Fans of Jonathan Boakes’ Dark Fall games have almost certainly played and loved Lost Crown, a point n’ click horror adventure game starring professional ghost botherer Nigel Danvers. The good news is that the sequel, Last Crown: Blackenrock, is due out in the next couple of weeks. And the also-good news is that fans can get a taster of what’s to come with Boakes’ mini adventure, Midnight Horror, which fills the gap between the two games.
Most of Midnight Horror takes place in Nigel’s local pub, The Bear, which is capitalising on the Halloween vibe by holding a spooky disco and various competitions. I kind of wish the pub was real and in easy walking distance from my home as it serves up beer for less than two quid. Good luck getting change from a fiver here in London.
Of course, it’s not long before the resident dog sniffs out something it doesn’t like and various supernatural happenings threaten to disrupt the evening. So it’s up to Nigel to come to the rescue, using his many ghost-hunting gadgets and a little help from the returning Lost Crown cast.
As with many point n’ click adventure games, Midnight Horror is very linear. If you haven’t picked up a certain object or fully spoken to a character then you won’t be allowed to progress, and a couple of times I found myself completely stuck until I found a missing hotspot or simply clicked on everything that I could. However, for the most part the game is logical and many hardcore adventure fans should make it through without resorting to a walkthrough.
Mr Boakes has added in a couple of mini games too, which are pretty simple diversions from the main gameplay. The likes of the Apple Bobbing game, where you simply click on the fruit as it pops into view, shouldn’t trouble anyone with even the most basic mouse-wielding skills. But despite their simplicity, they’re a welcome change of pace.
As for the scares, well, there are a couple of mild jump scare moments but Midnight Horror has more of a ‘fun’ vibe than the original Lost Crown game. Little jokes like the farty kitty and some of Nigel’s digs at the other residents help to lighten the atmosphere, although things do get quite sinister later on.
If you’re after a little taste of what The Last Crown: Blackenrock has in store, then Midnight Horror is well worth the tiny asking price. It may be short but it’s solid entertainment, with enough of a sinister vibe to pull in new horror-loving fans.