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Azrael's Tear

aka: Azrael's Tear: A la Recherche du Graal, Azrael's Tear: Auf der Suche nach dem Heiligen Gral, Azrael's Tear: Search for the Holy Grail
Moby ID: 1852
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Description official description

In Azrael's Tear you play a "raptor", a futuristic thief that raids ancient archaeological sites that have as yet been untouched by man for hundreds of years and are full of treasures.

Recently, due to geological disturbances, the supposed home of the Holy Grail is partially unearthed in northern Scotland. You go in to raid it of its treasures and, provided it exists, of the Holy Grail. When you enter, the entrance caves in behind you and you are stuck inside. Ah well, nothing to do but continue on to find what you came for...

The game utilizes a true 3D engine to display your surroundings, as in Quake. It's heavy on puzzles and light on combat. As you move further on into the ruins you'll encounter ghosts of the inhabitants and hints as to what happened to cause the ruins that surround you now.

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55 People (50 developers, 5 thanks) · View all

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Critics

Average score: 74% (based on 17 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.8 out of 5 (based on 18 ratings with 1 reviews)

While on the surface it looks badly done, this game has a lot going for it

The Good
The voice acting and writing for this game are really excellent. I looked at the voice acting credits, and three men do nine male voices--so each man is doing 3 voices. I tried to figure out who was doing which voice and gave up--it's very hard to tell. I remember mentioning this to someone else who played the game and she was surprised--she thought each voice was being done by a different individual. The dialog writing is very well done, short and to the point, but it also give you a feel for each character. It's amazing how well the differences in personality can come though in so little dialogue. This game also does very well in creating an atmosphere, in creating a sense of terror and bizarreness. It was an unusual environment, mostly due to the effects of grailstone (which is what you're essentially after, since that's what the grail is after). The puzzles weren't too hard. Another thing that was interesting was the four different ways you could get out of the underground city. Each one told you a little bit more about certain characters, especially if you failed to make it out in one instance! Cutscenes are seamlessly blended into the storyline, and this is probably the only time that I have found in-game cutscenes to be so well executed. You don't have to complete every puzzle to win the game, but extra information can be had if you do.

The Bad
It takes a while to really get into the game itself. I think many people gave up on it because they didn't know where the game was going, and it didn't seem that interesting in the first level or part of the game. It lags in the first part, and you meet very few characters as well--and it's the characters that give this game its depth in storyline. The graphics are what I know turned many people off to this game. They're poorly done. The texture maps look gritty, but since this is a deteriorating city, I thought they were appropriate--except that they only looked good from far away. Close-up you were in pixel hell. The characters all look very puppetlike. More forgiving players would point out that it fits with the game (if you think of the effects grailstone has on people and objects), but their animation is not really that good, and they move very stiffly. The endgame cutscene is jarring, and doesn't match the seamlessness of the in-game cutscenes--mainly because it goes to a third-person view, where the whole game was done in a first-person view. The first person view was hard to deal with sometimes, and I frequently found myself falling off edges of walls to my death because I couldn't tell where the edge was to begin with. There are only five save game slots, which for me wasn't enough.

The Bottom Line
This is a Knights Templar story, but one of the most unusual Knights Templar stories I've ever come across. It is very imaginative and well-written. The voice acting is top-notch. If you can stick with this game, it will be worth it. The character interaction is the best, and that's when things get interesting. Try everything. Prepare to die a lot, though. You won't actually be needing that gun you have very much. Talk to everyone as much as you can, and try to ask them every question you can. This is a very atmospheric game, but it takes a while to get sucked into the atmosphere of it--patience is the key.

DOS · by OceansDaughter (106) · 2002

Discussion

Subject By Date
To work smoothly in XP (not too slow or fast) Fred Levit Jul 28, 2013

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  • MobyGames ID: 1852
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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by wossname.

Additional contributors: Jeanne, formercontrib.

Game added June 30, 2000. Last modified September 22, 2023.