famed archaeologist named Edward Lynton disappears mysteriously. Richard, his teenager son Richard sets out to discover what happened with his father. Unbeknown to him, the evil god Darsuggotha is trying to ascend from his dimension and incarnate on a heathen priest called Tzen. Richard must stop him, as the demon is bent on destroying the world.
Demon's Tomb: The Awakening is a text adventure set on England on modern times. The game starts with a prologue to the rest of the game, where the player controls the main character's father while he is fighting for his life. After this brief prelude, the story jumps to 16 years-old Richard and his search for his father in Britain's moors.
The parser is on par with the one developed by Infocom. It supports chain commands and adverb recognition, and goes beyond by adding support of mouse input and interface customization. These features are enabled on a menu that pops up when right-clicking on the screen.
The optional verb menu allows complete sentence construction with the mouse. The interface can be changed to several different ways of displaying text, from a Zorkish traditional full screen output to a scrolling window.
Some locations have a picture associated with them that can be displayed by pressing a key.
There is support for setting up macros within the game (for example, a "IN" abbreviation for "Inventory" can be set by entering DEFINE IN=INVENTORY).
The game has an online hint-system. The player gets clues by using the THINK ABOUT command with something in the game.
The game supports disk saving and loading, as well as memory saving and loading (with the commands RAM SAVE and RAM LOAD, respectively).
A huge and well-written adventure that's arguably Mastertronic's best adventure game, Demon's Tomb recalls Infocom's Infidel in that you play an archeologist who must save his findings for posterity. In the second half, though, you will play his son whose task is to find out what happens to his father's doomed expedition. Flexible parser and good graphics makes this an excellent game, and some puzzles are quite tough.
The more items you have Lynton preserve in the prologue, the more you'll be able to accomplish when you play Richard, although achieving complete victory eventually requires you to save everything. This is an original and interesting method of maintaining non-linearity in the game's puzzle structure, as the player can save a few items, then restore and try others to explore different possibilities in the game. Saving all of Lynton's research is the major challenge of the game, requiring flawless execution and perfect timing, but if you don't quite get it right, you're still able to do some serious exploration with what you do manage to save. The downside to this is that it's all too easy for a player to use the information obtained from Lynton's death to do better the next time. Worse still, some of the puzzles you solve as Richard exist only to provide you with information. Since there are no random elements in the game, the player has the option of completely bypassing these puzzles the next time through, thus eliminating a large portion of the game altogether. Also lost is the threat of the time limit -- the player is given only a few hours of game time to complete the quest. But by skipping puzzles, hours of time are saved, and any possibility of tension is gone. Some of the puzzles are generic, but a few, particularly the prologue, are quite good. There are a couple of minor red herrings that serve only to waste players' time, but nothing you'll spend hours trying vainly to use. The game's parser is adequate, not as advanced as Infocom's, but it allows you to accomplish what you need to without playing guess-the-verb, as well as letting you do some fun stuff (Sam accounts for a large portion of the game's humor). A menu-driven parser is available for non-typists that allows you to select verbs, objects, and prepositions with just a few keystrokes. The game also offers built-in hints in the form of a "THINK ABOUT" command that lets you see what Lynton or Richard makes of a particular item or place. This system does an admirable job of steering players in the right direction without giving away the entire solution.
Despite its shortcomings, Demon's Tomb is a fun game that will take you a good many hours to complete. It doesn't overwhelm beginners, and makes an effort to challenge more experienced players as well. Recommended!
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