Friday, 18 September 2020
In the 90s, point and click games were in their prime. We had classics such as Grim Fandango, Monkey Island, I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, Myst, and many others. While yes, the genre was flawed, good things did come out of it. One game that really flew under the radar was The Adventures of Down Under Dan, releasing in 1995 to the Australian and United Kingdom markets only. The game even takes place in Australia, if the title didn’t give it away. It boasted full voiceover, real videos, and digitized actors, which was still a selling point at that time.
Friday, 11 September 2020
I'm back from a little holiday with another TOP 10 list! This time we're looking at the oft-maligned FMV adventure, complete with over-the-top acting and CD count! Not all of them deserve the bad reputation associated with the genre so I've collated some of the absolute best. Don't expect the revered likes of Gabriel Knight or The 7th Guest which are easily available to buy online. These are the forgotten gems that no-one seems to talk about anymore (if they ever did).
There's even a number of games not previously featured on the site (including QUANTUM GATE and THE CASSANDRA GALLERIES), so go check them out too!
Friday, 21 August 2020
Game Workshop's Warhammer series of tabletop strategy games spawned a bunch of spin-offs and spin-offs of spin-offs. First launching in 1989, Space Hulk took the sprawling sci-fi setting of Warhammer 40K and shrunk it down to the small claustrophobic corridors of many a derelict spacecraft. These were known as Space Hulks, and that premise begat a rather successful videogame franchise, including this second entry from Electronic Arts; Space Hulk: Vengeance of the Blood Angels.
Friday, 14 August 2020
I've played a fair few FMV games in my time and regardless of their overall quality, they all tend to share the same problem - a conflict between the game's design and the rigid nature of moviemaking. Published by Sierra in 1996, Coktel Vision's Urban Runner epitomises all that can go wrong when the two art forms collide.
Friday, 7 August 2020
Let's drop some coins and visit the twisted arcade realm of CarnEvil (1998, Midway). I reviewed this horror themed light gun shooter way back in 2016 but now we have the video review! The game remained exclusive to the arcades, so watch the video then play the game to find out what you all have been missing.
I've also just created a Patreon page for those who really like what I'm doing here. Check it out here. Click the link after the jump to find out more.
Friday, 31 July 2020
Come and see what July has in store for The Collection Chamber! I recently ranked Cybercon III (1991, The Assembly Line) and Hades (1995, Ablex) in a Top 10 Hidden Gems video and now you can play them for yourself to see how you'd rate them. Let's not forget Defiance (1997, Avalon Hill) and Shadow of Destiny/Memories (2002, Konami) that each got the full video review treatment.
New to the Chamber is Darklight Conflict (1997, Rage Software), a visually impressive space combat sim, 3D Ultra Cool Pool (1999, Sierra On-Line) which is, well, cool pool, and the third game in the Dr. Brain series; The Lost Mind of Dr. Brain (1995, Sierra On-Line).
Let's not forget the one update for the month: S.C.A.R.A.B. (1997, Electronic Arts) which now has multiple options on how to play it on Windows 10.
Watch the video roundup. then find out more after the jump!
Friday, 24 July 2020
We're revisiting one of the earlier games I reviewed for The Collection Chamber - S.C.A.R.A.B. (1997 Electronic Arts). My opinion on this 3D arena shooter with a heavy emphasis on strategy seems to changes every time I boot it up. Watch the video to find out my current thoughts, then see my 5-years out of date sentiments in the original review linked below.
I've updated the installer too, so it's the perfect time to play it again and see if your own views on it have changed too. Click the link after the jump to find out more.
Friday, 17 July 2020
At times, revisiting old games can be fascinating. As trends and design philosophy change, so do your opinions on what once flooded the market. Games that were once considered classics are now unremarkable. Others that were deemed bland and repetitive now feel like quintessential releases of the era. For me, Defiance, a first-person shooter from 1997 published by Avalon Hill, fits right into that latter category.
Friday, 10 July 2020
We're doing something a little different today - a Top 10 video! Only, this being The Collection Chamber, it has to be about obscure hidden gems! Check out the video and let me know any that I've missed.
Some have already been featured on the site so follow the jump to link to their review.
Friday, 3 July 2020
Shadow of Destiny (or Shadow of Memories as it was known as over here) was the third PlayStation 2 game I ever purchased. It came a whole four months after the console's November 2000 launch, which I naturally bought immediately after saving up for months. While I managed to beat Konami's quirky adventure game fairly quickly, returning to the likes of TimeSplitters or Tekken Tag Tournament far more often, the images it conjured still managed to stick with me for many, many years. I remember being wowed by the graphics, totally immersed in the distinctly Bavarian town and gripped by the time-travelling mystery contained within it. It's been almost 20 years since I've played it, so I anxiously revisited it to see if my fond memories still hold weight or will they be overshadowed by the ravages of time.
Friday, 26 June 2020
Treat yourself to a plethora of retro gaming goodness this June on the Collection Chamber. Play some wacky minigolf in 3D Ultra MiniGolf (1997 Sierra On-Line), uncover a corrupt police force in the Amiga RPG Captive II: Liberation (1993 Mindscape) then solve some devious puzzles in The Island of Dr. Brain (1992 Sierra On-Line). There are more brain teasers to be found in Marble Drop (1997 Maxis) but if you want some action, try out the criminally underrated FPS Wrath of Earth (1995 Assix Software).
Friday, 19 June 2020
While in lockdown, I've visited a number of places throughout history without leaving the slight discomfort of my cheap gaming chair. From Ancient Rome to China's Garden of Perfect Brightness, the virtual holidays are a perfect way to satisfy any unrequited wanderlust. Recently, I travelled to Versailles circa 1685 thanks to a little game by Cryo Interactive Entertainment.
Friday, 12 June 2020
At on time, Star Trek games were very hit and miss. All throughout the 90s, we had a slew of great adventure games, a plethora of average platformers and some awful action games but by the beginning of the new millennium, the quality began to take a notable shift for the better. With an aim to mimic the action-adventure acrobatics of Tomb Raider, Star Trek: Deep Space 9 - The Fallen (2000, Simon & Schuster Interactive) was one of the many highlights of those times.
Friday, 29 May 2020
Our May Movie celebration comes to a close with a quintet of licenced games. Aid the caped crusader through the events of Batman Returns (1992 Konami) in this relatively unknown point-and-click adventure. Take to the skies and defeat alien invaders in Independence Day: The Game (1997 Fox Interactive). Sometimes, all you need is a menagerie of talking animals to save the world - and Michael Jordan. Gather a team of Looney Tunes to play basketball against some aliens in Space Jam (1996 Warner Bros). Get back down to earth in a compilation of Lethal Weapon games. Lethal Weapon Collection (1992-1993 Ocean) features 5 unique games over 6 platforms. Finally, future earth has been flooded, so do your best to survive the real-time strategy in Waterworld: The Quest for Dry Land (1997 Interplay).
Watch our video roundup below or check them out yourself after the jump.
Friday, 22 May 2020
Out of all of James Camerons' back catalogue of blockbusters, I've always felt The Abyss to be a bit underappreciated. Sure, the visual effects were a milestone in moviemaking but underneath all of that is a thought-provoking sci-fi that's as deep as the depths the story takes you. In 1998, a year shy of its 10th anniversary, a little known developer by the name of Sound Source Interactive took that ageing I.P. and created a somewhat forgotten first-person action-adventure.
Friday, 8 May 2020
Anyone with even a passing interest in French cinema has probably heard of the directing duo Jeunet and Caro. The former made inroads into Hollywood by directing Alien Resurrection before returning to his Parisian roots in a big way with the sublime Amelie. After a directorial hiatus, the latter made the underrated sci-fi Dante 01. It's their combined efforts that have earned them their early acclaim with Delicatessen in 1991 and a little oddity from 1995 known as The City of Lost Children. This visually arresting fable even got a belated video game adaptation a few years later thanks to Psygnosis.
Friday, 24 April 2020
Occupy your quarantined mind with April's selection of games from the Collection Chamber. Flip some balls in a theme park in 3D Ultra Pinball: Thrillride (2000 Dynamix). Solve some science puzzles in The Castle of Dr. Brain (1991 Sierra On-Line). Enter a VR sporting tournament in Locus (1995 Zombie LLC). Cure infected minds in Plague: In the Maze of the Mind (1996 Microforum) then cure infected hard drives in Virus: The Game (1997 Kiddum Multimedia & Telstar Electronics). Head on in to check them out.
Friday, 17 April 2020
After exploring two deserted space ships in both Majestic: Part 1 - Alien Encounter and Symbiocom, Istvan Pely's third and final entry in the Majestic series takes a different approach. This time, it's a barren planet named Rheom 1, inhabited solely by a team of scientists working on a secret project called the Satin Project. On top of that, this 1998 indie adventure again published by Bethesda is now played in the third-person. Will this change of direction make for a better or worse experience than the underappreciated gems that came before?
Saturday, 11 April 2020
With an exciting opening of spaceships attacking a planet, as a young boy named Milo watches only to be dragged away by his Grandma to escape underground before total destruction. Chronomaster (1995, DreamForge Intertainment) sure grabbed my attention.
Friday, 27 March 2020
Hello fellow humans. We've got a plethora of out-of-this-world treats this week with a quintet of alien-themed gems. This marks our 400th game on the site (have you checked them all out?)! Don't panic with Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Collection (1984-2010 Various), a four-game package including the classic Infocom text-adventure and the fanmade remake. Solve some pre-algebraic equations in Math Blaster Mystery: The Great Brain Robbery (1994 Davidson & Associates). Then have a game of intergalactic air hockey in Shufflepuck Cafe (1989 Brøderbund Software Inc). Filter fact from fiction in the educational CD-ROM all about aliens in Sightings: The UFO Encyclopedia (1997 Paramount Pictures). Lastly, shoot some alien bugs in the real-time-strategy Starship Troopers: Terran Ascendancy (2000 Blue Tongue Inc).
Friday, 13 March 2020
Before they were absorbed by Sony, Psygnosis were responsible for publishing some interesting games. Attack of the Saucerman, the sole release from Fube Industries Ltd, was an attempt at morphing the sci-fi stylings of a 1950s B-movie with an action-heavy mascot platformer. With Mars Attacks and Men in Black hitting cinemas, the late 90s had something of a renaissance of flying saucer schlock, the latter of which appears to be a heavy inspiration here. With its 2000 release (a year after the PlayStation original), did it miss the B-movie boat?
Friday, 6 March 2020
by Austin Brewer
Argonaut Software, a studio best known for its development of Star Fox and the Super Nintendo's Super FX chip, also developed the obscure DOS action-adventure known as Alien Odyssey in 1995. With a far more powerful system at their disposal, how does this innovative team fare on home computers?
Wednesday, 4 March 2020
It's been an entire year since I've last written one of these update posts, and man is there a lot to tell you about. From a plethora of small improvements behind the scenes to the introduction to our very own YouTube channel (not to mention the many games I've updated and improved), there's a lot to cover. Without further ado, let's jump in...
Friday, 28 February 2020
There's a whole world to visit in February's quintet of games. Travel the globe hunting for treasure in the edutainment hidden gem Bush Buck: Global Treasure Hunter (1990, PC Globe Inc). Then take a post-apocalyptic jaunt through Miami in the unofficial sequel to Wasteland that is Fountain of Dreams (1990 Electronic Arts). If you want a more violent foray into the future, check out Quarantine II: Road Warrior (1995 GameTek), an action-driving sequel that's just as gory as the first. If you suffer some wounds on your whirlwind trip, seek the advice of SimHealth: The National Health Care Simulation (1994 Thinking Tools Inc), an obscure entry into Maxis' Sim series. On your way back, stop off at a very romantic location (it is February after all) with William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet: An Interactive Trip to Verona Beach (1996 Fox Interactive). Read on to find out more.
Friday, 21 February 2020
With each generation, there is a successful new type of game that spawns many a copycat clone as gaming companies chase the financial success of that title. This current generation we have the model of games as service, the last generation Call of Duty spawned many copycats. A fair amount of generations before these, first-person point-and-click puzzle games were the genre-du-jour thank to the inspiration and popularity of Myst. Let's look at one such clone from 1996; The Sacred Mirror of Kofun.
Thursday, 6 February 2020
Istanbul, a city steeped in history and intrigue; that is the setting for Stormfront Studio's 1997 game Byzantine: The Betrayal. With the Discovery Channel heavily involved in its production, the exceptional conspiracy thriller at the heart of the story also doubles as an impressive travelogue of the Turkish capital that'll make anyone want to visit.
Sunday, 26 January 2020
We've got something for everyone in the first collection of mini-reviews of the new decade. Survive an alien game show in the 2D platformer Hunter Hunted (1996, Sierra On-Line). Mourn the loss of Terry Jones by playing the action platformer Monty Python's Flying Circus: The Computer Game (1991, Virgin Mastertronic). Spill blood in the ultra-gory fantasy action-RPG Moonstone: A Hard Day's Knight (1992, Mindscape). Want more blood? Then play Quarantine (1994, GameTek), an ultra-violent action/driving game. Lastly, save your planet in the sci-fi puzzle game Syyrah: The Warp Hunter (1997 Sunsoft). Enjoy!