IFReviewed by Dan Shiovitz on 2005-05-09 10:11
Man, I never thought I would see the day when I would be
recommending a fantasy adventure where the PC has a cat buddy. A magical cat
buddy. A magical talking cat buddy. Furthermore, the game does another thing I
can't stand, where the PC in this fantasy world finds this magical cape that
makes the wearer hopeful, so, hey, we'll call it the Cape of Good Hope ha ha I
kill me. Repeat fifty times or until dead. But, ok, putting aside all the lame
anachronistic puns (and the entire backstory involving them), Threnody is
basically a really good puzzle adventure of the kind I haven't seen in a while.
It took me about three and a half hours to get through one playthrough; I used
the hints maybe once or twice at most.
The puzzles were in general really good, sufficiently difficult to feel
satisfying when you get them but not so difficult that you spend hours on it —
but, hey, since this is a springcomp entry I was able to spend as much time as I
wanted without feeling like I was hitting a limit. The only time the puzzle
quality broke down was in the last bit of the game, when there was one puzzle of
a kind that's starting to approach the fifteen puzzle in terms of tedium for me,
and then one puzzle that was really much too easy. But besides that, excellent.
Oh, and did I mention that this is one of those games where you have three
characters to choose from, and the puzzles are different depending on what you
pick? I don't think many people are going to have the stamina to play through
the whole game a second or third time, but I enjoyed getting to pick one to
start with, and then spent an hour or so exploring the walkthroughs of the other
two once I'd finished the game.
Threnody is, unfortunately, not totally bug-free. I found a number of places
where descriptions didn't accurately reflect that I'd picked up an item, and
there's at one important place where >IN works when >ENTER THING doesn't. Oh,
and somehow I didn't get credit for picking up one of my treasures on my first
playthrough. But these are pretty minor, and I imagine they'll get cleared up in
a post-comp release. Even before that happens, if what you want is a good-sized
meaty puzzle adventure, Threnody would be an excellent choice.
3rd place on the 2005 Spring Thing.