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About the product
- Five highly detailed worlds entice you with over 65 innovative puzzles
- Spectacular production value - Hollywood actors, dramatic live-action video, hypnotic ambient music and dazzling special effects
- Directed by live action director, Joe Napolitano of X-Files and Murder One fame
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In a desolate corner of the Underground Empire, an evil demon torments the Land. Evil rules the Forbidden Lands. Here, the souls of the Empire’s Great Alchemists lie in perpetual hell…at the hands of the Nemesis. Now the forces of the Underground beckon you to uncover the mystery behind the Nemesis’ curse…Travel through five mind-bending worlds to discover the ancient secret of Alchemy that will free the trapped souls from evil’s grip….Before the Nemesis imprisons you with the others…For eternity. Do you dare enter the Forbidden Lands?
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> Neat story
> Great, serious atmosphere
> Straightforward puzzle solving
> At times, too easy
> Runs poorly on modern computers (too fast)
Modern processors cause the game to run far too quickly. You can't use the mouse to turn the player character. Instead, you must use the keyboard, which is much slower. Additionally, there are 2 brief moments in the game (bell tower & end game) that require you to time a mouse-click during a timed sequence. Modern computers will process this sequence in less than 1/100th of second, thus breaking the game. The only way to slow the sequence down enough to see the animation is to download a program that slows your CPU (I used CPU Killer). Even then, I found it difficult to time the mouse-clicks.
The game is about four alchemists who were trying to find the secret to immortality but were murdered by someone that they refer to as 'the nemesis'. Their spirits plead with you to restore their symbols and elements and bring them back to life so that they can complete their work and create the secret to immortality.
But things are not as they seem. As you travel through the realms of each of the alchemists you start to learn about their secrets and the true tale of how they met their fates. Its a story of love, a story of manipulation, a story of betrayal, and a story of perserverence. In my book, THAT is the kind of story that makes for a wonderful adventure.
True, its much darker than one expects from the Zork genre. There are no jokes about the Magician's guild, no throck spells or hunguses to turn inside-out, but it is still an amazingly deep and unique adventure game. If you get a chance to play this, please do! You won't regret it.
Nemesis, however, is much more than an amusement. It provides a serious storyline with well acted movie clips; graphics that were stunning when the game was released, and are still not half bad a few years later; puzzles that will tie your brain in knots, and have you giggling maniacally once you see that the solution was staring you in the face; a gorgeous soundtrack; and stereo environmental sound, so that if you dim the lights and wear headphones, you feel truly immersed in this fictional world.
As a bonus, the creators have done serious research into their source materials. The "alchemy" presented in the game is entirely based on real, historical sources. Most of the artwork and diagrams on walls and in books throughout the game are scans of real-world documents. If you're an esoterica history buff like me, this will add greatly to your enjoyment of the game. If you like Umberto Eco, especially _Foucault's Pendulum_, then this game is for you. (And if you haven't read Umberto Eco... what's wrong with you?! You're at Amazon! Go look him up!)
Enough talk. Go play it already!
ZN took the Myst template and expanded on it. This was the first game (as I recall) to give you a 360 view at each node. You could pan all the way around to see everything. This innovation provided a level of immersion that really draws you in. This was one corner stone to this games success.
As another reviewer noted, this is not even close to a typical Zork game. This game has some very dark themes and tones. This was another reason I was draw into it. It was unexpected. The layout of the story and separation of "worlds" felt right.
Game play was terrific. There were a few extremely difficult puzzles to solve, but overall its difficulty was just right. The puzzles were themed and mostly made sense as they were presented.
For me, the audio (music) in the game is what was perhaps the most memorable. It could be that it hit just the right note for me at my age or it really just worked well with the ambiance, allowing me deeper immersion.
I still hold on to the discs to this day, even though it is not able to run on any of my machines any longer.
I measure all other games in this genre against this one.