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DescriptionThe Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery is a direct sequel to Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers, the first in the supernatural mystery adventure series telling the story of a bookstore owner and writer Gabriel Knight, the last offspring of generations of Schattenjaegers (shadow hunters), whose task is to fight the evil forces that abound in the world.
After leaving New Orleans, Gabriel moves to the Ritter Castle in Bavaria, Germany, his family heritage. One day, a group of peasants approach the castle, and the elder tells Gabriel about a terrible death of a little girl, who was killed by a vicious wolf. Suspecting the wolf could be a supernatural creature, the peasant asks the Schattenjaeger to purge the evil. The investigation brings Gabriel and his assistant Grace Nakimura to the mysterious Hunter Society and to Bavaria's dark past.
The game utilizes a cast of live actors and full-motion video technology: the actors are filmed over photorealistic images of Munich and its surroundings, and nearly every interaction with the environment leads to a FMV sequence. Despite its visual style, The Beast Within is not an interactive movie, but a full-fledged adventure game with many dialogues, detective work to do, and puzzles to solve. Unlike the first game, it is entirely controlled through point-and-click actions - all the icons have been replaced by a single cursor. Both Gabriel and Grace are available as playable characters during different chapters of the story.
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DevelopmentThe Beast Within was originally intended to take place over the course of nine chapters instead of six. The additional three would have had the player shift into the past in order to play as King Ludwig II. These chapters were ultimately cut from the game due to time constraints, budgetary limitations, and the fact that this would have required even more CDs for a game that already requires six discs.
The game's backgrounds were created from photographs taken on location in Germany.
German languageMost Germans in The Beast Within are played by American actors. They thus speak German with a bemusing English accent. In the completely localized German version of the game, quite a few "German" characters have a notable American accent, which is even stranger. Additionally, because Gabriel and Grace speak German in the localized version, the translators had a problem in dealing with scenes in which one of the protagonists speaks to a German and doesn't understand him. The problem was solved somewhat half-heartedly by suggesting that Gabriel and company speak High German, whereas the locals speak in a Bavarian dialect.
German versionWhen the game was first released in Germany it was the un-dubbed and un-subtitled version which had a few scenes censored (for example, a character sitting in his cave and eating flesh from a human bone). The screen would go black and instead of being able to see what was happening the player would instead see a short message on the screen in German simply describing the scene. When the game was later released in its localized German these scenes were uncensored.
ActorsKay Kuter (Werner Huber) seems to enjoy playing the role of a bartender; he also plays one (Griswold Goodsoup) in The Curse of Monkey Island.
NovelJane Jensen, the series' designer, has written a novelization of this game as well as one of the first game (Sins of the Fathers).
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Eurythmic (2612) added The Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery (Windows) on May 15, 1999
Game Designed and Written by::
Karen Oleson (Hildegunde), Norman Smith (Baron), David Bukey (Hildegunde's Father), Jacinta Koreski (Hildegunde's Mother), Gino Lucchetti (Lead Village), Brian Box (Blacksmith), Steve Kennedy (Villager), Erin Rogness (Villager)