Description official description
Dracula Unleashed is an interactive movie in the same vein as Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective. Basically, you can choose from several locations to go to, and at each location you are shown different events through live-action video clips. Clues in the videos will point you to where you should go next. You also have an "inventory" which you can use to affect the outcome of certain clips (for example, if you enter an asylum with the blackjack you'll be able to defend yourself against any escaped inmates, but if you don't bring the blackjack with you you'll be killed). Time is constantly moving and new events will pop up at different times of the day.
In Dracula Unleashed it is the year 1899, ten years after the destruction of count Dracula chronicled in Bram Stoker's novel. You take the role of Alexander Morris, the younger brother of Texan Quincey Morris who died defeating Dracula. Alexander has come to London to investigate the circumstances of his brother's death, but became sidetracked when he fell in love with and proposed to a local girl named Annisette.
Now, the dawn of a new millennium approaches and an evil force is stalking the streets of London, draining victims of their blood and transforming innocent women into bloodthirsty vampiresses. With the aide of your brother's old friends, the survivors of Dracula's evil, you must uncover the identity of this new vampire and prevent him from transforming Annisette into his queen of the night. Do not fail her, or she will personally rip your throat out.
Credits (DOS version)
108 People (105 developers, 3 thanks) · View all
|Original storyline by
|Based on characters & situations created by
|Game design by
|Original music by
|Special effects by
|Director of Photography
|[ full credits ]
Average score: 67% (based on 27 ratings)
Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 26 ratings with 2 reviews)
Dracula Unleashed is one of the better efforts to combine graphic adventure gaming with full motion video (FMV). Everything from the computer version -- i.e. the puzzles, items, moody music, B-minus acting and supernatural elements are here for Sega CD gamers. Well, almost...
This is not a perfect translation of the computer game, mainly because of the hardware limitations of the Sega CD. While it was common for personal computers to be able to display 256+ colors on screen, the Sega CD could only display 64 colors on screen. As a result, the video quality is worse then the personal computer, but the video is shown in a large screen.
The other faults are the same as the computer version. If you do not enjoy graphic adventure games -- with their emphasis on talking to people, collecting items and solving puzzles -- this game will bore you quickly.
The replay value is somewhat limited after you have solved all of the puzzles. You might want to play the game again to see what happens if you fail to solve a puzzle or to impress your friends, but otherwise the game gets old.
Last, but not least, the game is not terribly scary and sometimes, as was often the case with FMV video, the B- acting might invoke more humor then suspense or sheer terror.
The Bottom Line
Dracula Unleashed was one of a handful of games to appear during the early days of CD-ROM gaming that sought to combine traditional point and click adventure gaming with full motion video.
Given the significant hardware limitations of the Sega CD, this game is a near perfect recreation of the original computer game with the quality of the FMV being the major exception.
If you enjoyed the 'Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective' games and want a longer mystery, involving vampires, then you should give this game a try.
SEGA CD · by ETJB (428) · 2010
Video-only games usually don't appeal to me. Aside from Gabriel Knight 2, this is probably the only other one I devoted enough time to complete. To understand why for the sake of this review, I had to actually sit and think about it.
The setting, of course, is a major draw. Late 19th century London is a perfect setting in general and the stereotypical one for classic Vampire works. ICOM did a decent enough job utilizing props, clothing, and other aspects from that time period to make the whole game seem like it truly was set in 1899. Unlike some full-motion video games that played like the cheapest of b-movies, this one has surprising taste and used their budget well.
The actors are fairly good as well. For this genre, I would daresay the actors are remarkable. Most can act and can do so without hamming it up either. Some of the characters are portrayed better here than they were in the Dracula movie that came out the previous year (sorry Keanu). You will actually find yourself playing to watch the actors, not just get to the end of the game, like in most games of this type.
The music, though mostly not original, is perfect for the whole gothic horror genre, and is present when needed by the storyline.
This is, after all, a full motion video game and suffers from all the limitations of the type. You are restricted to exactly whatever the story is scripted to show you in the videos. You can only have encounters when and where they are assigned and your actions are very restricted. In fact, your only true choice of 'actions' is in the item that you currently have active in your inventory before you engage in that scene. This makes the game very frustrating as you sometimes have no clue what you may need for a particular scene before you see it. Being unable to change an item halfway through the scene hampers your ability to react. More often than not, you are forced to watch the scene and possibly die and reload to a previous save game and be prepared next time. For most gamers, this is not a truly enjoyable way to play a game. For those who just wish to watch the videos, find a walk-through somewhere to save you from the frustration.
While the fact that this game picks up from where the novel leaves off and stays traditional, the story sometimes lacks originality. Anyone who's read the novel or seen one of the better movie translations will find themselves repeating aspects from the original work.
The Bottom Line
A full-motion video game that is a sequel to the classic Dracula story, you play the brother of one of the original characters who finds himself facing off against the vengeful vampire in an attempt to save the life (and soul) of the woman you love. A surprisingly good addition to the usually sub-quality genre. Fans of full motion video games and those Dracula fans willing to fight their way through the interface to see a decent vampire movie should catch this game. Adventure game players or those seeking more options and depth should avoid this and protect themselves with garlic.
DOS · by Ray Soderlund (3501) · 2000
Platform independent release
A remastered version of Dracula Unleashed on DVD was released in 2002. It features much higher quality videos and sound plus "A making of" clip. Game can be played on usual DVD-player with a remote control, as well as on DVD-ROM, PS2 and X-Box.
- Computer Gaming World
- November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) – #13 Most Memorable Game Villain (Count Dracula)
Information also contributed by Virgil
Related Sites +
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 Alan Chan.
Game added November 23, 1999. Last modified August 14, 2023.