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9: The Last Resort (Windows)

69
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.1
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Bullyt (524)
Written on  :  Aug 17, 2010
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  2.17 Stars2.17 Stars2.17 Stars2.17 Stars2.17 Stars

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Summary

Myst-clone not delivered by the presentation alone.

The Good

The presentation is top-notch throughout the game, with characters voiced by the likes of James Belushi and Christopher Reeve, with Cher as a seer offering the services of saving and loading. The mouse-driven interface is smooth and intuitive, and the surreal, slightly horror-influenced graphics give the Last Resort the feel of an amusement park gone bad. The game has its own distinct character, and is occasionally able to draw the player firmly into the story.

The Bad

Unfortunately, the story practically ends at the entrance to the resort. When the dust eventually settles there are only puzzles left to solve with minor interaction with the few characters present. The puzzles come in three varieties: simple and irritating (e.g. memory game with sounds), arcade-flavoured (e.g. shooting rats with the mouse), and amazingly complicated coded sequences with no hints to speak of, particularly the end game puzzle(s) involving playing the organ. The back of the game box states that the player needs "divine inspiration to complete" and that is a fact: without a walkthrough I could never have managed the feat.

The Bottom Line

9: The Last Resort is a true curiosity from the middle of the 1990s, especially due to the people listed in the credits. Professional in technical aspects it falls flat with its puzzle design, the one component a Myst-clone has to get right.