Written by  :  Mirrorshades2k (282)
Written on  :  Nov 14, 2006
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.25 Stars4.25 Stars4.25 Stars4.25 Stars4.25 Stars

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Not a bad little game.

The Good

This is a quick little jaunt through yet another section of the Great Underground Empire -- any Zork fans will immediately recognize the setting. If you have done any sort of interactive fiction games before, you will have no trouble moving around the map and manipulating items.

The story is amusing and is very much true to the spirit of the original Zork games. It is very short, if it takes you much longer than an hour or so then you are doing something very wrong (with one notable exception, which I will discuss in the next section).

Puzzles are well done for the most part, and you can even play through to a couple alternate endings. This impressed me, especially given the overall brevity of the game.

The Bad

There is one "puzzle" (yes, that's deliberately in quotes) that I believe to be unnecessarily unfair and annoying, particularly to players who have spent any time playing other Zork games. I won't give away any details in this review, but suffice to say that it deals with a light source and it is an EXTREME departure from the way that previous Zork games dealt with the light source. I had to look it up in a walkthrough, and then spent some time swearing at the game when I read the "solution".

Once you figure it out, it turns into a perpetual annoyance that will bug you until you finish the game.

(I will submit the solution separately in the Tips/Tricks section for those who are either curious or frustrated.)

The Bottom Line

This game was made freeware by Activision in order to promote the release of Zork: Grand Inquisitor (along with the original Zork I, II, and III). You will need a Z-Code interpreter to play it; the download of the game comes with one, or you can use your own. Overall, even though it's very short, it should be considered a "Should-Play" game for any fans of the Zork series.