Unforeseen Incidents



Genre:    Adventure 

Developer:   Backwoods Entertainment, Application Systems Heidelberg

Publisher:   Application Systems Heidelberg  

Released:   May 23, 2018              

Requirements (minimum):

  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit or higher 
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz or higher
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 1024 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 6 GB available space
  • DirectX: Version 11



By venus


Unforeseen Incidents

Backwoods Entertainment, Application Systems Heidelberg

The city of Yelltown has been stricken with a terrible disease, dubbed “Yelltown Fever.” Those that contract it die very shortly after exhibiting the first symptoms. Early in the game, our protagonist, handyman Harper Pendrell, discovers a victim of the disease, bleeding from her nose and mouth. She begs Harper not to call for help from the RHC, which Harper doesn’t understand. Why would she not want the doctors to help her? Whether or not you choose to call the RHC yourself, they will be contacted, and the woman will be taken away, but not before she gives you an envelope with the request to contact someone named Helliwell.

With the encouragement of his friend, a scientist named Dr. Rupert MacBride, Harper seeks out and eventually finds Jane Helliwell, who turns out to be a reporter investigating the cause of Yelltown fever, and what RHC’s true motivations are. The three of them form a team to sneak into the RHC treatment camp to see what they can find out. Afterward, events lead Harper to several locations outside of Yelltown, where he will make some shocking discoveries.

The story in the game is well presented, and the characters are generally very likable. Harper himself reminds me of Roger Wilco from the Space Quest series, in that he is naturally lazy and a bit of a reluctant lead, yet rises to the occasion as his adventure demands it. The voice actors’ performances are all strong across the board, and I found it entertaining to go through all of the dialogues. Much of the writing was comical, which may seem odd given the subject matter, but I thought it worked well for the most part. Harper had a quip for pretty much every inventory item or piece of scenery he examined. Jane Helliwell, who came across as assertive and competent, played the straight man to Harper’s goofy persona on several occasions. The two of them made a likable, entertaining team throughout a good portion of the game.

The graphics are very beautiful, some screens more vibrant, others dark and muted, all done in a sketchy style that served the quirkiness of the game’s characters. The occasional close ups of individual characters during the conversations were a bit blurry, though I thought that the close ups where two characters were displayed together were fine.

The puzzles are fantastic, some of the better puzzles I’ve encountered in more recent adventure games. Several involve using Harper’s multi-tool, an essential object befitting his handy man vocation. There are also several inventory items players will find throughout the adventure, many of which are used in inventive ways. There are many other types of puzzles as well, some of which include tuning into the correct radio frequency and mysterious hacking mini games in between acts. Pressing the space bar will highlight all available hotspots in each screen. It took me a minute to realize that the left and right mouse click do the same thing, as examining some items will elicit a few different comments from Harper. After having realized this, I just used the left mouse button for everything. Right clicking inventory items after they are picked up, however, will cause Harper to provide a description of these items.

There is one timed puzzle fairly early in the game. I didn’t find it too difficult once I figured out what I had to do, but it took a few tries, and I have seen some complaints about it elsewhere. Those that are uninterested or frustrated by such puzzles may want to look at a walkthrough in this particular instance. Luckily, it’s the only timed section in the game.

I also encountered a pretty serious bug, and I eventually had to consult a guide for this one. It involves putting objects down on different pedestals in a specific order. Even if the order is correct, the game often will not acknowledge it. The puzzle can be reset by entering and exiting the room, but it took me several attempts before the game actually let me progress. I checked the Steam forums, and the bug was supposedly fixed. However, I’ve encountered the issue since then, so those who run into this bug may want to check the forums as well for possible tips.

Overall, Unforeseen Incidents was a very enjoyable game. It contained dark subject matter, yet kept a light tone throughout, had many likable and/or entertaining characters to interact with and a fun mystery to solve. I look forward to playing potential future adventures developed by Backwoods Entertainment.

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November 2018

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