User review spotlight: Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar (DOS)

Continue?9876543210

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Description

Continue?9876543210 is a game about death told through a dead video game character in an abstract world. The character failed and died, and he now resides in the Random Access Memory, pondering memories and existence in the final moments before being expunged irreversibly.

A gameplay session consists of six areas that need to be completed. The character is randomized for each session and so is the selection and order of areas, from a pool of eleven environments and six characters in total. Each area has its own theme and can be explored in any direction. There is a pressure to complete it as a garbage collection program that sweeps the RAM will soon delete it. There are two types of areas. In the first one, the rubble blocking one of multiple exit doors need to be cleared. The second type has a countdown timer for two minutes and four fragments need to be collected by chasing characters and talking to them to open the exit door.

The first type lasts three minutes and has more varied gameplay. The character can move around and attack with a sword. Some parts also have a jump function. There are various characters to talk to. They babble, offer clues for a conversation that may need to be completed later on, or attempt to sell the character something. The game's currency is foo, earned by defeating monsters. It can be exchanged with characters to open doors in the environment. Entering a door, when it is not a trap, brings the character to a room where a choice between lightning and prayer is offered. Lightning randomly clears rubble blocking exit doors. Every 45 seconds, the garbage collection program appears, sucking the player into a challenge. Each challenge has a very different style, from a Spacer Invaders clone to a dungeon crawler or a side-scrolling fighting game. Completing it successfully is rewarded with foo or keys that open new doors in the area. After four appearances the game is over, so the exit doors need to be cleared with lightning before it hits.

When prayer is chosen instead of lightning, a shelter is added to a separate town area. After two main areas, the character needs to survive a storm in a separate town. Lightning hits a number of shelters and a sufficient amount of shelters need to be present in order to survive and to move on. To complete a game session a total of three storms need to be weathered. The game also offers various meditative moments. There are also additional game elements such as car parts used to survive failed challenges, healing and optional quests. When failing challenges or rounds, it almost always affects the number of shelters. Instead of lightning and prayer, sometimes a sentence need to be completed choosing from multiple options, based on conversations with the characters.

Screenshots

Continue?9876543210 Windows A challenge entirely in red
Continue?9876543210 Windows A room with priests?
Continue?9876543210 Windows Inside a room, choosing between lightning and prayer.
Continue?9876543210 Windows The first run of the garbage collection program is here.

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The Press Says

Shoost Linux Jan 20, 2014 7.8 out of 10 78
Shoost Macintosh Jan 20, 2014 7.8 out of 10 78
Shoost iPad Jan 20, 2014 7.8 out of 10 78
Shoost iPhone Jan 20, 2014 7.8 out of 10 78
Shoost Windows Jan 20, 2014 7.8 out of 10 78
4Players.de Windows Jan 08, 2014 45 out of 100 45

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Contributed to by Sciere (268936)