I've played quite a bit of this game's "unofficial" demo before and knew I had loved it.
By unofficial I mean to say my buddy made me play it from somewhere in the middle of the game before it freaked me out something silly huddled up in a corner wanting my mommy.
Yesterday (October 17th, 2010) another good buddy of mine from Canada (The ever charming character of the BU - IS this Goliath we are talking about here?) was kind enough to exchange a creative writing assignment for three whole games in one single shot on steam.
These three games make up the whole of the Penumbra Series. So lets get into the Review shall we?
So where to continue from the last review, Well why not the second game titled:"Penumbra: Black Plague"
I will not be getting into the Technical side of the whole game here. It's the same Game engine as the First game with very little modifications done to it. Rather i'll be talking more about the Storyline...this game Picks up right where the last game left of. You (Philip) have not found your father yet but you do know that here is down here somewhere. While you've navigated the old mining shaft of the complex, you have found your way into an even darker secret. these are no mine shafts. And you have just stumbled onto the entrance of a Dark Laboratory of some nefarious doings. At the end of the dark hallways you see the shape of a man. a man you hoped would be your father and answers. Racing towards him, you heart still heavy with the death of another man by your hands. You are hit from behind and pass out.
Either you hadn't been out long or they really hit you harder then you thought. you head still throbbing and splitting when you come to, alone in some sort of makeshift holding cell. With some of the cunning you used to get your self through the events of the Overture, you quickly escape and find your self at a computer. Horrific Visions, voices in your mind, something is not right here. Whats going one. then a Computer with a friendly voice at the other end beckons you.
Her name is Anabel Swanson, and she has some bad news. the whole reason the complex was locked down like it was, was because there is a virus or some sort of infection running rampant in the Complex. worse yet, your starting to show signs of being infected.
One of the symptoms? Hearing voices, more to the point hearing a voice that is not your own. His name? Clarance you guardian angle, sort-of...
this game has more to it then first game. With more of a focus on problem solving and even less on combat. while in Overture you could with a lot of effort kill the mutated creatures. Here, the enemy are immune to any harm. worse yet you are not given tools to directly fight the monsters you'll be hunted by. Worse still, the voice in your head can also effect what you see and hear. You can't even trust your own eyes anymore. and it down right hate you.
As the game progresses clearances powers over your mind and body grow, and thus so does his tormenting of you. you'll be surprised what Clarance can actually make you do.
In terms of presentation and execution, Black Plague is the better game, while as a whole overture and Black plague are hand down great games. Black tells a more whole story however, and it really nails the point home that there is no escape for you. None what so ever. Your best bet is that you do what needs to be done with what little time you have left. Greater acts of sacrifice and such.
When you do finally find your father, it's a somewhat bitter sweet moment ruined by the voices in your head.That was kinda spoiling it , hopefully I forget everything - Goliath
Has your mind finally snapped while at the end of it all?
this game series takes all the best elements of a Classic HP Lovecraft and create it own original Story, placing you ad not only the observer, but the participant of the horrific events that unfold due you your own error of trying to understand what should not be understood.
Now let me be very clear here, Black Plague is the end of the Penumbra series. it the second of three games but the series is finished here. the next game takes place just where this game ends but this game is the end. I'd like to explain this but then I'd ruin it for you.
I give this game a 10 out of 10. It's a perfect game, and it a wild ride. You must play this for yourself in order to understand what I mean.