Possibly A Great Game…Ten Years Ago
The original Adam’s Venture released as an episodic series back in 2009 that came out with a new episode every year until 2012. All three chapters were then released as a compilation in 2015 for the PS3. Vertigo Games, and publisher Soedesco, have decided to remake the game for the current generation of platforms. Unfortunately, Adam’s Venture: Origins “remake” still appears like it should have been made about a decade ago.
Adam’s Venture: Origins is described as a reboot to the series as it takes a non-violent approach to the action/adventure genre. Adam Venture is the son of a researcher that finds clues that lead him, and his trusted accomplice, Evelyn Appleby to Jerusalem in a race to discover the treasure first. A corporate entity, named the Clairvaux Company, is looking to use the caves within the temple to claim lives that will lead to civil unrest, and eventually war that will help the Clairvaux Co. make a profit from the weapons that they will sell. Throughout the game, you will come across puzzles that will need to be solved, and obstacles that will need to be overcome in order to advance.
Speaking of which, the puzzles aren’t hard if you are an adult, and even if you don’t want to overthink them you can just use the trial and error method to solve them. The puzzles come into play immediately as you have to solve puzzles inside your father’s mansion just to open up a lock to the library by moving pictures around. Afterwards, you have to solve a ladder puzzle just to get to a book from a book case to return to your father’s study. The puzzles don’t make too much sense a lot of the time given the situations you are in.
When I read the above paragraph above to myself, I realize that I may be making this game sound better than it is. This is a very one dimensional game in terms of storytelling; go here to learn this, and move on the next area with no real story to tell in-between the levels, rinse and then repeat. In fact, the real plot doesn’t unfold until the next to last area in the game. The story progression is lazily written, as are the character’s dialogue throughout.
What immediately needs to be addressed in the games look and build. The game appears as if it belongs in a late PlayStation 2 or original Xbox catalog. The faces of the characters are so stoic, and the voices do not compliment the look of the them either. It reminded me of the older Hitman games, as the NPC’s move so robotically. The only character to have any fluid movement is Adam Venture, which is a relief as the game probably would have been harder to play if he wasn’t.
The game has a lot of bugs, or at least the console version does. You will run into invisible walls, parts of the character’s body will get stuck in a rock formation, and even a simple command like jumping is a chore. Seriously, I don’t know how many times it took for my character to jump onto a low ledge; instead I just hopped in place until the game decided it was going to let me get on top. The motions aren’t very fluid either as I couldn’t just jump onto a high ledge, but instead I had to walk up to the ledge, wait a moment, and then press the jump button.
Perhaps I am spoiled, but going by the press kit this game was made for current gen, but there isn’t a shred of evidence to prove that. The only thing that is good, at best, is the surroundings (buildings, tents, and caves). The sound editing is another issue with the issue being that it’s hardly there. During much of the game, you are separated from Evelyn with your only means of communications is by using a radio. Logic would dictate that is you want to give the effect of a radio conversation, you may want to put in a sound filter, or something to that effect, instead of allowing it to sound like she is talking right next to you.
I may have given the script the benefit of the doubt if the voice directing wasn’t so awful, or the voice acting itself. Adam Venture is the most chauvinistic, obnoxious adventure character I have ever come across, and when he isn’t being sexist he is probably having delusions of grandeur. What made this infuriating was that his partner, Evelyn, just takes it most of the time until over half way through the game where she decides to run away in anger, and when she is found, it is all swept under the rug. The lines that are delivered are either over-the-top, or very underplayed. The only thing that could justify these cartoonish voices throughout the game is if it the game was made for kids primarily, but I doubt it as the puzzles are little advanced for kids. The main villain’s voice is especially bad as his voice prompted an old memory of movie footage that showed a curly mustached man tying a woman to the train tracks.
Adam’s Venture, as bad as most of its parts are, is strangely addicting though. What kept me playing is the continuous progression I felt throughout. The game itself take 4-5 hours to complete, and if you are a trophy/achievement hunter, Adam Venture: Origins is one the easiest to complete as you are able to go back to the areas after you complete the campaign to do those obscure tasks.
Adam’s Venture: Origins didn’t have to be a blockbuster, triple-A title, it just had to work correctly and have voice directing and a sound effects staff that really cared about the details that make an interesting game. This game is not meant for today’s gamer. Come to think of it, it’s barely a game for modern gamers a decade ago. The puzzles have their moments, but there is no real challenge to it as you play as one of the most narcissistic heroes to date. While that may have been the point to the character, the voice just didn’t match. You will spend around forty dollars on a game that will take you maybe half of a day to play. The only saving grace to that is if you don’t mind spending money for one of the easiest Platinum Trophy or that perfect Achievement score.
Final Verdict: 1.5/5
Available on: Xbox One, PS4 (Reviewed), PC; Publisher: SOEDESCO; Developer: Vertigo Games; Players: 1; Released: April 1st, 2016 ; ESRB: E for Everyone ; MSRP: $39.99
Full disclosure: This review is based on a review copy of Adam’s Venture: Origins given to HeyPoorPlayer by the publisher.