A Game of Scares
GiN Weekly Time-Waster Review
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Welcome Time Wasters!
So this week I sat down and played The Last Door. The Last Door is an indie made, Kickstarter funded, point-and-click adventure game. The game is released in chapter format, with two chapters currently available. This review covers my experiences with The Last Door Chapter One: The Letter.
The story of The Last Door is one shrouded in mystery. The game opens up with players helping a man named Anthony Beechworth commit suicide (yup, the game starts with suicide), then the credits roll. Okay, it's the opening credits, and they take the player off to a distant town. At this town the player meets Devitt, who has just received a letter from one of his old boarding school buddies, Anthony (the same Anthony that just offed himself).The letter contains a phrase that only the two would know, assuming that there's trouble the protagonist sets off to his friend's mansion. From here the game turns into an adventure to find your friend and figure out why the mansion is deserted.
As I stated above, The Last Door is a point-and-click adventure game, which is a genre I haven't played in quite some time, but it is also a horror game (Why do I always get the point-and-click horror games, Black Mirror anyone). This is the point where I tell readers that I'm not big into the horror genre. I watched The Exorcist when I was nine and haven't had much love for the genre since. Alia on the other hand loves the stuff. I think I've seen more Silent Hill media than anybody else that hasn't played the games thanks to her.
Alright, alright, ramblings done, I'll get back on track now.
The gameplay of The Last Door is the same as most point-and-click adventure games. Players walk around and scan every room for minute details, and then take everything they've found and try to combine it in an effort to get past some sort of obstacle. There really isn't a whole lot that can be done with the gameplay in these types of games, which is fine. Some genres don't need changes to their gameplay every couple of years to keep them fresh, and I for one never want to do a quick-time event in a point-and-click adventure game.
The graphics in The Last Door aren't going to win the game any sort of awards. The game is really pixilated, more so than games going for that retro feel. It's still easy to navigate the environments, and objects aren't hard to identify.
More important than the graphics is the music of The Last Door. Being that The Last Door is an indie game, I have to admit that I wasn't expecting the music to be grand, but I was wrong. The music does such a good job at expressing feeling to the player. 'You're in a creepy basement?' 'Well let's play some low key piano music at just the right tempo to unsettle you.' The music keeps this mentality all game long, and it does wonders to one's paranoia.
I think the best thing about The Last Door is its atmosphere. I found myself waiting for jump scares (there are a couple, and yes, they did get me) and constantly looking for some demonic creature to chase me through the house. The game really reminded me of the first time I played Clock Tower on the Super Nintendo (minus the guy with a giant pair of scissors). There's that feeling of wanting to leave the mansion, but there's also a mystery that won't get solved unless I do it.
The Last Door is a game that is fuelled by its story and atmosphere. It has great music, subpar graphics and is the type of game that kept me on the edge of my seat.
The Last Door Chapter One: The Letter spooked me enough to give it 4 GiN Gems out of 5. Maybe I'll look into chapter two next week.
Billy loves nothing more than leveling and grinding through a good RPG. And he knows that Time Waster is not a negative term when it comes to games. : firstname.lastname@example.org.