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Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years #1252839
07/26/21 04:15 AM
07/26/21 04:15 AM
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mike_bn Offline OP
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Hi community,

I hope it's not annoying that I am posting once again with a question. But this board simply is the most knowledgeable adventure community I am aware of, so I always end up posting my questions here :-)

I, or rather we (me and a good friend), have a very specific problem that is a bit hard to explain. So we love playing adventure games, so around 15 years ago, we created this long excel list of games we plan to play. I would guess there are almost 100 games left to play. This games were not selected randomly, but based on positive reviews. And here comes the problem: As I created this excel list 15 years ago, it obviously contains only quite old games and we played the absolute best ones of those games already. So, although the remaining games are considered also good games, they are very old and they just can't keep up with the technical quality of today's games. They simply haven't aged well. 'Faust 7 - the seven games of the Soul' - a game I played recently - would be a very good example to illustrate what I mean. It is not a bad game by any means. So it is nice, it has an interesting story, some ok puzzles and during the time it was released, it probably was a really good game. BUT: compared to today's (technical) standards, some things are just annoying: Controls are not smooth, there is always some lagging, the way the cursor moves is just not clean/precise, graphics are a bit clumsy, and overall the way games were designed was just not as polished as it its nowadays (of course, with these kind of statements, there will always be a couple of exceptions like Myst or Riven, I am just talking about a big majority of games). So if you compare the interface / the gaming experience of Faust for example with technical clean and crisp interfaces of modern games like Meridian, it is just different and the bottom line is that we are not happy with the list of games left to play. And after this long , tedious background explanation (sorry!) I can finally phrase my question:

Because we were so focused on this Excel of games older than 15 years we did not keep track of what really good games were released in let' say the last 5 years or so. Of course we are not living under a rock and some highlights came to our attention and we played them (e.g. Obduction, Life is Strange 1/2,, Rhem III SE, Walking Dead and maybe 5-8 more). But overall we feel we missed quite a few very good games that were released in the last 5 years or so.

So what I would be happy about is if you could just name a couple of games of the last 5 years or so you that you, personally, consider the best of the best from that time? Games that you will remember for a long time because you simply consider them exceptionally good and they left a lasting impression? Or point us to some top 10/20/50 game list - not of all times, but of the last 1-5 years? That would help us a lot to steer our focus more on 'modern' games rather than playing games, like 'Ween the Prophecy' or 'Ring des Nibelungen' or 'Sublustrum' which will most likely leave us a bit dissatisfied after playing them because we suspect there are much better, more 'modern' games out there.

Thanks a lot in advance to everyone who is going to post here some recommendations. And sorry for the long post,
Mike







Last edited by mike_bn; 07/26/21 04:29 AM.
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252871
07/26/21 09:00 AM
07/26/21 09:00 AM
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near Yosemite in California
Marian Offline
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I have played very few adventure games that have been released in the last five years, but your post reminded me of Adventure Gamers' annual list of the best adventure games. Perhaps looking at those lists would help get you started.

Best Adventure Games of 2020

Best Adventure Games of 2019

Best Adventure Games of 2018

Best Adventure Games of 2017

Best Adventure Games of 2016

GameBoomers has also done an annual list for years, with forum members providing lists of their favorites. However, many of the named titles are older games that go back much further than the last five years so these year-specific lists from Adventure Gamers is what I thought of for starters. Hopefully other forum members will post here and give you some additional titles.


Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252878
07/26/21 10:46 AM
07/26/21 10:46 AM
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mike_bn Offline OP
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Thanks a lot, Marian. Will definitely take a look. Other recommendations from other board members are appreciated smile

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252901
07/26/21 02:20 PM
07/26/21 02:20 PM
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I also haven't played many new releases. I mix some in with playing older games but can't think of anything to recommend.

You do know that Nemezis has been released don't you?

How did your gaming session go? Did you play Return to Mysterious Island?

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252909
07/26/21 03:09 PM
07/26/21 03:09 PM
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Hi oldbroad, thanks for responding. I am surpised that you cannot think of anything to recommend as I have the impression you play quite a lot. Seems like the majority of games you play are older games?
Yes, I know that Nemezis has been released and we played it a short while during our 3.days gaming session (which was fun of course).
We stopped quickly as I got motion sickness and as the first reviews were not overwhelmingly great, I was not motiviated to fight the sickness, so we switched to other games. Return to Mysterious Island was a candidate but we did not play it after all. We played Machinarium (we enjoyed it a lot and played it through to the end), Shivers 2 a little bit (we stopped early because controls were not so great and also we did not like two tedious slider puzzles), then Jochen played Amnesia while I played Faust. Also we played at the same time Firewatch, which we liked because its something different with a nice atmosphere. But honestly, most games were ok or even good, but looking back we regret that we did not find any absolute highlight to play and that actually was the reason why I posted this thread here. We would love to just play a really, really great game again, a game that is considered one of the best of its genre, it has been quite a while since we were really blown away by an adventure game (Rhem III SE is an exception, but it wasn't really a new game, so it does not count)

Last edited by mike_bn; 07/26/21 03:24 PM.
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252926
07/26/21 08:55 PM
07/26/21 08:55 PM
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If you are prepared to go back a bit further, to 2006, I would suggest Keepsake. I liked the story and the graphics are wonderful.

A couple of caveats, however. I found Mustavio's pseudo-Italian accent a little grating, particularly as it wasn't consistent. There are also crashes at the 2nd trial and the ship in a bottle puzzle.

Apart from that, I think the game is worth playing. Glitches will tell you how to deal with the crashes.

Cheers, barbarosso

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252955
07/27/21 11:45 AM
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mike_bn Offline OP
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Thanks for the recommendation, barbarosso, will check it out.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252966
07/27/21 01:53 PM
07/27/21 01:53 PM
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oldbroad Offline
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I guess most of the games I play are still the older ones. I just don't think you are going to find one of those "WOW" this is a really, really great game among the newer games, I'm sorry to say. I'm also sorry to hear that Nemezis was a let down for you. frown

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: oldbroad] #1252968
07/27/21 02:01 PM
07/27/21 02:01 PM
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Marian Offline
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Originally Posted by oldbroad
I just don't think you are going to find one of those "WOW" this is a really, really great game among the newer games, I'm sorry to say. frown


I agree with you. Some that might be mildly entertaining, but very few if any must-plays. I always hesitate to say this because in my case it could just be me thinking about all of the classic adventure games of the 1990s and early 2000s that I remember so well that are dear to my heart. No one has to agree with me, and I am willing to acknowledge that nostalgia plays a factor. Nevertheless, my thoughts on this remain the same: most of the newer games just don't measure up for me.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252970
07/27/21 02:07 PM
07/27/21 02:07 PM
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I would recommend Creaks from Amanita for a change of pace. flotsam's review of Creaks is here... http://www.gameboomers.com/reviews/Cc/Creaks/creaks.html

I have to agree with Marian and oldbroad - not much in newer games that really grabs me. I'm also a sucker for nostalgia for things like the original Dracula games! I find the first games I ever played to continue to make me happy, where very few of the newer ones give me the same "feels."


114 tomato plants pulled up and gardens put to sleep for the winter.
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1252974
07/27/21 02:48 PM
07/27/21 02:48 PM
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Just to clarify a bit more.

I think the game barbarosso recommended (Keepsake) was a very good game. Two of the newer games I played were Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure and Willy Morgan and the Curse of Bonetown. I did like both of them but I didn't get that "wow" feeling.

If you care for "detective-mystery" you can try Cognition. It's from 2012. I couldn't follow the story towards the end as it got too convoluted for me but from what I remember, it was a pretty good game.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: oldbroad] #1252977
07/27/21 03:12 PM
07/27/21 03:12 PM
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Marian Offline
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Originally Posted by oldbroad
Two of the newer games I played were Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure and Willy Morgan and the Curse of Bonetown. I did like both of them but I didn't get that "wow" feeling.


I have both of those games and feel the same way you do about them. They are not bad games by any means, but I don't feel like I would have missed out on much of anything if I had never played them.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253027
07/28/21 07:54 AM
07/28/21 07:54 AM
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Hey everyone, I'm curious! You seem to say that the old games were better for you than the new ones (which I can understand, and probably agree with, when I think of the first games I played too).

Then what would you say was better in the past? I'm very interested to know because, like most developers, I would like to be able to improve my games. And I can only change my mind and evolve by reading feedback and ideas, and working on them.

In my opinion there is the problem of nostalgia: the games you used to play were played in a totally different world (no, or slow internet) and in different conditions (technology, engines, hardware, culture...). And the fact that you were younger and eager to discover those games was probably a major factor.
Personally, I don't think I could ever reproduce the feeling I had when I played some specific games in the past, with new games today, because my perception is different: I have seen and learned a lot of new things, and what I used to enjoy in the past is not necessarily the same as today.

In the past there was also less choice of games, so you could focus more on solving a specific chosen one that you had purchased for a special occasion. Today there are so many cheap good games that, when a player finds a game too difficult, they just give up playing it and try another game, which wasn't necessarily the case before (particularly with adventure games).
I remember for example when I played Riven for the first time as a teen, I had to rely at some point on a walkthrough because it was way too hard for my young brain, but I really wanted to see the end of this exciting world. However today if the same Riven was released and if I was stuck, I think I would give up more easily and not be so hyped by the game... Isn't it strange? I love Riven so much, and yet I don't think I still love it as much as before. I'm pretty sure that it's not related to my tastes or to new/old games, but just to the evolution of my brain and experience.

Another point imo is that nowadays, people (both devs and players) put too much importance into graphics and art, and not enough in the story.
Would you say too that a lot of games today are missing of something?
I would say that, with less efforts put into graphics, it would be possible for some devs (including me) to make their games better. And at the same time, if we don't work hard on the graphics quality, many players complain (and I can understand why), so it's very difficult!
As a result, if we want both the beautiful graphics and the complete content, it requires a larger team and/or more funds. And as usual when you need money, you have to find it! Which is very (very) difficult when you want to do an adventure game today, as a vast majority of players don't care about the genre anymore...

What I find funny is that games are easier to create today than in the past (as long as you don't try to create AAA graphics). So with a much smaller team, it should be potentially possible to create the same quality as before, if not better. And I think that it's what is happening: we can see the birth of very good games made by small teams, and they are probably better than some of the old games that we cherish (even if we don't realize it or refuse to accept it). Then why don't we find the new ones as good as the old ones?

If, according to you, new games are not as good, I find that it's a very interesting point, because there is no reason for it to happen "technically" speaking. And the fact that so many people in the world are developing games nowadays should also mean that there are more chances to have talented creators and geniuses like the ones at Sierra, Lucas, Cyan...).

Anyway I'd like to read more about this if possible, so please continue to share your thoughts!

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: Marian] #1253048
07/28/21 12:55 PM
07/28/21 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Marian
Originally Posted by oldbroad
Two of the newer games I played were Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure and Willy Morgan and the Curse of Bonetown. I did like both of them but I didn't get that "wow" feeling.


I have both of those games and feel the same way you do about them. They are not bad games by any means, but I don't feel like I would have missed out on much of anything if I had never played them.


How we differ !! lol

I haven't played Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure yet but I thought Willy Morgan was a pretty good game.
Certainly more to my taste than a lot of the releases of the last few years yes

EDIT :

Sorry, Simon. I wasn't ignoring your post.

I agree with you that high end graphics do seem to have become the "be all and end all" requirement of some modern developers (and some gamers) thus overriding everything else.
But also, for me, the subject matter of many games these days seems to be veering more towards the "deep and profound" realm than where I, personally, want to be.
I think, maybe, I am happier to be entertained, amused and possibly challenged on a rather more mundane level ?? lol

Last edited by Mad; 07/28/21 01:16 PM.

Time : The Most Precious Commodity
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253051
07/28/21 01:00 PM
07/28/21 01:00 PM
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Mad, I also thought Willy Morgan was a pretty good game and I agree with what you said about it. I just did not think it was a must-play. wave

Simon, I am thinking about your post. smile

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: Marian] #1253052
07/28/21 01:19 PM
07/28/21 01:19 PM
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OK. Perhaps not a "must" play. Although whilst I was playing it I did feel compelled to find out what would be happening next grin


Time : The Most Precious Commodity
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253059
07/28/21 03:03 PM
07/28/21 03:03 PM
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I would like to play all the games I have whether I will find a "wow" in them or not. Most of the games I play have things I like about them and some may have things I don't like about them, but I still am glad to have played them.

I think what Simon said and what Marian also mentioned is a big part of it. The games you started with just stick in your mind. When you first discovered gaming and said "wow, this is so cool", AND my life was different then too, so replaying those games brings back different "life feelings" too. Also what Mad said about the "type" of games being produced now. I like the look and sound of some of them but they are a different type than what wows me, if that makes sense.

I really enjoy what I call Epic Sagas or Journeys which could really describe a lot of games I think (but in my mind) these are games like Amerzone, Paradise, Syberia, and the Aura games.

I also want to point out that my comment (which I still stand by) was directed to Mike based on reading posts by him about games he seems to like. For example, I like the Carol Reed games a lot but I don't think they are games that Mike would like.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253090
07/29/21 05:23 AM
07/29/21 05:23 AM
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I've just thought of some games which might be of interest.

Dark Eye: the Chains of Satinav. Its sequel Dark Eye: Memoria is disappointing.

I will admit, I like FMV games so I will suggest Yoormurjak's Ring and Miazma, both from Private Moon Studios.

If you like spooky games, Jonathan Boakes's The Lost Crown is worth a look. I was a little disappointed with it.

I do feel the essential part of a good adventure game is the story. If the puzzles can be then integrated well even better. Add very good graphics and you may have a real winner.

I've been playing adventures since Colossal Caves, but I don't regard that as the acme of adventure games. Obviously quest type adventures lend themselves well to adventure games.

Above all, I think good games should be a cerebral experience, so I don't like timed action, or action. One needs time to think.

Cheers, barbarosso

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253100
07/29/21 10:52 AM
07/29/21 10:52 AM
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mike_bn Offline OP
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Hi guys, thanks for all recommendations, will comment later, currently a bit busy.

@Simon: I think you raised some interesting questions/points which I would love to read more about. I will try to find the time to post my point
of view soon. I don't think I have brilliant insights, just a few points, so I would love to read what other people think.
One thing in short already: while nostalgia and the own age play a role, I don't think this explains everything.
Also your post once again shows me what a sincere, ambitious developer you are, trying to find answers to those points,
striving to grow as a developer. Hats off to you, man.

Last edited by mike_bn; 07/29/21 10:53 AM.
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1253986
08/09/21 09:04 PM
08/09/21 09:04 PM
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Try Kathy Rain and Whispers of a Machine. Also Gray Matter.


I love playing adventure games like Gemini Rue on my ipad mini and Gray Matter on my PC Netbook.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1254128
08/12/21 01:33 PM
08/12/21 01:33 PM
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Here is a list of games that I think should be played. Are they the best of the best? I dont know, that is very subjective.. Im sure I have forgotten more than I remembered.

Lost Horizon
Puzzle Agent - both
A New Beginning
Gray Matter
The Next Big Thing
Gemini Rue
Alpha Polaris
All Blackwell Games
The Silent Age
Deponia Series
Resonance
The Dark Eye: Chains of Satinav
Edna & Harvey - both
Cognition
Primordia
The Night of the Rabbit
The Raven
Face Noir
Broken Sword 5: The Serpent's Curse
The Samaritan Paradox
Tesla Effect: A Tex Murphy Adventure
Technobabylon
Fran Bow
Thimbleweed Park
Kathy Rain
Oxenfree
Annas Quest
Tales From the Borderlands
Kentucky Route Zero
The Pillars of the Earth
Trüberbrook
Kelvin and the Infamous Machine
Perils of Man
The Inner World
Dead Synchronicity

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1254130
08/12/21 01:43 PM
08/12/21 01:43 PM
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That's a good list of games. Thanks for posting it CountZero! I have every one of those but have so far only played close to half of them.

Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1254135
08/12/21 02:03 PM
08/12/21 02:03 PM
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I've been playing Black Mirror:

I 2004
II 2011
III 2011
IV 2017

Highly suggest this series...

Last edited by revco; 08/12/21 02:04 PM.

RevCo
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1254970
08/24/21 03:04 PM
08/24/21 03:04 PM
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mike_bn Offline OP
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Hi all, I was on vacation, hence the late response. Just wanted to comment that I keep following this thread and am grateful
for every post with recommendations. Thank you guys.

Last edited by mike_bn; 08/25/21 04:19 AM.
Re: Looking for great adventures from the last 5-10 years [Re: mike_bn] #1254979
08/24/21 03:46 PM
08/24/21 03:46 PM
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Hope you enjoyed your vacation!

Let us know if you try any of the recommended games and give us your thoughts on them.

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