the writings of a mind

Genre: Adventure
Big Word: Knightmare
Strap: Before I bite your neck, do you mind if I talk to you for a few hours?

I had to steal from a priest. Itís not something Iím proud of, not even something that I wanted to do. But I had to see, I needed his spray bottle. He turned his back for a few seconds, and I snatched it through his kitchen window. I know it sounds bad, but I had to get a moped, which involved having a moustache. So I had to put masking tape on a hole in a barn door, so that when the cat ran through, itís fur would stick to the tape. That added to the glucose syrup from the dining room would make the perfect hairy-faced disguise. I needed the spray bottle to squirt the cat to make it go through the hole.

Ho, and if you will, hum. Gabriel Knight is back for the third time, and he has managed to maintain all the logic of his previous incarnations. If you havenít played either GKI or II, then you are in a lot of trouble from the start. It is entirely assumed that you have, and that you remember it in crystal clear clarity. But it has only been four years since the previous game.

So for those in the dark, Gabriel Knight is a Schattenjšger, one who by descent is bound to investigate things that go chomp in the night. Previously he has had cases involving voodoo murders (Sins of the Father) and werewolves (The Beast Within). This time round itís vampires, but not so youíd know it for the first seven hundred hours of play.

Itís a traditional point and clicker, given the 3D makeover that is so fashionable in such circles of society. This involves a new style of control interface where instead of moving the character about the screen, you move the screen about the character, and let him (or her) catch up. This works to some extent, but makes inventory access a nightmare beyond those with which Gab is afflicted.

There is a good story within, as there has been in the previous two games, but like the previous two, it is so heavily buried under endless hours of dialogue that you begin to really not care. There are far too many locations available at any one time, meaning that you have to wander miles to find the people with whom you must carry out these epic discourses. Also, there is an inherent racism against the French and English running throughout, that is not at all funny, and at some times revolting.

It is a shame that GK3 is so unpleasant to play, because all the constituent parts of a good adventure are here. But sadly it is all so slow and plodded, that youíll need the patience of a snail with chronic constipation to sit through it all.

Margin Notes:

Currying Favour

Tim Curry resumes his role as the voice of the eponymous hero, after bowing out for the second title when all was video captured acting. While he pulls off the drawling accent with no problems, his hamming up of the lines quickly becomes tedious and patronizing, and eventually insulting. Shame on him.

 Germs of a good idea, but buried beneath endless piles of tedious dialogue.


Tech Specs:

Publisher: Sierra
Developer: Sierra
Minimum System: P166 (233 w/o 3D card), 32Mb
Recommended: P266, 3D card, 3 button mouse
Multi-player: No
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