Gray Matter

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Xbox 360
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More than ten years after the release of her last full-scale adventure game (GK3: Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned, 1999), Jane Jensen returns to the scene after a decade of casual games under her belt, this time with Gray Matter, a science fiction, horror thriller in the form of a classic third person, point and click, 2D/3D adventure game.

The player assumes the role of two different characters. One is itinerant street magician and student Samantha Everett, who hails from America and is currently in the United Kingdom. The second is her somewhat reluctant employer Dr. David Styles, a recently widowed Oxford neurobiology researcher who conducts experiments relating to the power and potential of the human mind. Sam will have to utilize her special skills involving slight of hand in order to help the reclusive David. Among other things, he needs help recruiting several students from the nearby Oxford campus to participate in the experiments, not an easy task considering the notoriety of Dr. Styles and his home estate of Dread Hill House. While there Sam is also on the lookout for a clandestine magician's club into which she wishes to gain admittance.

Graphics are a combination of 2D and 3D, with the backgrounds being pre-rendered 2D and characters are 3D. In addition to run-of-the-mill inventory puzzles, the two playable characters' areas of expertise (Sam's magic tricks and David's scientific research) are fully integrated into the gameplay and interface of Gray Matter, enabling the player to solve the various puzzles and get over obstacles scattered throughout. A game progression system is implemented, allowing gamers to keep track of the events and tasks of each of the eight chapters.


Gray Matter Windows The magician's menu: preparing for a trick
Gray Matter Windows Sam inside the Dread Hill House
Gray Matter Windows Some places you visit are based on real locations: here we are at St. Edmund Hall in Oxford
Gray Matter Windows Dr. Styles in front of the mirror in his room

Alternate Titles

  • "Grey Matter: Призраки Подсознания" -- Russian spelling
  • "Gray Matter: Dread Hill House" -- Working title

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User Reviews

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Critic Reviews

Adventures United Windows Nov 20, 2010 91 out of 100 91 Windows Dec 09, 2010 17 out of 20 85 Windows Nov 12, 2010 81 out of 100 81
PC Games (Germany) Windows Jan 14, 2011 81 out of 100 81
GamingXP Windows Nov 11, 2010 80 out of 100 80
Krawall Gaming Network Windows Nov 17, 2010 80 out of 100 80
Looki Windows Nov 25, 2010 80 out of 100 80
Absolute Games ( Windows Dec 19, 2010 74 out of 100 74
AusGamers Windows Feb 08, 2011 7 out of 10 70
Brash Games Windows Feb 18, 2011 6 out of 10 60


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Further reading

In her introduction found in the game manual, designer Jane Jensen recommends the following works for further exploring Gray Matter's subject matter:
  • The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat (Oliver Sacks)
  • Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind (V.S. Ramachandran and Sandra Blakeslee)
  • The Conscious Universe: The Scientific Truth of Psychic Phenomena (Dean Radin)

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Contributed to by Tal Cohen (35)