Mystery of the Druids
Just when you would think that the adventure-genre was dead, CDV comes with a game that should bring life again to a gametype that once was one of the most popular but has lost the interest of most publishers.
In Mystery of the Druids you start of as Scotland Yard Detective Brent Halligan, a not so popular character in his world. You have to investigate several murders that happened in London after one of your colleagues messed up and got an innocent guy killed in prison.
After some checking out you find that Druids seem to have something to do with these ritual killings and with the help of a young female anthropologist called Melanie Turner and the old Druid expert Arthur Blake you start on your quest to stop the killings and along the way you save the world as we know it (where have we heard that before ?).
The storyline is well-done and as you’ll notice by opening the cd-box some time-travel is required. To make a long story short : 1000 years ago a powerful Druid-ritual was held and now the inheritors of the Druids are trying to complete that while you have to make sure they don’t succeed and to do that you’ll have to go back in time and stop the original ritual from ever happening.
Since there isn’t no fast-paced action the gameplay has to exist on a good storyline, very nice graphics and interesting puzzles.
Too bad that Mystery of the Druids lacks on these last two points.
A resolution of 640*480 (on “High Quality”) is not enough these days anymore in my opinion. The surroundings are very nicely pre-rendered but the characters themselves look like they were made 4 years ago. Defenitely outdated that is.
The puzzles are defenitely not always logical.
An example :
I need to make a phonecall but the phone in my office doesn’t work. I therefor have to get to a public phonebooth but don’t have any money with me to make the call. Therefor I have to go back to the office and make some alcoholic drink based on ethanol and orange juice so that I can feed that to a beggar on the other side of town so that I, being a policeman, can steal the few quarters he’s gotten together…
I think puzzles that require you to go up and down from one place to another and back rather hold up the joy of playing a game than increase it.
If that isn’t enough to get you irritated by the game, the sound is plain boring as hell and sometimes even starts to irritate the hell out of you. In a horror-adventure like these we don’t really want to hear happy melodies but rather music that makes us fear that evil is constantly lurking around the corner.
Last but not least there are quite alot of bugs in this game like House of Tales saw that their game was getting outdated and wanted to rush it to the stores. From reading the forums I noticed that quite alot of people seemed to experience constant crashing of the game although I myself didn’t experience that. I had another nice phenomenon called “people walking through objects” which wasn’t supposed to happen I think.
Halligan walking straight through a car, shadows going through closets,… all magical things only Druids were able to do I thought…
This review might give you a very bad impression of how this game is, but I have to say some positive things aswell : the characters have good depth (although they do tend to brabble way too much they try to give you an idea of their personality) and the storyline is interesting enough to keep you playing the game until the end.
Overall I would say that if Mystery of the Druids would have been released 3 years ago, it would have been a defenite top adventure. Unfortunately it now looks a bit outdated and is only worth buying if you’re really an adventure lover who wants to keep busy until the next adventure arrives