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Platform

PC

 

Genre

Adventure

 

Publisher

City Interactive

 

Developer

City Interactive

 

ESRB

E +10 (Everyone)

 

Released

November 2008

 

 

- Itís an adventure game!

- Gorgeous graphics

- A female archaeologist that doesnít use a stereotype to intrigue players

 

 

- Game ends abruptly

- Cutscenes show a lack of polish, or was that Polish?

- Protagonist wears long pants (see Pro comment number 3)

 

 

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Chronicles of Mystery: The Scorpio Ritual

Score: 7.0 / 10

 

It seems like the true adventure genre had taken a bit of a hiatus. It could just be me, but either way Iím happy to report that it seems like there are more of these games coming out and for those that enjoy a slower paced game, youíre in luck.

 

scorpio ritual          scorpio ritual

 

Chronicles of Mystery: The Scorpio Ritual has you playing the part of Sylvie Leroux as she looks to unfold the mystery that unravels in front of her. As Sylvie, you receive an urgent phone call from your Uncle who just happens to be an archaeologist. He informs you that heís made an incredible discovery but when you arrive back at your childhood home, you find that he has vanished and so have some other items.

 

Youíll be thrown into a world of puzzles very early on in the game, which all seem quite inventive. I never felt frustrated with the puzzles and the hints were spot on

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without giving things away. Itís not to say there arenít some strange solutions, but any seasoned adventuring type will be pleased that most of these are fairly tame and land less on the side of plain bizarre.

 

The voice over work is good as Sylvie remarks about each and every object you click on. Useful objects automatically get added to your inventory, and just as slick they

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disappear when they are no longer useful. Like many adventures games of this type, youíll sometimes have to combine objects to make something more useful to accomplish a given task.

 

The graphics in this game are gorgeous Ė if you donít count the cut scenes. Itís never really bothered me when voiceovers donít match the lips in a cut scene. Polish developer City Interactive clearly made the game for the European market first. However, the quality of the video in these scenes is strangely off which strictly seems to be a technical issue. Certainly on a DVD-ROM there is a lot of room to put quality video in, so on this point there is no excuse.

 

The game does do a fair bit of back tracking, which of course weíve come to expect from this type of game. I have to wonder though, is that really necessary anymore? I can understand for a download title or something that was cartridge based where space is at a premium. When it comes shipped on optical media however, you have to wonder if the reuse of assets is more about saving money than it is space and that means in some ways we havenít advanced in this area of game development at all in the past twenty years. I digress.

 

scorpio ritual          scorpio ritual

 

Overall, I had a good time with this game. Itís value priced which hopefully means it might find its way into more gamers hands and that might mean a sequel is in the works.

 

I didnít really care for the way the game ended. Without spoiling anything, letís just say that youíll want to have that sequel come out next week. Which we all know doesnít happen with video games, but on the upside I suppose itís a good thing that I wanted more.

 

Chronicles of Mystery: The Scorpio Ritual is a decent title that is just a little shy of greatness. It once again proves compelling story combined with decent gameplay is always a formula for success. Thatís one puzzle I wish all game developers could solve.

 

- Syd Bolton

(March 12, 2009)

 

Syd Bolton surrounds himself in classic games at the Personal Computer Museum (www.pcmuseum.ca) in Brantford, Ontario, Canada.

 

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