Am I the last person in the world to play The Blackwell Legacy
? I think I might be. For some reason I seem to own most of the Wadjet Eye games on both Steam and GOG, and in this case I played it on Steam so I could get the achievements. Why not? If there are achievements, I might as well go and get them, right?
The Blackwell Legacy is a fun little trifle - it runs a few hours long at most, with only five locations in total and just a handful of main puzzles (which did not stop me from getting stuck on one of them). It introduces the main characters who will, I gather, recur throughout the five Blackwell games: Rosangela Blackwell, a reluctantly-spirited medium, and her chatty ghosty sidekick, Joey Mallone. This first adventure is short and sweet, and involves uncovering the circumstances behind a student suicide at NYU.
I've been looking forward to starting these games, because in real life I know the folks who voice the two main characters: Rebecca Whittaker, who plays Rosa, and Abe Goldfarb, who plays Joey. It's really fun hearing them do the roles.
This is spare if satisfying point-and-click adventuring; you've got an inventory to combine items, and notebook in which you can combine clues. It's fairly thin, but it's also the first commercial release by Wadjet Eye, and dev Dave Gilbert is frank in his comments that it was a learning experience. There are two commentary tracks you can listen to while passing through the game a second time, if you like that sort of thing. One was recorded with the initial release of the game, and the second was laid down five years later on the occasion of a game update. That amounts to a lot of Dave Gilbert, but the comments are interesting, if repetitive. I quite enjoyed hearing him address what he regards as design faults in the game I have just played - things like information dumping, adventure-game logic, and details about recording voice-acting are all explored. Good fun.
My tiny list of games finished this year