More Reviews
REVIEWS Slender: The Arrival Review
Few games can offer genuine scares in the horror genre. Can Slender: The Arrival prove otherwise and it can offer more?

Pillars of Eternity Review
Obsidian Entertainment creates a retro Infinity Engine RPG funded by Kickstarter. Is it as good as previous Infinity Engine games, or does the novelty quickly wear off?
More Previews
PREVIEWS Dirty Bomb Preview
Looking for a more competitive, challenging online FPS multiplayer game? Splash Damage is introducing just that by dropping a Dirty Bomb on the free-to-play game market.

LATEST FEATURES 6 Helpful Tips for Pillars of Eternity
Simply put, Pillars of Eternity can become maddening if players aren't careful.

Top 10 Active Video Game Kickstarter Campaigns
There are lots of indie projects going on right now, so we did the dirty work for you and found the best.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Top 50 Pokémon of All Time
Can you believe there are now six generations of Pokémon? Six!! That's a crazy amount of different creatures to collect. But which are the cream of the crop? Don't worry, Magikarp isn't actually one of them.

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP shandog137
The perils of the Hype Train…
By shandog137
Posted on 03/09/15
The recent release of Evolve and The Order 1886 really got me to thinking about the disparity between the perspective of sales-driven publishers and the quality-driven purchases of consumers. The “Hype Train” is nothing new, but the way it is utilized has been creating far more...

Zork Grand Inquisitor Review

Clint By:
Clint
06/05/04
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE  
PLAYERS 1- 2 
PUBLISHER Activision 
DEVELOPER  
RELEASE DATE  
MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
T Contains Comic Mischief, Suggestive Themes, Use of Alcohol and Tobacco

What do these ratings mean?

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...

Episode IIX: A New Trilogy (dah-duh dah dah dah duh duh...)

The Grand Inquisitor of the Empire has outlawed magic in the kingdom of Zork in an effort to maintain control of its citizenry. The pro-magic resistance movement has put its faith behind a young adventurer who has the potential to change the Great Underground Empire and to overthrow the Grand Inquisitor. With the guidance of the disembodied Dungeon Master, there is a new hope for the people of Zork.

The Zork series spans a time greater than many game-players today have lived. Twenty years ago Zork I was released, and it laid the foundation for one of the most successful adventure series of all time. Originally based solely on text, the Zork games have grown with the new technology and can be considered one of the most influential series in gaming. Zork Grand Inquisitor is the first in a new trilogy of Zork adventure games, which will be the first time three Zork games have been intertwined since Zork I, II, and III.

Although Grand Inquisitor may be chock full 'o Zork nostalgia, there is room for newcomers like myself (it says so in the instruction manual). Grand Inquisitor is played in the first person perspective in the strange and mysterious world of Zork. You are the adventurer who has somehow been entangled in the turmoil over magic. Using your noodle and your trusty, disembodied, dungeon master-in-a-lamp, you have to solve puzzles, gather clues, outwit monsters, cast spells, and destroy things. Your basic adventure I would say.

In order to make the adventuring experience more realistic, Activision has improved on their Z-Vision system of display. Z-Vision combines live-action video, detailed graphics, and 360 degree movement to enhance the sense of reality. I agree with the hype/jargon to some degree; the 360 degree movement of the screen with detailed graphics and seamless movies makes Grand Inquisitor more lifelike than some other adventure games. The problem is that the game still requires you to click to move backwards and forwards, so the game isn't entirely flowing. I applaud them on the 360 degree viewing though because the artwork is excellent and appears very realistic as you turn around.

Another strong point in Zork is the full motion video scenes. Activision hired quality actors to play the roles of the wacky citizens of Zork. The actors include Dirk Benedict (A-Team), Rip Taylor (Gong Show), and Erick Avari (Stargate). Okay, it isn't Emmy Award winning work, but it is a hell of a lot better than the 'acting' seen in games like Resident Evil. Plus, the Zork series is known for its weird characters and sarcastic humor, and the characters in Grand Inquisitor follow this standard to a 'T.' All of the movies and 3D animations are well done and flow perfectly with the game.

Of course the adventure is the reason to buy the game, and the designers didn't hold anything back in that department. Grand Inquisitor packs two CD's of intense puzzle and problem solving. The game plays like most adventure games. You gather items and spells and interact with objects in order to progress. At times you have to react quickly in order to survive, so you have to be on your toes. There are numerous areas to explore and just tons of things to accomplish. Unfortunately, this has the side effect of making Grand Inquisitor very difficult. There is little guidance in the game, so you often get stuck with no idea what to do. Of course you can always get the game walkthrough provided online by Activision to help you along. With the walkthrough in hand for emergencies, Grand Inquisitor is a great adventure.

Since multi-player games are so hot these days, Activision included a linked mode where you can team up with someone to play Grand Inquisitor. One person controls the mouse movement and the other controls a cursor that directs the controller. This can be done over the internet, modem, or IPX Network (LAN).

Grand Inquisitor is a great adventure, but there is always room for improvement. I felt that many of the puzzles should have been clearer in order to keep down on frustration time. A help function might have made the game more enjoyable. Grand Inquisitor is also very repetitive in the way you constantly walk around clicking on things. Perhaps they could have put some small action scenes such as those in The Curse of Monkey Island in order to break the tedium. Finally, music would have helped. There are great sounds and voices to hear, but the silence can drive you mad, especially since you can walk around for a long time without hearing anything. The lack of music makes the game seem even more monotonous.

Zork fans should be pleased with this title, especially since it is a promising start to a new trilogy. I was impressed and I'm a first timer. Grand Inquisitor is a good adventure, but it could have been better. It's a solid game: there's nothing really wrong with it, but it doesn't have the makings of a 'revolutionary' game.

B Revolution report card
  • + Cool 360 degree vision
  • + Great graphics and movies
  • + Long adventure
  • - Repetitive
  • - Maddening silence
    Reviews by other members
    No member reviews for the game.


More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about Zork Grand Inquisitor


More On GameRevolution