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The 7th Guest

aka: 7th Guest for Windows 95, The, Guest, T7G
Moby ID: 283
DOS Specs

Description official descriptions

The 7th Guest is a puzzle-adventure game which takes place inside an abandoned mansion. Venture into the 22 rooms of the spooky mansion, solve over 20 mind-bending puzzles to unravel a tale of revenge and horror that took place in the 1930s.

The owner of the mansion was Henry Stauf, a famous maker of children's toys. Once a homeless drifter and thief, influenced by a vision in a dream, Henry invented a wondrous doll, so incredibly life-like that it sold like wildfire. Stauf's toys became popular overnight bringing fame and fortune and changing his rags to riches. But things took a tragic turn when owners of the doll became infected with a fierce and deadly virus. None of those children recovered.

After this turn of events Stauf secluded himself inside his estate, stopped making his toys and never came into contact with the outside world for a long time. Something very strange happened when six people receive an invitation to a party at the mansion. By solving the riddles inside Stauf's "fun house", you'll delve into the past to learn what happened to them, and the mysterious 7th guest, on that fateful night.

The game is played in first person perspective with a point-and-click interface featuring horror-themed animated cursors (skeletons, bulging-eye skulls etc.). It is one of the first games to be released on the then-new CD-Rom media. The graphics are fully rendered in SVGA, and real actors and actresses bring the story to life during numerous full-motion video cut scenes. The visuals are accompanied by an original, orchestrated musical score.

To finish the game, you must solve the puzzles in Stauf's manor; each solved puzzle will unlock new rooms or new movie sequences to watch. The puzzles are quite varied; there's the classic "eight queens puzzle", another puzzle where you need to compose a sentence by rearranging letters, and others. If you get stuck, you can visit the library; a book within will give you hints on the puzzle. If the hints aren't enough, the puzzle will solve itself automatically once you consult the book enough times.

Some later, limited releases of the game came with a separate video that included a "behind the scenes" look at the making of the game and interviews with the developers.

Spellings

  • האורח השביעי - Hebrew spelling

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Credits (DOS version)

132 People (121 developers, 11 thanks) · View all

Game Concept and Design
Script Written by
Produced by (Trilobyte)
Executive in Charge of Production
Produced by (Virgin)
Music Composed and Produced by
Lead Programmer (Trilobyte)
Assistant Programmer
Tools Programmer
Lead Artist
Art Director
3D Modelers
QA Manager (Virgin)
Quality Assurance Team
[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 71% (based on 42 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.6 out of 5 (based on 154 ratings with 10 reviews)

Creepingly eerie... and worth a look...

The Good
7th Guest is a fantastic visual game. Back when games were on floppies, here this one comes on a CD! The technological leap ot CD based games had arrived. For better or worse, now we are stuck with them.

The graphics for its time are astounding. A fully rendered 3D house with intricate puzzles and ghost like actors. It amazes me just walking around in the game how fluid the graphics were... and this was 7 years ago.

The gameplay... hmmm... How to sum it up. It was unique. If you are into puzzles... especially in the mathematical puzzle-type books, you could probably find all the solutions at your local library (or in my case, I had solved them originally on paper - check the telescope puzzle for an example). Some original puzzles were good, including the Coin/Card flipping puzzles.

Sound was eerie. Period. The "Come Baaaaack!" When you leave the game sends chills down my spine every time I hear it. And the background music is creepy in a childish way - which fits right into the game itself :)



The Bad
Some of the puzzles - as mentioned in other reviews - are too darn hard. The telescope game is one I NEVER solved. If you like Othello/Ataxx, then you got this one solved, but the AI in that game alone ruined the "move around the house and solve puzzles" mood for me.

The control - as in walking around the house - could be very difficult at times. It only took a single click of the mouse to go from Point A to Point B, and if you didn't want to go there, well tough... you went anyway. It could get very frustrating trying to move around the house.

The actors could have been better, and the plot was decent, but seemed very vague and fractured. Maybe because of the puzzles you chose to solve and the order that they are solved in?

The Bottom Line
Depends on your taste. This is pure puzzle solving extravaganza with a decent plot woven in. Like puzzles? This ground-breaking game is for you. Dislike puzzles? Try a different game.

DOS · by Chris Martin (1155) · 2001

Are you serious?

The Good
At the time, this game was known for having great graphics and sound. I guess that should count for something. Oh, and at times it's also extremely challenging.

The Bad
Well, basically this game represents almost everything that was bad with the early cd-rom era. A lot of flash but no fun. The intro movie had real actors, but man was it boring. The game itself had a story, also played out by actors, but the story is far from compelling, and the actors suck. Furthermore the quality of the videos isn't very good. But worst of all, this isn't fun to play. Just walk around in a pre-rendered (but ugly) house and solve tedious puzzles. When you solve a puzzle you are rewarded with one of those terrible video sequences and off you go to the next boring puzzle. This is just as bad as Myst, and at the time, almost as popular. I'm the first to admit it, I just don't get it. This is supposed to be a horror game. The only horrific thing about it is the boredom it generates. And, of course, the awful and extremely ugly design. Those mid 90's cd-rom graphics, how I do hate them.

The Bottom Line
A very not at all scary horror game. And not fun to play either. Very popular, and a classic, though, for some strange reason. It's a strange world.

DOS · by Joakim Kihlman (231) · 2006

One of the most memorable experiences of my life.

The Good
Aah, The 7th Guest :-) I bought it a few months after we bought a single speed CD-ROM-equipped 386 in 1993. The game cost a fortune (330 shekels - today's equivallent of about $80), and - since I bought it in the middle of a school day - brought a huge amount of attention to the little package.

The game simply blew me away - smooth (not 100% on my single-speed though), beautiful animations, actual video (which was, for the time, a technological breakthrough) and very difficult gameplay. The music was so dramatic and enveloping I still listen to the CD soundtrack to this day.

The Bad
Some of the puzzles are just damn difficult, most mention-worthy is the microscope puzzle in the basement which is just DIFFICULT. I did finish the game eventually, and I still find it an awesome experience at 1am with the lights out and volume cranked up...

Also, I have to agree with Jim - the actors are rather terrible.

The Bottom Line
A wonderful experience you will never forget.

DOS · by Tomer Gabel (4535) · 1999

[ View all 10 player reviews ]

Discussion

Subject By Date
Genre Cantillon (80616) Jun 12, 2020
Henry Stauf is back... Daniel Saner (3509) Dec 4, 2011
A site to follow to get this game running on Vista Alaka (107113) May 30, 2009
Error Unknown Asset Type - when playing the game Gerri James Nov 18, 2007
HELP!!! Lindsey Johnson Sep 19, 2007

Trivia

1001 Video Games

The 7th Guest appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Budget

The overall budget for this game was more than one million dollars (a lot for a game on that times) and it was the first game on the history that comes with 2 CD-ROMs. Also one of the first ones on CD-ROM format at all.

CD-ROM

Limited versions of The 7th Guest were bundled with a 13 minute video titled "The Making Of The Seventh Guest", which included interviews with the founders of Trilobyte and supporting developers/writers/directors. The 7th Guest was so ahead of its time that, during the closing credits, one of the sound designers predicts that "in months, we will see an explosion of CDROM technology that may change the way games are distributed--all games will come this way." How right he was (although it took about two years, not a couple of months).

Endings

The 7th Guest has 2 different endings. The ending you see depends on if you cheat your way through the game (using the book in the library to solve the puzzles).

Engine

The 7th Guest was pioneering in its day; it had SVGA/VESA motion video and a fully-rendered game world that you could navigate through (with some limitations). It side-stepped technological limitations of the day by allowing all of this to take place on a single-speed CDROM drive and a 386.

All rendered rooms in The 7th Guest were built and rendered with 3D Studio for DOS.

Limited Edition

The limited edition version of the game came in a book-style box with a lovely poem inside.

Localization

Playing the game on my German CD-i system surprisingly revealed that the whole game has been localized in Speech and Text for the German market and the CD-i game system.

Matthew Costello

Matthew Costello was already an established horror writer in 1992, which is why the team turned to him to write the story and dialog.

Microscope Puzzle

The Microscope puzzle in the game is actually a game of Spot (as in the former 7-up mascot) for the NES set to the highest difficulty level. Spot for the NES was one of the previous games created by the group that made The 7th Guest.

Music

The second disk contains about half an hour worth of music, both from the game and two or three original songs.

Nintendo

Nintendo paid Virgin a million dollars up front for the rights to this game to help showcase their Super Nintendo CD-ROM system. What Super Nintendo CD-ROM system you ask? Exactly. Sometimes it sucks to be Nintendo.

Digging a bit deeper, rumour has it they knew at the time it would never be served up on one of their systems but just wanted to squat the property to spoil the chances of its ever turning up as a Sega console exclusive. Sure, it looks like a spiteful waste of money on the surface, but which company is still active as a hardware vendor? Sometimes it sucks to be Sega.

Novel

The screenwriter of the game, Matthew Costello, has also written a novel to go with the game, which was released by Prima (ISBN 0761500863). The book, which works out the game's story in more detail, can still be found in some online stores.

Patch

Trilobyte released a patch to run the game in Windows 9X/NT systems - however, the company's website vanished years ago, and the file is very difficult to find.

However, you can find the file at ComputerHope.com! http://www.computerhope.com/download/games.htm

References

The Zaphod Beeblebrox cheat code that is mentioned in the Tips & Tricks section refers to a fictional character in the humorous books The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.

Story

The game's actors were filmed on a blue screen and placed into the game's render environments. Due to an error in the filming process, however, the filmed characters were found to have a ghostly aura around them. The game makers worked around this problem by changing the story to make all the characters ghosts.

The Official strategy guide for the game included the full pre-shooting script for the game. Innumerable changes were made during production due to various limitations (and a decision midway through to cut most of the blood and violence). Had the game been made according to the original plans, it would have been far scarier.

The Fat Man

George "The Fat Man" Alistair Sanger, the composer of the game's soundtrack has his picture in the game. You can view it here: http://www.fatman.com/t7gphoto.htm

If you tend to travel a lot, you might have been to "TGI Fridays"... A friend of The Fat Man did the interiors of the hotels and added some real portraits of The Fat Man - pretending, they are pretty old...

He booked two women from the hairdressing salon on the other side of his studio to sing on the red book-part of the soundtrack.

Awards

  • Computer Gaming World
    • November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) –#2 Worst Back Story of All Time
  • Electronic Entertainment
    • March 1994 – Editors' Choice Awards: Breakthrough Game
  • FLUX
  • Issue #4 - #23 in the Top 100 Video Games of All-Time list

  • GameStar (Germany)

    • Issue 12/1999 - #74 in the "100 Most Important PC Games of the Nineties" ranking

Additional information contributed by Alan Chan, Big John WV, Cabeza2000, Chris Martin, Daniel Saner, [Foxhack](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,33543/), [Mickey Gabel](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,584/), [Pseudo_Intellectual](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,49363/), [Sciere](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,30979/), [silent_driver](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,62819/), [tarion](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,15660/), [Tomer Gabel](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,60/) and [WizardX](http://www.mobygames.com/user/sheet/userSheetId,1444/)

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Related Sites +

  • 7th Guest Setup for Windows XP
    Inferno's guide
  • Crap Shoot
    A humorous review on PC Gamer
  • GameSpot
    A huge, special article about Trilobyte's origin, work and eventual demise. An excellent read.
  • Let's Play The 7th Guest
    Malorie's playthrough of the game on the Let's Play Archive
  • Playing Old Adventure Games: Part 6
    An article at Adventure Lantern that provides a history of Trilobyte, Inc., a brief overview of the game, and instructions on installing and running the game under Windows XP (December, 2007).
  • ScummVM
    supports the DOS and Windows versions under Macintosh, Windows and other platforms.
  • The 7th Guest - FAQs & Guides
    Several walkthroughs & link to UHS hint file.
  • The Dollhouse
    Fan site with in-game screenshots, mouse cursors, links to purchase legitimate copies of the game, and more.

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 283
  • [ Please login / register to view all identifiers ]

Contribute

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 Trixter.

iPhone, iPad added by Techademus. CD-i added by Corn Popper. Linux added by Sciere. Macintosh added by Terok Nor. Windows added by Jeanne.

Additional contributors: xroox, Tomer Gabel, Jeanne, Cabeza2000, Echidna Boy, Havoc Crow, Crawly, Zeppin, Macs Black, Patrick Bregger, FatherJack, Harmony♡.

Game added September 19, 1999. Last modified January 29, 2024.