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The Pandora Directive

aka: Pandora Akte, Die, Pandora Device, Tex Murphy: The Pandora Directive
Moby ID: 1454
DOS Specs
Buy on Windows
$9.99 new on Steam

Description official descriptions

Welcome to San Francisco of the future - a strange megalopolis with a post-apocalyptic feel, where ordinary humans co-exist with mutants - the result of radioactivity. In this city is also the office of Tex Murphy, a lonely private investigator, kind-hearted, yet bitterly ironic. He is hired to investigate the disappearance of a scientist named Thomas Malloy. A series of murders occurs at that time, and before long Tex finds himself involved in a complex conspiracy of political intrigues and shocking scientific discoveries.

The Pandora Directive is a sequel to Under A Killing Moon, utilizing the same 3D engine, real actors, and gameplay system. The player can physically explore the game world, looking at objects from different angles, zooming in, etc. It is necessary to talk to many people about various topics, and also solve some complex puzzles. The game provides a built-in hint system for the puzzles, but the player does not get any points for solving them if he opts to use it.

The game introduces a new gameplay element: Tex has three kinds of answers at his disposal during some important dialogues. Depending on what kind of approach the player chooses for Tex (especially in conversations with his sweetheart Chelsee), subsequent plot events will be influenced, eventually leading to one of the six different endings.

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Credits (DOS version)

76 People (72 developers, 4 thanks) · View all



Average score: 85% (based on 19 ratings)


Average score: 4.3 out of 5 (based on 64 ratings with 6 reviews)

No matter how bad things are, things can always get worse.

The Good

  • Spanning across six CDs, each with its own different print, two double jewel-cases able to fit 8 CDs, and very intriguing box cover concept adds a big plus to this game. Especially back cover with so much text on it, kinda makes this a unique detective box, if not pandora's, fit to compare with packages of those pre-dawn text-adventures. THE HEAT IS GETTING UP
  • The love knots between Tex and Chelsee finally get tighter and the two of them can sum up to several different outcomes, and the true one that later takes on in the reign of an Overseer. WOMEN TIMES THREE
  • Women in this game are really drop-dead gorgeous if I have a freedom of speech. Not only that, Tex gets the privilege to choose as well. This is sort of starting to look like a typical Bond movie, one woman in danger, screaming for help, another one playing both sides until she shows face behind the veil of darkness, and the one that ends up with out hero. SAME OLD, SAME GOOD
  • You get to see the Tex's office and finally meet the owner of the Ritz hotel (not much of a sight, though), get back on the streets we all got familiar with Under a Killing Moon masterpiece, and meet many new as well as couple of familiar characters. Kinda pity you don't get to see most of the cast you met in UAKM. TEX "DANGEROUS" MURPHY
  • There's lots of action going on in this installment of the series, and none of it to Tex's advantage. But where he goes, the action follows and he seems to MacGyver out of the danger with an extreme luck, but that's our Tex. What's a PI that doesn't count on luck. But seriously, seeing Tex in action is more than fantastic this time, it beats both UAKM and Overseer action scenes. For example Tex running to save that club dancer before the murderer get to her, or Tex holding on to the badgirl in the pillar rising scene. The suspense and direction of action scenes is amazing, and so incredibly re-watchable. END ME AWAY
  • Not being a fan of multiple endings, but this one is as explicit example as Blade Runner is. The entire game changes as you develop your character towards good or dark side, which eventually leads to multiple endings. I've seen all of them and the true one is really the best, not to mention the funniest and most sincere. But others are worthwile reaching to see how cool can Tex be even when watching death in the eyes.

    **The Bad**
  • Comparing to other Tex Murphy games, this one simply has too much quicktime events. There is every now and then that you have very short time to do something but first, you must figure out what is it you need to do. It gets constantly frustrating and it is true help to have a hint system in such occasions. THE STORY
  • The story is kinda least appealing so far, and even thought it all seemed intriguing at the start, it doesn't quite end up to my expectations, the whole revelation thingy. The least interesting one that makes me think if Access wanted to make something that look more like an epic and gain fame on the success of UAKM. Tex should stay on the Boggie role, saving the world in UAKM was okay, but Roswell conspiracies and all this alien hunt wasn't much of a deal, not to mention that one entire CD is spent in a top secret base where Tex is reckoning with a very dangerous Alien, not much of an alien design though. Think it would've been better effect if the base was dead empty.

    **The Bottom Line**
    It's a Tex Murphy game, it has Chris Jones in it, it should be a reason enough to get it. It has a few drawbacks to compare it with Under a Killing Moon and Overseer, but it's filled with great art, superb dramatic scenes, Tex's charm, and a PI rules. Having Tex Murphy games in your collection is a trademark of quality, an underrated top quality.
  • DOS · by MAT (241150) · 2012

    The Tex Murphy series is hands down the best drama on PC

    The Good
    Unlike many other adventure games the plot and script of the game are VERY polished. The Tex series of games if one of the few adventures that focus on storyline rather than graphics or something else. From and adults point of view this could easily be transported to book form (and it was) or TV or even feature film. The story is that strong.

    While this game did not progress much in terms of method or interface the game did improve in many categories.

    1. <u>Longer more in-depth storyline.</u>
    I would have thought after playing Under a Killing Moon that this would not be possible but it is! Pandora just pulls you in and touches more on your heart and emotions than UAKM.

    2.<u>Multiple Paths</u>
    I think that there were 3 different paths that you could take resulting in 12 different endings! You could choose to be the "good" Tex and follow the straight and narrow. You could be the "bad" Tex and be totally self-centered and throw friendships and love to fire. Or you could just choose the middle path. Part bad Tex part good Tex.

    3.<u>Hint Files</u>
    I have said this time and time again. How unselfish and cool of Chris Jones and the foks at Access to not charge me for hints. But not just that, the game also keeps track of where and what I have done. So If I have completed all there is to know about a place or person it reflects that in the hint system. Thus I dont have to waste time looking for the right tip, and can limit my exposure to other info.

    4.<u>Excellent Acting</u>
    As with all Tex games the acting talent is first rate. No doubt about it NO ONE DOES IT BETTER!

    The Bad
    Part of the problem with multiple paths is that sometimes it can be hard to find where you went wrong. For instance if you want the really good ending you have to be careful in your dealings. (but I can handle that) Also the game engine didnt change between UAKM and Pandora. Overall though that really isnt that bad of a thing.

    The Bottom Line
    Please if you are looking for something of substance just give Tex a try. Its hands down the best drama you can find on a PC!

    DOS · by William Shawn McDonie (1131) · 2001

    Three paths + seven endings = one amazing game

    The Good
    In his last adventure, PI Tex Murphy (played by Chris Jones) stopped a cult's plans to release a deadly virus into Earth's atmosphere that would have wiped out mutants. After claiming victory, he decides to focus on dance lessons. One year later, on the night where Tex is a complete jerk to his girlfriend-to-be, Chelsee Bando (Suzanne Barnes), he is hired by Gordon Fitzpatrick (Kevin McCarthy) to find a missing friend by the name of Thomas Malloy, but Fitzpatrick isn't the only person looking for Malloy. Finding him puts Tex in grave danger, and as the game progresses, he will uncover the truth about the greatest government conspiracy.

    The Pandora Directive is the sequel to Under a Killing Moon. Both games use the same engine, but Pandora seems to be a much longer game, consisting of six CD-ROMS instead of four. All of the usual characters from UAKM are in this game, including Chelsee, Rook Garner (Doug Vandegrift), and Louie LaMintz (Randall Edwards). The same Chandler Avenue is there, but new buildings have already been established. You can even walk all the way through the Ritz. You are living in a virtual world.

    That virtual world allows you to do the same things like you did in UAKM like looking under things, on top of things, crawl around, and other actions a true PI does. But Pandora allows you to do more. For instance, you can call people on VidPhones; look up information on a laptop, allowing you to get new leads; and decipher the Mayan calendar. To me, the VidPhones look good and they may be what we'll be using in the near future.

    What sets Pandora apart is the fact that you can play the game and stay on three different paths. Doing so allows you to watch different cut-scenes and take conversations at a different level. The path that you follow through the game depends on the way that you handle conversations with someone, but the three conversation responses should allow you to determine how positive, negative, or just neutral you want Tex to be. It would be hard for people to stay on the positive/negative path that they probably be playing the game on the neutral path. Also, your actions can lead to one of seven endings, some of them are good while some of them are bad. I used a strategy guide to make sure that I played the game several times on separate paths and made sure that I watched all seven endings. Because of the different paths and endings, the game can be played over and over again, in the hope that you would be able to view different footage.

    There are two game modes that you can play the game in. In the “Entertainment” level, you can solve puzzles instantly, which is useful if you don't feel like solving puzzles that can take you at least ten minutes to solve while going nowhere. Not so in the ”Game Player” level, where you cannot cheat your way out of the puzzles. As a bonus, you are treated to more points, hidden locations, and possibly hidden cut-scenes. You have to solve puzzles almost every day, and some of them can be quite hard, as you are expected to put a photo or message together. Even though I found some quite easy to solve, I still had to use a guide to help me with the later puzzles.

    Upon completing Pandora, I enjoyed listening to Tex's Lament while I watched the end credits go by. This song can also be heard several times if you happen to be traveling down the negative path.

    The Bad
    Access has done a good job at not turning people into mannequins when they are listening to someone, but not so with the VidPhone conversations. When they finish being a mannequin, they often tend to be choppy. Choppy as meaning going from one position to the other quickly without some essential body movements.

    In UAKM, users had the ability to assign and use multiple CD-ROM drives through the game's installation program, so that they wouldn't have to change discs every day in the game. I did not see such an option that allows you to do this.

    The Bottom Line
    The Pandora Directive features the same virtual world as Under a Killing Moon. You can do all the things in both games, but Pandora has you doing a little bit more. It is a much longer game, more than the double amount of days that UAKM has, and some of the days are quite long.

    The game is replayable due to the different paths and endings, but which path you are heading down on depends on how you handle conversations with most of the major characters. If you already completed Pandora using the neutral path, for example, you might want to play it again, this time trying to be on either the positive or negative path.

    There are two modes in which to play the game in, making it appeal to either die-hard adventure fan who absolutely loves puzzles, or those that can't cope with challenges.

    As mentioned in my UAKM review, Aaron Conners decided to produce a novel based on Pandora, but it isn't much good compared to the UAKM novel. It doesn't take a different twist and mostly all of the dialogue can also be found in the game. But it is a good read and you can get it, along with the UAKM novel, at Amazon.

    DOS · by Katakis | カタキス (43086) · 2007

    [ View all 6 player reviews ]


    Subject By Date
    Entertainment or game players mode? Zovni (10504) Feb 26, 2011



    A novelization of the game (as with a later adaptation of the earlier game Under A Killing Moon) was published through the Proteus imprint of Prima Publishing. They were written by Aaron Conners; the TPD novel was first published in August of 1995.


    • Computer Gaming World
      • May 1997 (Issue #154) – Adventure Game of the Year


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    Related Sites +

    • Pandora Directive Hints
      Great question and answer type hints to help you solve the game at your own pace.
    • Unofficial Tex Murphy Site
      Unofficial Tex Murphy: A newly refurbished Tex Site with a message board, a news section, help on all the games, a Fan Fiction/Art section and many more feature.

    Identifiers +

    • MobyGames ID: 1454
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    Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history! If your contribution is approved, you will earn points and be credited as a contributor.

    Contributors to this Entry

    Game added by MAT.

    Windows added by Picard. Linux, Macintosh added by Sciere.

    Additional contributors: William Shawn McDonie, Robin Lionheart, Unicorn Lynx, Jeanne, Pseudo_Intellectual, Patrick Bregger.

    Game added May 22, 2000. Last modified April 22, 2024.