Mr. Bill's   Adventureland   ReviewHOME

Original 1996 Version

Reviewed by  Mr. Bill & Lela

Jack Orlando, Private Investigator It is 1933, at the end of Prohibition, and you are Jack Thomas Orlando, a washed up Private Detective without any self-respect left. You used to be somebody in this town (a large city somewhere on the coast in the USA). You spent the years of Prohibition building a reputation as an excellent crime fighter, foe to the whisky smugglers, and general all-around good Joe. They even gave you the Keys to the City!

But the stress eventually got to you, and for far too long now you have spent all of your time in dives and bars, drinking and smoking way too much. Your wife has long since left you, you're flat broke and you don't even keep yourself clean any longer. No one respects you anymore (Hell, you don't even respect yourself!), and they let you know it. But you can't seem to snap out of it. All you have left now are your memories of the good times, and the bottle.

Then one night, staggering half drunk out of the Night O'Granis Bar, you notice something going on in the adjacent alley. You hear a gunshot. With leftover instincts from former days, you run to help. But an unseen assailant knocks you unconscious, and by the time you come to, the police have arrived and you are arrested for the murder of the poor bloke who is lying dead next to you. But you've known the police Inspector for many years. He still remembers when you were a decent citizen, and good at your job. So for old time's sake, he gives you 48 hours. You have 48 hours to either find the killer or be taken into custody yourself... and charged with murder.

If you enjoy mysteries, this one's a classic: hard to find but worth getting if you see it. Done like the old Mickey Spillane series, complete with trenchcoat and fedora, it includes all of the typical language, situations and shady night-life characters that you would expect to find in that genre and era. The puzzles are characteristic of the story, and the great mood music is by Harold Faltermeyer (he composed the music for the movies 'Beverly Hills Cop' and 'Top Gun'). It's a 3rd person game with simple point-and-click interface.

However we did have a couple of problems with the game. No matter how much we fiddled with the controls, we were never able to adjust the volume of the voices, which made hearing the dialogue difficult at times, and for no known reason the sound froze up several times, and we had to restart. Other than that, we only ran into a snag once when we couldn't find a particular crank for a truck. But that was an error in the walkthrough, not the game, and we have since added that information to the available walkthrough listed below this review.

We wanted to get this game a long time ago, but were told by Topware, the German developer, that the game had never been released in English, despite their original plans. Then we noticed that a friend of ours in Hungary had posted on a message board that he had played the game, and he said that it was in English. How come Topware doesn't know that they released it in English? Anyway, we wrote to our friend and had him find us a copy. And yes, the entire game, including the installation instructions and the Read Me file on the CD, are all in English. But the manual and the back of the box are in Hungarian. Go figure!

A new upgraded and expanded version of this game is available called Jack Orlando Director's Cut, which will play on the newer operating systems without the sound problems, etc, that you may experience on today's computers with this original version.

Full View Screenshot

Developed (1996) by Topware Interactive.

Minimum System Requirements:  DOS   Windows

Where To Buy This Game:

Walkthroughs or Hints:

"Walkthrough" available here!

Mr. Bill's   Adventureland
Copyright  February 2000
All Rights Reserved