Titanic: Adventure Out of Time
Description official descriptions
Titanic: Adventure Out of Time is an open-ended first-person adventure game set on the doomed maiden voyage of the HMS Titanic. The player takes the role of Frank Carlson, a disgraced British secret service agent. His career having ended after he failed in a mission on board the HMS Titanic, he now lives in a small apartment, surrounded by mementos of his past. Somehow, however, Carlson is thrown backward into his past to April of 1912, giving the player an opportunity to change the events on board the doomed ship. While the player is not able to avert the sinking of the Titanic, they are able to influence not only Frank's timeline but that of the other passengers on board the ship and, indeed, the progression of subsequent human history. As a result, details of the game's plot are affected by the player's actions, which can result in one of any number of significant or minutely different endings.
The game is a puzzle-solving adventure game which utilizes a simple, point-and-click system in order for the player to interact with the world. While the game is played in the form of a traditional adventure game, it expands on this established system by constructing its game play around the idea of a continuous, transitory world. While the player still progresses through the game primarily through solving puzzles and interacting with other characters it presents these interactions as taking place within an active, malleable world. Characters, for instance, periodically move about the ship, and can be found in different portions of the ship during different times of day as they pursue their lives apart from the player.
Puzzles are similarly tied to this progression of time, and players may choose to pursue plot lines how ever they think is best, influencing both the plot and other puzzles within the game, allowing them to completely overlook or pass over entire puzzles and story points. Early in the game, for instance, the player is asked to locate an item hidden by another character. If they're able to discover its location early enough, they can take the item from its hiding spot before someone else does. If they're sidetracked by other characters within the world, or in some other way too slow in locating the object, the hiding spot will be empty and the plot will accommodate this development. It is important to note, however, that the game does not progress in real-time as other adventures, such as The Last Express, do. Rather, time progresses due to the player solving a puzzle or in some other way advancing the game.
In addition to the traditional puzzles within the game, there are also mini-games which the player can participate in either for fun or to influence the plot, such as poker and fencing.
The game is presented using 3D graphics, although the player still moves through the game by shifting from screen to screen, similar in style to the movement found in other adventure titles such as Riven. The bottom of the screen features a nautically-themed interface featuring a life preserver (the menu), a pocket watch (which represents the in-game time), a rolled piece of parchment (a map of the ship), and a leather case (the inventory).
- Титаник: Прошлое можно изменить - Russian spelling
Credits (Macintosh version)
182 People (102 developers, 80 thanks) · View all
|2D Design Director|
|Additional 3D Design|
|[ full credits ]|
Average score: 74% (based on 20 ratings)
Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 26 ratings with 4 reviews)
I liked the recreation of the Titanic. I also liked the storyline and the plot. The people are real looking and everything is accurate. The puzzles were good, the engine puzzle was the best I thought. I also liked how they managed to put loads to do in such a small place.
I didn't like the fact that 3 decks were missing and you don't realy go anywhere on E Deck. G deck was the bottom Deck in the game but on the real ship there were 3 more decks. It sometimes (but rarely) crashes.
The Bottom Line
A great stratergy/adventure game which will be loved by evryone who loves solving puzzles.
Windows · by Dean Cuthbert (2) · 2003
The excellent detailed graphics of the ship's interior and exterior.
The "twitches" when the "characters" are speaking. I would have liked more choices for dialogue with some of the "characters."
The Bottom Line
An excellent game even if you just use the "tour" option and even more fun if you play the game. I have even "won" a few times ! The detailed graphics are very vivid and faithful to the actual records of the interior and exterior of the ship. The interplay with the "characters" is very informative and often adds a bit of humor. You'll probably end up playing the game over and over just for the fun of it, even if you don't "win" every time...and "winning" isn't completely impossible !
Windows · by Robert Paige (1) · 2004
Titanic: Adventure out of time is a first person adventure game made in the 1990s... this means that it is extremely non-linear, doesn’t go crazy on far-fetched inventory items and puts gameplay emphasis on exploring a large, open game world. Personally I’ve missed such games and was quite taken with this one.
The game environment is pretty impressive: the developers have attempted to accurately recreate the Titanic using authentic schematics and photography. And they have done a spectacular job. This is the real, historic Titanic. Furthermore, the game has an alternative ‘exploration’ game mode wherein the player is free simply to wander the ship, taking in the atmosphere with all of that pesky plot and gameplay getting in the way. This was a nice, novel idea.
Where Titanic really stood out was in its remarkable gameplay and storyline. Unusually, I truly had the feeling whilst playing that I was driving the adventure, rather than the other way around. Decisions have to be made very carefully because it is possible to irreversibly do or say the wrong thing. Now, this may sound like it could be potentially very irritating and lead to a lot of dreaded ‘dead ends’ in gameplay but remarkably this is not the case. Without wanting to give too much away: the game’s plot largely revolves around trying to acquire different objects from around the ship; this is mostly done through interaction with the impressively large cast of characters, with the occasional cryptographic and lever-type puzzles and a bit of limited inventory work thrown in. It is possible to acquire these objects through different methods, following different gameplay paths. These are not mutually exclusive however. You will find yourself doing bits and pieces of different ‘paths’ as you progress, trying to link things up and seeing how it all fits together... yes, ladies and gentleman, this is honest to gosh, authentic, truly non-linear gaming; a sadly all but extinct breed. It is possible to ‘find’ one of these items, excitedly open the box... only to find that someone has beaten you to it. If you didn’t do the all the right things or took too long to do it you will fail to accomplish the necessary task. But this doesn’t result in the adventure being irrevocably messed up; right up until the end of the game there will be second chances to find all of the items you need. There are many subplots and intrigues to follow onboard the Titanic and exactly what you see and hear depends upon your gameplay choices.
This brings me to the next point: the characters. The cast is large and they all have their own stories and agendas. Also, rather than remain constantly in one place they move about the ship, turning up in different locations. This was a nice touch, although one down side to it was that it did occasionally necessitate a bit of aimless wandering, waiting (or hoping) to bump into a character in order to trigger game progress. There are a lot of clues to be found however and so many different plot strands and subplots that I rarely found myself at a total loss of ideas for progression. Although many of the character’s stories develop as subplots sooner or later they all become relevant to the main storyline (that is if you make the right connections of course)
The voice acting was hackneyed but accurate: authentic accents were used for the various characters, New York, Irish, Liverpudlian. Impressively, given the large cast list, no two characters were voiced by the same actor.
The game ending was spectacular. At a certain point it will become a desperate race against time to complete your mission as the Titanic strikes the iceberg and starts to go down. The progress of the ship’s sinking is marked by highly dramatic and exciting cut scenes depicting the carnage and mayhem. The lower areas of the ship will be cut off as the water level rises and the locations visibly tilt. Seeing how the various characters respond to what is happening is also dramatic, and occasionally moving. Who will make it off the ship? What you achieve in this part of the game will determine which of 8 different game endings you receive. Yes, not only does your mission evolve depending on what actions you take so too does it impact upon your game’s ending. Neither is the game too long that it precludes replaying to see a different sequence of events and ending. There is a rare replay value with this game.
Being a 1990s adventure game also means that attempts at innovation were still being made – the ‘ideal’ format for point and click adventure games had not yet been agreed upon. One of the consequences of this is the control system in Titanic: Adventure out of time: an entirely mouse driven interface is eschewed in favour of using the keyboard for movement and the mouse solely for interactive click spots. Given that the movement is still essentially Slideshow format (the left and right arrow keys are used to turn around and the up arrow to move forward) one wonders what the logic was behind this decision. I suppose it could only have been the desire for can simplification – reducing the mouse functions. But actually it has largely the opposite effect. Having to use the keyboard to turn the character, move him forward etc quickly becomes tiring, especially given the large amount of movement the player must make around the ship, often long distances from one point to another.
On the subject of navigation about the ship: one detrimental aspect of using the authentic designs for the Titanic is that the areas of the ship tend to be highly homogenous. One part looks much like another and I often had a fair bit of difficulty finding my way around the ship. This problem is exacerbated further towards the end of the game as it becomes a race against time and the map zip function is disabled. The frustration this bore me considerably lessened my enjoyment of what was otherwise a brilliantly conceived and executed end phase. Visually, it also made the scenery far too samey and I quickly lost the desire to look around quite as diligently as I should have.
The Bottom Line
This is true non-linear gameplay in all its glory. It isn’t without the odd design fault but it has more than enough pros to outweigh the cons and to tip one end of the ship more effectively than any iceberg.
Windows · by CBMan (184) · 2010
|A classic!||St. Martyne (3644)||Sep 21st, 2009|
|Installing on newer Macs?||Jen Paul||Apr 19th, 2009|
|Insall under Vista||James Millard||Jan 27th, 2008|
Part of Cyberflix's "Adventure out of Time" series of educational adventure games. Also features a detailed reconstruction of the ships interior using original design drawings from 1912.
Related Sites +
Hints for Titanic
These hints will help you solve it without spoiling the whole game.
Interview with Titanic's Producer
An interview with Andrew Nelson, the producer of and writer for <em>Titanic</em>, about the production of the game and the development of its characters and setting (Jan. 16th, 1998).
RMS Titanic Sets Sail Again
A Business Wire article about the game's release. (November 12th, 1996)
Sail On the Titanic and Never Get Wet
An article in The Augusta Chronicle about <em>Titanic: Adventure Out of Time</em>'s release and production. The company that created it, <moby company="Cyberflix">Cyberflix</moby>, is also discussed. (November 9th, 1996)
Titanic - A Dedicated Fanblog
A blog which intends to keep information about the title available to modern gamers. It provides additional details about the game, as well as puzzle solutions for the 1996 title (Spoilers).
Titanic Interactive Tour Guides
All ten of the interactive tour guides, formerly available for download from the official website, at the information resource site Titanic-Titanic.
Titanic-Titanic: A Walkthrough
A walkthrough of the game at the online Titanic resource, Titanic-Titanic, which is prefaced by a series of general tips intended to mitigate player confusion and frustration during the experience.
Titanic: Review and Walkthrough
A short review of <em>Adventure Out of Time</em> at Balmoral Software, which is followed by a detailed walkthrough of the game, illustrated by screenshots and maps from within the game itself (Nov. 26th, 1996).
A Macintosh review of <em>Adventure Out of Time</em> by Andrew Plotkin (June, 1999).
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Blackie.
Macintosh added by Dragom.
Game added January 3rd, 2001. Last modified September 16th, 2023.