Jim Hawkins is a young boy working on "Admiral Benbow", his parent's inn. One day a sea captain named Billy Bones takes a room at the inn and stays for several months. A blind man called Pew arrives and shows something to Billy that gives him a heart attack. Jim witness everything and runs to aid the captain, who tells him about his sea chest and his relationship with Captain Flint, a famous pirate. After her dies Jim grabs the key dangling from the corpse and opens the dead captain's chest to collect the last payment. He finds a packet inside, and decides to take it to two aristocratic acquaintances of his, Dr. Livesey and Squire John Trelawney. They discover a diary and a treasure map, and decide to travel to the island in search of the booty.
Treasure Island is a text adventure, an adaptation of the homonymous classic 1883 Scottish novel. Unlike the book, the game is written in second person. Otherwise, it follows the original plot closely: the player assumes the role of Jim Hawkins, and has to perform the same actions as the character in the novel. This leads to a more claustrophobic design, as players without knowledge of the book have to guess what to do next. To help alleviate that problem, other characters act as some sort of on-line hint system. The player can ASK them ABOUT anything and they will provide clues when these are available. The parser accepts most of the Infocom's standard features like pronouns and chain commands.
Louis Stevenson's classic, Treasure Island, is probably the most famous pirate tale of all time. The protagonist, a boy named Jim Hawkins, acquires a map to an infamous pirate's hoarded treasure, and he and his friends set out to find it. They enlist the help of several sea-faring men, among them a chef by the name of Long John Silver. Of course, things are not as simple as they original seem, and before long, Jim finds himself embroiled in a web of intrigue, deceit, and danger.
This game based on that book has mixed qualities. On one hand, it is rather enjoyably faithful to the book, but on the other hand, there are some scenes that one would not really know the significance of unless he had read the book. The first couple chapters, in particular, seem to have some parts like that. Some of these scenes are optional, though, and it seems that some of the puzzles had multiple solutions, which is always an interesting thing to see in older text games.
The puzzles are, for the most part, fair. There are a couple spots in which one might be stuck for a bit but there's nothing that will discourage the persistent. One of my bigger concerns was that the game doesn't successfully present the book's somewhat complex intrigues and manipulations but rather only alludes to them lightly. This, though, is partially remedied by a likeable depiction of Long John Silver. Overall, there are a lot of nice touches that help one get into the feel of the game, and the internal speaker music isn't half bad, either. I'd recommend this game to anyone who isn't a lousy landlubber. Arr!
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