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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Barrow Hill (2006)

When it comes to games, I enjoy the creepy ones that focus on the mood, and feeling of tension, mystery, and approaching dread.  Combine that with a decent storyline, and I tend to really enjoy them.

You've stopped into Barrow Hill, near Cornwall, England and find unrest amongst the community due to something that an archeological dig has discovered.  Soon, the community seems to have disappeared, and you're forced to investigate and confront a ancient force that threatens to destroy you and the town completely...

Shadow Tor Studios brings us a good game in "Barrow Hill".  The graphics are great in the mood and atmosphere created.  While playing this in a darkened room, and going from game area to game area, I felt utterly alone and isolated in the environment on the screen.  The sound just added to this sense of being by yourself and evading some shadowy shape in the corners of the room.  While many point and click adventures use 2-D paintings, this game uses 3D renderings, giving the game world more depth and width.  I was quite impressed with the look, sound, and emotional feel of the game.

The story is relatively simple, but is still a good jumping off point for the game.  The story gets depth from the little things you find and read along the way.  The puzzles involved don't seem to be simply placed in the game to give you a challenge, they fit in fairly well with the story and help to progress it.  They simple enough that you won't get frustrated trying to solve them- but will keep you busy for a minute or two at least.  While the game is non-linear, the story still manages to flow smoothly to the climax.

Other than one other person you meet, you're the only character in the game.  You don't get much character development- which isn't really a negative if you're actually pretending that the game is happening to you as yourself.

While, it's a good game, it's not one that I would play more than once in a row.  I might play it- then maybe play it again a year or two later.  Because of that, I'm going to place, "Barrow Hill" in "The Bad".

2 comments:

  1. How much time does one invest in a Bad game? Just curious.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This game can be completed in about four hours. It's good enough to play through once, but not good enough to play through twice.

    "Twitch and Shoot" players wouldn't find this game interesting at all.

    ReplyDelete