Temüjin Download (1997 Adventure Game)

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Resort to on-line or strategy manual walk throughs when playing adventure or puzzle games is not something most gamers should do as it hinders gaming experience. The only decent reason for using such help sources, in my opinion, is if the game is either too convoluted for human logic, frustrating or has unrewarding game play that does little more than waste time working out the answers (in other words, the story isn't compelling enough to warrant a large time investment).

Temüjin unfortunately fits the last category all too well. Although innovative in its approach to full motion video through the use of 35mm film, the problem lies in the somewhat weak and contrived storyline. Action takes place in the Stevenson Museum and revolves around an exhibit of artifacts from the ancient tomb of Temüjin, or as he's known in modern day history, Ghengis Kahn. You are thrust into the mystery without any real knowledge of the impending evil curse or dark magic that is awakening from the Capricorn Collection's gem-encrusted goat's head. One of the problems in the game stems from the somewhat small game world and the necessity to cover old ground over and over in order to collect all the mysteries and put them together.

The acting is fairly benign and the presentation is basically well done although not award material. The interface is from a first-person perspective and you wander the halls of the museum, happening upon individuals, hearing strange conversations and sounds and meeting a ghost, Mei, who gives hints or clues as to the mystery you've somehow gotten involved in and explains, excruciatingly slowly, what you must do in order to keep this horrible evil from re-awakening. Not surprisingly, you can't just turn around and walk out the front door, leaving this menace for someone else to clean up -- more's the pity.

Playing Temüjin feels shallow somehow with the suspension of disbelief not easy to attain. For that reason, once into the game you still want to see the final outcome but not at the expense of a serious time investment. Thus the understandable need or desire for a walkthough. It's akin to watching Chevy Chase scan the Grand Canyon for a second in Family Vacation -- a nod and then on to bigger and better things.

Temüjin's puzzles range from weak to moderate with nothing really too difficult for the veteran gamer. Unfortunately, there is nothing especially captivating about the game play or visual effects either. The interface is simple to use and the interaction with the puzzles is handled fairly well as is the integration of the live video shots of the people you meet. But there is just that intangible something that gets in the way of Temüjin being a truly immersive and adventurous experience.

Graphics: Innovative use of 35mm film but still not as clear as you might expect.

Sound: Ambient sounds and "off-stage" voices (screams and whispers) are well done. The music is not inspiring not particularly mood enhancing.

Enjoyment: Searches become tedious as the same ground is covered again and again. The slow evolution of the mystery grates after a while.

Replay Value: No redeeming replay value.


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