is the third game in the series
and a prequel to the previous two games. It goes back in time to the early seventies, to one of the ancestors of Rosangela Blackwell from the The Blackwell Legacy
: chain smoker Lauren Blackwell. All members of the family have been visited by Joey, a ghost, who urges them to help him solve cases of lost and disturbed ghosts.
The narrative starts in medias res while Lauren is investigating some cases. She reads the newspaper every morning for the mention of strange occurrences and then heads out with Joey to check if there are ghosts involved. On that particular evening, there have been three false alarms and two more locations to visit. These involve strange music by a saxophone player and an old lady at a construction site.
Using the AGS engine, this adventure game has a classic point-and-click interface with the two mouse buttons for examining or using objects. You can strike up conversations and change the outcome based on your responses. Lauren carries around an inventory and a notebook where she jots down clues. You can combine clues to link events, and then use these new observations in conversations. The inventory is scarcely used. Important items include a dictaphone and a camera.
Gameplay is largely based around the storytelling and dialogues, rather than complicated puzzles. All characters have full voice-acting, there is a complete soundtrack, and a director's cut mode with an audio track where Dave Gilbert interferes regularly while playing to explain the design choices of the game. While playing, Lauren can make four bonus photographs that unlock hidden items such as extra music tracks, concept art and more.
New to this game, players can switch between Joey and Lauren at any time. Joey is immaterial and can pass through walls, as long as he stays near Lauren. During conversations, the character portraits are no longer shown.
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The content of this game was initially a part of Blackwell Convergence
, as a flashback, but cut eventually. When it grew too big and it would take too long to develop, Dave Gilbert
returned to the cut part and decided to expand it and turn it into a full game, prior to the release of Convergence.
Joseph Mitchell as a reporter for The New Yorker was not chosen at random. He was an actual reporter and wrote about unusual people. After the initial articles, he didn't publish anything significant for more than 30 years, but was kept on the payroll and came to the office every day. More info in the related links section.
This entry to the MobyGames database was contributed by Sciere (217829)
on Sep 12, 2007.