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Spooked! The Wonders of Science Reviews
Author: The Dominant Species (TDS)
Date: 2006
ADRIFT 4.0


Reviewed by Ren

The smallest of the three summer comp entries by some way, Spooked features hyper-paced gushing text that makes you feel like youíre being hit with the story. This isnít necessarily a bad thing, though it can get confusing as the person changes, the game speaking as you or we seemingly at random.

My main criticism is that I was never entirely sure what was going on. Even after the getting the phone call, I mostly wandered around in confusion. I managed to stumble through the game, but there were so many words I never really got a handle on exactly what was happening. The off-kilter logic didnít help, although the game itself wasnít too difficult. Having finished it, itís clear that this was just the introduction, but it still could have used a more obvious goal. It would have been easier to feel a part of it then.

I enjoyed interacting with the robot, and there was some fun stuff in the labs and later on; however, as a parody, I think it could have used some more jokes, especially at the very start.

The game feels a little untested. I couldnít locate a few things from the description (the door to the Mad lab is locked, but you canít see any door! etc), and no description kicks in when you enter the field lab.

Iíd still play the sequel, but my main thought after playing this was Ďwha . . . .?í


Reviewed by David Whyld (InsideAdrift 31)

A short game. Very short in fact. I think from start to finish it took me about ten minutes. While there are a few puzzles in the game, they're relatively easy so even someone like me, who has never been very good at puzzles, didnít have any trouble with them. 

The Wonders Of Science is the first part in a series of short games, and aside from a few rough edges it looks quite promising. The player is a scientist called Ben who needs to hand in a scientific article very shortly. Only he has a slight problem in that heís spilt mustard over the article, thus obscuring all the relevant parts, lost the backup copy, and canít remember what he wrote. 

While amusing in places, the game had a definite rushed feel to it and little attention seems to have been paid to ensuring it is bug free. Of bugs, it has quite a few*. Saying that, none of the bugs are real cripplers in terms of finishing the game, and none are going to stop you dead in your tracks, but they're bugs all the same. Considering the shortness of the game, it wouldnít have been a difficult task to have got rid of the majority of them. The worst offenders seemed to occur right at the end of the game, when there's an NPC who canít be spoken to and an invisible cage, though there are frequent typos littered throughout the text. 

* Although one that I came across when I first played the game seemed to have mysteriously fixed itself when I played through it game in order to write this review. 

Unlike the writerís previous two games, both of which were horrors, The Wonders Of Science has a few comical moments. Itís not a laugh out loud game, though I did grin a little at the ĎMací and ĎBiPodí digs and the robot in the hallway. 

Overall this wasnít a bad little game but it could have done with more attention being paid to fixing the bugs and checking the spelling. 

5 out of 10


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