Six years ago, the cruelly-ignored Longest Journey helped pave the way for increasingly ambitious adventures, bringing complex characters and a sharp sense of storytelling to the hackneyed point-and-click genre. Sadly, in reworking the formula to appeal to more contemporary tastes, the sequel takes a step in the wrong direction.
While the leaden interface of old has given way to more familiar, Resident Evil-style 3D environments – and the game still boasts the rich, twisted plot that made the original a favourite with gamers in the know – this latest Journey is a crushing bore; unwieldly in-game cameras make it hard to follow the action, the fighting and stealth sequences feel clumsy compared to recent action titles, and the game lacks any challenge or sense of achievement as the puzzles are shockingly-simple.
Hardened Longest Journey fans will doubtless be charmed by the game’s colorful characters and protracted conversations, but Dreamfall misses its opportunity to seduce a new generation of gamers with its ingenious plot.
Reviewed by David McComb