Jules Verne -
A preview by slydos, 16th February 2002
I had the possibility, to play the English demo of Cryo's newest adventure game "Jules Verne - 20,000 miles under the sea". The game will hit the European shelves in March 2002.
And Cryo's adventure game has a new face, at least the lady with the astronaut helmet has new face features and Cryo has also assigned t-bot, a new development studio, with the gamedesign.
(The game doesn't have anything to do with the adventure game of the same name by Southpeak Interactive, who produced a game in full motion video technique with real actors after the movie of the same name, which unfortunately never has been released.)
Now Cryo and t-bot have taken up this original French subject and created an adventure game after Jules Verne's probably most well-known novel. Jules Verne lived in the 19th century and is called "Father of Science Fiction", because he anticipated a number of technical developments with his stories.
Graphical basis were engravings of the 19th century. But the adventure takes place in the 21st century, when a research submarine, the USS Shark (which, by the way, really looks a bit like a shark), encounters a metallic object, four times larger then their ship, when investigating volcanic activities in the Atlantic Ocean.
In the intro we can watch the crew arguing about whether the object is to be examined or not. While the captain is against it however a young scientist against all rules offhand grabs a mini submarine and docks at the mysterious wreck. After entering through a hatch, we hear alarm bells and the hatch with the large letter "N" can't be opened any more.
Our young scientist is in the decompression chamber of a strange, old submarine. The game begins and we can scroll gently with the mouse in 1st-person-perspective in all directions. Under rust and dirt we detect the style of a long passed time. Our hero manages to enter further inside the ship and he seems not to be alone!
Though everything looks abandoned at first sight, but wasn't there a shadowy shape for a short moment, and to whom belongs the voice, saying "Welcome on board, Captain."?
The demo doesn't advance very far, but I could test the most important functions and menus. Not the typical Cryo surface, known from Atlantis or the history adventures.
On the left lower corner of the screen a palm and a backpack are constantly inserted, which can be opened with a leftclick of the mouse. If you collect an object, you can place it in the backpack, where it is kept in a small vertical inventory bar. If you drive the mouse over it, also a describing text pops up.
There you can also see a picture of our hero. If we want to use an object with him, we just have to click with it on him and he e.g. tightens the gloves. However it would have been more comfortable, if you could have simply closed the backpack or the palmtop with a right-click, instead of again and again driving there with the mouse to close it, because thus always changes the perspective too, whether you want it or not.
A hand cursor points the way to new scenes and lets us also manipulate things. The animated cursor shows likewise, if you can take or apply something. To learn intuitively and easily. Our hero adjusted his Palm at the beginning to automatic recording, so that all his words and thoughts can be stored in the note book and recalled again later. A simultaneous display of this texts in a window at the top of the screen can be also switched off in the option menu.
From the palm menu one can access through 9 buttons the note book, a voice-memory and -translator, a data base, where found documents are stored, a graphic data base showing the rooms already visited in plan view, the save/load menu, the option menu and the main menu, - the calculator and programming functions could not yet be called in the demo.
There are 8 save slots with pictures, similar to the Dracula games by Wanadoo, but not three-dimensional. Own text inputs to the savegames are not possible with Jules Verne. By the way, in the main menu there is also a link to the animation sequences of the game. You can watch here the already seen sequences again. Animation sequences, also during the game, can be aborted at any time with the escape key. The interface and the menus are easy to handle and help the gamer to be able to concentrate on the story and the actual game. You must not take your own notes.
The demo gives an idea of the dangers, our hero gets involved in and makes us curious about the puzzles to solve and and the secrets revealed around Captain Nemo and the Nautilus. The moderate price of scarcely 30 Euro points toward (today usual) a shorter gaming time - however that will show up.
Positive anyhow the fact that Cryo beside their new action segment and the rather moderate action-adventures of InUtero with "Jules Verne - 20,000 Miles Under the Sea" and by the way also with the Pompei successor "Jerusalem" again stakes on the adventure horse. The game is to come out apart from the CD version also on DVD and for the MAC. The release dates of these versions are not known yet.
Minimal system requirements PC: (played under Windows ME)
(played under Windows ME)
adventurearchiv - 16-02-02
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