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Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy
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Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy
Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy

Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy

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Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy Product Overview Judgement day has come for Earth, and time is running out. As the Chosen One,you are the only thing standing between the human race and an apocalypse.Saving the world in _Of Light and Darkness: The Prophecy_ primarily consistsof redeeming apparitions, ghosts of people who--in life--committed one of theseven deadly sins. The apparitions were summoned by a Dark Lord named Gar Hob.After 29 successful redemptions, you face Hob himself in a face-to-faceshowdown. _Of Light and Darkness_ poses some tricky problems and has one feature notusually seen in first-person role-playing games: players are running against aclock. Failure to redeem apparitions on a tight schedule brings on doomsdaywith alacrity. As a result of this deadline, the game has a repetitiveelement. Once you understand how to redeem apparitions--a fairly complexprocedure--the action moves swiftly. The level of difficulty does not remainstatic, however, because apparitions become increasingly dangerous. Though thestakes are high, the grim tone is leavened with stunning graphics and randomwitty touches. (The movement icon, for example, is a pair of mismatchedsocks.) Winning this game takes dedication and quick footwork, but players will enjoyracing the Clock of Judgement to the final confrontation with Hob. _--AlyxDellamonica_ Review Do you think that the adventure genre has gotten into a rut? Has findingobjects, combining them into unlikely contraptions, and using them inimplausible ways become a bit too routine? If so, Tribal Dreams' strikinglyoriginal Of Light and Darkness may be the game for you. Which is not to saythat it delivers a fully satisfying experience: It does not. But there is somuch creativity in the game - from the "real-time adventure" mechanics to theevocative design - that it is a must-see experience for most experiencedgameplayers, even if you decide not to work through to the end. You begin the game in a netherworld between the realms of light and dark,facing a demonic jack-in-the-box and listening to a court proceeding of somekind. It gets no less strange from here. Apparently, you are "The Chosen One"upon whom the world depends to rescue it from an end-of-millennium-stylecataclysm. You are dropped into a strange village of buildings and rooms, manyof which represent the seven deadly sins. Apocalypse and end-of-time talesfrom the full range of world cultures are quoted in some of the rooms. Youcollect variously colored orbs, pyramid-shaped portals, and odd artifacts likea necklace or saber. Apparitions appear in the form of floating death masks,each demanding its own artifact back from you. The specters represent 31 ofhistory's most notorious evil-doers, from Wa-No-Te, a pernicious womanizerfrom Mongolia (c. 4117 BC) to contemporary serial killer John Wayne Gacy.Occasionally, a colored flash will fill your screen, and at other times ahologram will appear near you in which a lovely lady named Angel (played byLolita Davidovich) is exchanging world-class obscure dialogue with Gar Hob,"The Dark Lord of the Seventh Millennium" (played by James Woods). The first puzzle in Of Light and Darkness is simply figuring out what the hellis going on! Several readings of the lengthy but evasive manual reveal a greatdeal of back story, but no concise, clear outline of what exactly all of thesethings mean, what you are to do with them, or how to do it. Most adventures dorequire that you figure out first what a puzzle wants you to do before youactually tackle it (a la Myst). But of Light and Darkness is just merciless inits obscurity. The manual reads as if it is missing key explanatory pages - orwas written by a post-structuralist literary critic. Only after commiseratingwith other befuddled players was it apparent to me that the gameplay is quitestraightforward. Your job is to redeem the apparitions in each of three levels. To do so, youmust find the apparition's signature object, deduce which is its deadly sin,and go to the appropriate room, luring the apparition in as well. Then youmust combine the object with the right blend of orb colors (according to whichwas the last color to flash in your face). When you activate the correctcombination in the right spot, you will redeem the apparition. Once you havedetermined the appropriate item, sin, and color for an apparition, you mustfigure out how to lure it to the right "sin room" for redemption. Using orbsand portals judiciously becomes a unique strategic element. Within an hour or two of play, however, OLAD begins to seem like a massive,elaborate game of Clue: matching the right weapon, room, and culprit. The newlevels (which really just open up new rooms in the same village setting) doadd some doors that need unlocking with specific items and toss in somedifferent-colored Orbs, but the gameplay remains the same throughout. Along the way, more pop-up videos remind you that Angel needs saving, if forno other reason than to spare her, and us, from further pretentiousconversations with James Woods. More spirits pour in throughout play, and youmust clear each of three levels in order to experience the endgame, a specialset of puzzles, in which you activate colors in a specific order, to defeatGar Hob. The "real time" label is misleading and shouldn't deter gamers who hate to berushed. You do have to redeem the apparitions before Armageddon overcomes you,but there are ways of extending that time limit, like flashing a group ofapparitions with white light. The gameplay is actually quite cerebral, butwith a pleasant jolt of adrenaline. And before playing each level in earnest,you can take a tour of the locations without running down the clock, whichhelps quite a bit. The masks of history's great hit men follow you about thevillage, blocking your way from some paths and demanding their stolen itemsback. At the third level of play, just running into one of these death masksis enough to blow your game. Graphically and mechanically, the game works beautifully. Artist Gil Bruvellends the village and its renditions of sinfulness an appropriate forebodingatmosphere as well as some humor. Pride is represented by a spotlit microphoneon an empty stage, while an animated face in Anger barks, "Go away!" Movementis point to point (similar to Zork Nemesis) with animated transitions and360-degree spinning at each location. Luckily, movement is fluid andresponsive, since you will need to do some sprints between locations. Once youget a handle on the rules, gameplay has a unique flow. You are darting betweenlocations to fight the clock but also have to keep track of what is currentlyin inventory as well as what needs to be done to redeem the next apparition. Of Light and Darkness is the sort of game that is so offbeat and uneven, soobviously a matter of individual taste, that even a merciless reviewer like meis timid about casting a summary judgment. I found the game ultimatelyunsatisfying because its many fine parts fight one another rather than cohereinto a single, compelling gameplay experience. The Clue-like puzzle solving isnovel and refreshing in an adventure game, but it becomes a tedious one-trickpony after the first level. Redeeming each apparition brings only itsdisappearance and a short speech. The televised storyline pops in on occasion,and the scripting and acting here are very good. But the gameplay and plotfeel as alienated from one another as the televised cutscenes make themappear. Neither seems to fit with the other. Especially out of place are some of the game's edutainment elements. You needto consult the manual's historical profiles regularly in order to identify theapparitions and get clues about the nature of their sins. This is one instancewhere having the manual online would have contributed to the flow of the game.And in each sin room an officious female voice pretty much kills the moodyatmosphere with quotes from religious prophecy. Too often, the game feels likeWhere in the Apocalypse Is Carmen Sandiego? And after seeing the cutscenes andsolving the puzzles, I was not at all convinced that this melange of religiousreferences and floating masks had anything of interest to say about the end oftime, evil, or much else. Once Gar Hob is banished in the final cutscene, acute clip ends the game, again breaking the game's dominant tone andundercutting any seriousness of purpose here. At its best, Of Light and Darkness will remind you of the classic TV seriesThe Prisoner. It can be artfully disorienting and promise hidden depths ofmeaning. But at its worst, it seems more like the second season of Twin Peaks,when the obscurity gets self-serving, and the payoff is meager compared withits initial pretensions. The unorthodox gameplay, while not varied, is veryrefreshing. As an experiment, Of Light and Darkness is fascinating. But as anengrossing game experience, the sum just isn't equal to its parts. _--SteveSmith_ --_Copyright (C)1998 GameSpot Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of GameSpot is prohibited._ -- _GameSpot Review_ Details: Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S. International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More Media: Video Game Discontinued by manufacturer: Yes Made with JoeLister Quality Products Have peace of mind knowing that your order will arrive original factory sealed packaging. That means that you'll have the full force of the manufacturer's warranty to protect your purchase. Fast and Free Shipping You're already purchasing the item. Why pay addition
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