Mr. Bill's Adventureland Review
Reviewed by Bert Jamin
In the 21st century, human society is threatened by a destroyed natural environment, cannot solve the problems of overpopulation, and suffers from poverty, organized crime and increasing forms of depression and neurological diseases. Earth is one single federation of cities. Greece is one of them. Every city-state has its own governor and local government, which is subject to the Supreme Federal Government. But the political lobbies, big companies, and organized crime impose their own order on things: a situation which most of the time surpasses the law and creates its own reality.
Nick Delios had been a top student at the University of Thessaloniki, specializing in medical software. His career was brilliant... up to the day when the head of his scientific research team, Dimitris Argyriou, a member of the scientific and business elite, presented Nick's original and revolutionary research in electronic transplants programming as his own achievement. When Nick reacted, Argyriou threw him off the team, canceling at the same time Nick's wedding with his sister, Annita. Nick, deeply hurt, abandoned his academic ambitions and adopted a bohemian way of life. After a period of living on the edge, gambling and drinking, Nick ends up earning his living as a detective, specializing in solving cases of industrial espionage by using his medical studies and his acquaintances in the underworld.
When Thanos Pekas, Police Inspector and an old friend, asks him unofficially to help him solve the murder case of a small time crook, Nick, who needs the money, accepts without suspecting where he is about to get involved. This initially simple case will lead him to a complex case of multiple conspiracies, where nothing is what it seems to be, and which even surpasses the borders of our very planet.
Conspiracies is a graphical, first person perspective, 3D, pre-rendered adventure game with a compelling Science Fiction story, combined with non-linear game play where the player chooses the order in which most of the puzzles are solved. Some features are: 2 1/4 hours of video, 22 interactions with video and 3D graphics, over 30,000 polygons per location, 1400 different textures, up to 310 puzzles, and Direct X 8.1 engine.
Let's get started...
Conspiracies offers a mix of puzzles of varied types, including mechanical, logical and inventory-based, all seamlessly integrated into the fascinating story. Some of the puzzles are easy and some of them are tough. And the story itself unfolds as an intriguing puzzle waiting to be solved. This is the first game ever published by the Greek Company, Anima Postproduction Studio. Now of course the question is, can a first game be good? Well to be brief about it: Yes, it certainly is! Conspiracies is an absolute MUST HAVE for every gamer, especially for every adventure gamer.
One of the things that makes Conspiracies so special when compared to other games is the way you can control Nick Delios in the game. And from time to time you will have conversations with other people, so you'll never have the feeling that you're just wandering all alone in the game. These conversations not only give you many useful hints to solve the puzzles, they also help you to get further in your quest.
And now let's talk about the puzzles, since I'm sure you'd like to know more about them. Well, they vary from easy to very difficult. I'm sure that even some die-hard adventure gamers will need the walkthrough that I have written (see below) to help them out in one or two (or even more?) of the toughest puzzles. Just keep it in mind, because I'm sure that when you're trying to figure out some of the puzzles all by yourself, they will keep you off the streets for many days (as they did me :-)). But hey, that's what adventures are for, right? And one thing is for sure: none of the puzzles is illogical, boring or impossible to solve.
This really is one of those few games that you keep on thinking of, even when you're not playing the game. Maybe you know that strange but very nice kind of feeling: you're shopping for groceries, and yet still thinking about one of those puzzles that has already kept you busy for hours or days. And after awhile you think you may have seen the light, and hurry home to give it another try. Or sneaking out of your bed in the middle of the night to give it one more try again. Believe me, this kind of thing is going to happen to you too!
How about the story? In one word: Great! With Conspiracies, Anima did an outstanding job. The story is thrilling while playing, from the very beginning until the very end. Conspiracies is also one of those games where you hate to have finished the game. Believe me, you'll never get enough of this one!
The graphics are very detailed. And you can look in all directions around you. The sounds and the music are as they should be in a great story like Conspiracies. They are superb, and contribute to the thrilling atmosphere of the game. As soon as you start taking your first steps as Nick, you'll know that this game has that special combination of atmosphere, sounds and music. And that's only the beginning! The same goes for the several actors in the game. They are very well chosen for the job. You can get an idea about the game itself by just taking a look at my walkthrough: I'll bet that you'll want Conspiracies after seeing it and the screenshots. Of course you can also visit Anima's web site (see below) for a demo and for some more screenshots.
Aren't there any points of criticism about Conspiracies? Well to be honest with you, I haven't found any points to criticize. I can only say, 'Great job, Anima! Thanks a lot for the many hours of thrilling game play'. I advise you to hurry down to the store and get your own copy of Conspiracies now! I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did. But I'm almost certain of that...
Okay, my final words are for the people at Anima: Start working on a part two of this game, ASAP!!!
© 1 July 2003 Bert Jamin
Visit Anima's Website to learn more about the story, view additional screenshots and download the demo (trailer).
Developed (2003) by Anima Ppd/Interactive and published in North America by Got Game Entertainment.
Minimum System Requirements:
PC: Pentium II 400 MHz (Celeron 433 MHz) Processor (Pentium III 1 Ghz or Amd 1 Ghz Athlon CPU Recommended); Windows 98 / 2000 / ME / XP; 64 MB RAM (256 MB Recommended); 12X CD-ROM or DVD-ROM Drive; 16 MB DirectX 8.1b Accelerated, FrameRate About 17 - 25 fps, Graphics Card (64 MB DirectX 8.1b Accelerated, FrameRate About 61 - 120 fps Recommended); DirectX 8.1b Compatible Sound Card; 1.5 - 3 GB of Free Hard Drive Space; 30 GB Hard Drive Recommended; Keyboard and Mouse
Where To Buy This Game:
Anima Ppd/Interactive In Europe, Australia and the Rest of the World
OR: see our Places To Buy Games for other sellers around the world
Walkthroughs or Hints: