Future Wars: Adventures in Time (DOS)

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Written by  :  EboMike (3005)
Written on  :  May 31, 2002
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars
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Impressive debut for the Cinematique system

The Good

Future Wars is definitely a fine game. The story is gripping, the visuals are impressive. Jean Baudlot really outdid himself with his atmospheric background tracks, his music for the following Operation Stealth were no match to this.

It's just fun to play - the story slowly unfolds itself, and although it is not considerably sophisticated, it's still interesting enough to keep you going. And the ending sequence is just brilliant.

The Bad

Being the first generation of the Cinematique engine, the GUI was somewhat awkward at some points. The worst thing about the game however are certainly the two big no-no's of adventure games that have been generously planted all over the game:

For one thing, there are several locations that require pixel-hunting, i.e. you have to find objects on the screen which have a hotspot that is only 2 by 2 pixels large. What's even worse is the fact that there are many dead-end traps in the game: So if you fail to find one of those tiny objects (of which you don't even know that you'll need to find them), you'll be stuck much, much later in the game and have to go back.

The Bottom Line

Back in that time, Sierra and LucasArts dominated the adventure scene. The French Delphine Software team successfully got their foot in the door with this game, then followed up with equally wonderful games (Operation Stealth, Cruise for a corpse).

It's a refreshing mix between Sierra and LucasArts - it has an easy-to-use, mouse-driven interface, even less complicated than LucasArts at that time (but still not as simplified as today's adventure games); it however had the openness of the Sierra games - there was no overprotective Mommy that prevented you from dying when you did something wrong.

Plus, technically it excelled both Sierra and LucasArts at that time - sound and graphics were excellent, and the programming was very good - the Cinematique engine allowed for much better special effects.

So - get it and play it. If possible, take a walk-through and verify your position once in a while to see if you've forgot to pack an important item. And - as with most of the games in that time - I recommend going for the Amiga version.