Dracula Origin   - Review

Dracula Origin
Ages: Teen

Don't pay attention to that sultry, seductive image of Dracula on the box cover. This is a Bram Stoker story, not Anne Rice. You will be taking the role of the stern prelate-like Van Helsing on the trail of Dracula and see very little of Dracula, although Van Helsing often "senses" his presence.

The story takes place upon the receipt of Harker's letter portending his own doom. It is now Van Helsing's job to protect Mina. He instructs her to go out and buy garlic and place it at all the windows and then he goes off in search of Dracula. Does he protect Mina? Noooo - he is completely engrossed in the wild bat chase.

But the chase is engrossing, leading the player from one locked door, secret room, pit, puzzle to another. The puzzles are intelligent and appropriate to the story. It is not overly gruesome, leaving the bloody stains and implements up to your imagination. You begin at Van Helsing's London flat but the chase quickly takes you to a macabre cemetery where it is necessary to break into a mausoleum (haven't you always wanted to do this?) to find an underground passage to Dracula's even more foreboding mansion. The graphics are skillfully used to convey the sense of dread and horror. There is an entire adventure in Cairo having to do with camels, a Coptic priest, the Cairo museum, a tomb, more traps, skeletons, ancient texts and more puzzles. Then onto Vienna and eventually to Transylvania, with puzzles providing the impetus that moves the story along.

There are many characters that you will encounter and each one adds a piece to the story making the game very verbose. You read about Dracula's origin as the warrior, ruler Vlad III, his rejection by the object of his adoration. His search to bring her back from the dead - which if it works, will bring a plague of risen dead upon the earth.

I am surprised - and pleased that so much attention was paid to the secondary characters, Their faces are expressive, gestures natural and the voices different and appropriate - which makes some of the settings feel like a scenes from a movie. A most enjoyable adventure - tho lacking in romance. Disclosure: I always root for the vampire.

Fun Factor: All the requisites for a good vampire adventure
Female Factor: Mina is just a blood vessel. There are a couple of formidable female vampires - but they don't count.
Player Friendly: Easy to play

Reviewed by: Editor - 06/08

  • Dracula Origin
  • © The Adventure Company / frogwares
  • Platform(s): WVISTA XP
  • To Order: Win http://www.amazon.com/ $18.99