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Publisher: Coladia Games    Genre: Adventure & RPG
Min OS X: 10.4    CPU: G5 @ 1600 MHz    RAM: 512 MB    Hard Disk: 2000 MB    Graphics: 64 MB VRAM

Destination: Treasure Island
May 27, 2009 | Ted Bade

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Destination: Treasure Island is an excellent graphical adventure game that offers a variety of challenging (but not impossible) puzzles to solve as you journey in this game set in the age of pirates and island adventures. The game offers great graphics, fun music, and a story line that had me hooked from the start.

I must admit, I have always been fascinated by pirate adventuresó the smell of the salt air, the cry of seagulls, the sound of huge canvas sails snapping in a breeze. So I wasnít surprised when I found myself captured by this game. My fascination aside, there are many elements to this game that make it a real winner.

The Destination: Treasure Island story line takes place several years after the novel Treasure Island ended. Jim Hawkins has his own ship to master and the craggy old Long John Silver is believed to be enjoying his ďearnedĒ retirement on the mainland with his wife. As Jim sits in his cabin going over his books, his ship is attacked and a parrot arrives with the last will and testament of Long John Silver. It makes Jim the inheritor of Long Johnís treasure, if only he can decipher a map and the enigmatic puzzle of words provided in the will. (Itís a pirate adventure, what else would you expect?)

As with any game of this genre, as you move around you find objects that might be used to solve part of the puzzle or help overcome a barrier. The cursor changes when an object in the environment can be picked up or interacted with in some way. It is a good idea to pick up anything you can, as it probably has some use. Also, try to remember areas of the game that can be interacted with. If you cannot do anything when you first go there, you will be back.

There are a variety of interesting variations to puzzles. Since this is a pirate game and pirates use knots, there are several puzzles where you need to tie a specific knot correctly. While solving this puzzle is simply a matter of choosing from a couple different images of the next step in the process, it was fun trying to see if I remembered all those knots I learned long ago.

Another puzzle variation I found interesting is that some objects can be disassembled and some or all of the parts can be combined with other objects to create a new object needed to solve a problem. While I donít want to give any of this great gameís secrets away, examples of this include combining two ropes and some blocks (as in block and tackle) to create a pulley system to get something out of a well. Another more complex example is combining thread and a needle to sew something, then later disassembling this combo to use the needle to make a device to point north. (There are more steps to this process, but I have already given too much away...)

Other puzzles include more classical ones of figuring out a numerical pattern, connecting a series of dots using a two-point device to climb up a ledge, unlocking a door using clues from a poem, and figuring out how to create an exact number using a set group of various valued coins. As with any game of this genre, sometimes necessary actions are obvious and other times they are vague. Often what you need to complete a task is near at hand, but not always. Hint: there are very few frames that you visit where there isnít something you need to pick up.

Most of the puzzles do require a bit of thinking, but arenít so tough that one decides to give up rather then play. Which doesn't mean I didnít run into a roadblock or two. Luckily several different walkthroughs are easily found on the Internet. I have played other such games of this genre that hammer the player with one complex puzzle after another, making the game more of a challenge but a lot less fun.

Movement in this game is frame by graphical frame. Each frame provides a basic QTVR-like interface allowing the player to look up, down, and all around. Once you visit an area, you can use the map provided by Long John to quickly mover to another area, rather than moving back manually. This feature is handy when you realize that you need to go to other areas to gather objects and create something.


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