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Thursday, June 21, 2007

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Penumbra: Overture Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 2 comments

Adrenaline Vault has posted a review of Frictonal Games' Penumbra: Overture, a first person perspective survival horror title focusing on story, immersion, and puzzles. The Vault gave the game a perfect score of 5 out of 5.

From the review:

This release is the first of three episodes. Although this first episode’s story is unclear, clues and tidbits will intrigue and frighten you. The basic premise of the game is that after your father’s death, you follow clues he left to a remote location in Greenland, where you crawl into a hatch to escape the bitter cold. A character called “Red” guides you as you venture ever deeper, and promises you the answers you seek. But can he be trusted? The game also gives you outstanding between-level text transitions that explain how the main character, Phillip, feels about the section you just played.

The level design is intriguing. When you enter a new area, it often seems like a vast network of tunnels to explore instead of a predictable series of rooms. Each area is used for a certain function, which you can learn by reading the papers strewn about and the items you find within the labyrinthine network. Although the majority of the game takes place indoors within one complex, and the level design makes you feel claustrophobic and scared, the rooms vary a lot, so each one feels fresh.

The enemies you face will keep you on the edge of your seat. Although just three types appear in the game, each one is different in every way. There are drooling, glowing-eyed dogs that howl into the night; ubiquitous, yet deadly, spiders that hatch from pulsating eggs and swarm all over you; and gray rockworms, frightening behemoths that can’t be killed and burst through steel doors to hunt you down. When you see their gaping maws full of razor-sharp teeth, run, or you’ll soon be a tasty snack.
The Mac version of Penumbra: Overture is still in beta testing. For more information about the beta's progress head over to the Frictional forums at the link below.

Adrenaline Vault: Penumbra Overture Review
Frictional Games Forum: Penumbra Demo Beta
Frictional Games
Penumbra: Overture

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