A lovely starter home, needs some maintenance
Point and Click horror adventures seem to be en vogue with indie developers of late. As a huge fan of the genre, Game Debate couldn’t be more pleased, although our supplies of unstained pants are rapidly dwindling.
Tomb of Zojir: Last Half of Darkness is actually the third game in the ‘Last Half of Darkness’ trilogy, with all three games coming from the macabre mind of developer William R Fisher. However, Tomb of Zojir stands up by itself, so you don’t need to play the other games first to understand what the hell is going on.
All action takes place from a first-person perspective, in the same vein as the Dark Fall series and the upcoming Baron Wittard: Nemesis of Ragnorak. Each environment is presented as a still shot, so you can’t look around as you please. Instead, you interact with objects via the mouse cursor, and move in set directions by clicking on the screen edges.
One oddity with Tomb of Zojir is the inability to turn around, to face in different directions. If you walk down a corridor and reach a dead-end, you effectively have to hop backwards to get back out. It’s disorienting at first and occasionally confusing as hell, as it’s not always obvious which direction you arrived from.
Tomb of Zojir’s art is for the most part well produced, with a variety of dark and creepy environments to explore. One or two character models stood out as particularly blocky, but this is forgivable considering a single person created the game from scratch. We were pleased to see animation mixed in with the still environments, to add a little atmosphere and make it feel less like you're playing a slideshow.
This being a horror game, you obviously have scary crap jumping out at you from the shadows at regular intervals. For the most part these scare moments are well timed and we found ourselves jumping and jerking about the place, which brought great amusement to any bystanders. Laptop users take heed, as your portable pal will most likely end up in tiny pieces on the ground.
Puzzles are an essential aspect of any adventure game, and Tomb of Zojir’s don’t disappoint. The plot has you searching for a lost tomb (of Zojir, no less) on a sinister island, which proves to be a great deal tougher than it sounds. In order to protect this tomb from thieves, the local community has wisely built a number of traps. These traps form a chunk of the puzzles, while the rest are simple real-world conundrums, such as finding keys for doors or passwords for computers. One or two particularly inventive efforts even involve items that come inside the game box, although saying any more would be spoilerific.
Tomb of Zojir has a near perfect difficulty level, with very few frustrating moments. The odd bit of pixel-hunting aside, we really enjoyed this adventure, which kept us busy for well over the standard ten hours. Best of all, it’ll run on any modern machine, with the exception of dainty netbooks.
And there goes our final clean pair