all provide instant return and free do overs.

     I've already mentioned Sandra, Bjorn's neighbor; well she has a daughter who is absolutely entertaining in this game. If for instance she was your kid, you’d be tearing your hair out trying to deal with the brat. This game does not miss a beat when applying lighthearted humor. In a later chapter you switch characters to play Sandra, but it is a brief occurrence. Caroline, the eight year old street smart daughter of Sandra comes to Bjorn’s rescue in a humorous scene. Yes, there is an ample supply of cutting edge smart remarks from this quarter.

     Just when you think you've resolved your quest by catching the bad guy, Cowcat throws you a curveball. There is much more to this adventure because you are now about at the halfway point. A twist occurs, sending our hero and Sandra with her daughter to Africa. There is far more to this story than we knew, including conspiracies, aliens, and the survival of the world in the balance.


    Demetrios is a pleasant surprise, as it’s far better than I expected when reviewing a partial game for a first look. My greatest concern was the lack of voice acting. I found shortly into the story that it does not matter. Yes, you have to read, but the script is entertaining and not demanding, like you’d find in a David Baldacci novel. The story, written by the developer Fabrice Breton, is well crafted. It does not have the depth or length of a Syberia or Longest Journey but the game is of reasonable running time and longer than I expected it to be. There are enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. The puzzles are well done and varied. The help system alone, with its creative cookie adaptation, makes this game worth a look. Mini games often wear thin with me, but I found them well done and continued on through twists and turns. By all means take a look at this game. I found it far better than some games by big production houses .


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