Leaving One By One 

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If you count your characters at the beginning of a game, the number left could decrease by the end especially if Agatha Christie is involved.

agatha christie and then there were none
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And Then There Were None is a point & click adventure game based on an Agatha Christie novel.  Developed by AWE Games and published by The Adventure Company, this title places you in the company of ten virtual strangers who have been invited to spend time on an isolated island that becomes cut off from the mainland following the combination of a bad storm and their boat being wrecked.  In some cases their stay should not last king.

As usual with games of this type, you can make adjustments to the gaming environment.  Volume levels can be set for background music and sound effects, including spoken dialogue, and any environmental sounds.  Screen brightness can be adjusted and features such as the use of captions, shadows, animated water, fog, rain and lightning can be turned on or off.  There is also an option to turn on anti-aliasing to make in-game characters more defined as you make your way through a series of deaths conducted by a third party.

Your role in this game is that of Patrick Narracott who, like the other characters in this murder mystery, is portrayed as a 3D characters capable of various actions including the ability to explore areas, walk-up stairs and be your on-screen presence.  He also has his own reasons for wanting to keep a watch on the other guests.  Keeping him company on this storm threatened island are Dr. Edward George Armstrong, William Henry Blore, Emily Caroline Brent, Vera Elizabeth Claythorne, Philip Lombard, General John Gordon Mackenzie, Anthony James Marston, Ethel Rogers, Thomas Rogers and Judge Lawrence John Wargrave.  Taking on the role of housekeeper is Ethel Rogers with her husband acting as a classic English butler for the soon-to-be departed.

With the various guests to check up on, many rooms spread over two floors and the constant threat of justice being delivered by a recording from a mysterious host as each guest is accused of murder, you have plenty to keep your character, Narracott, occupied.  To assist you, the game makes use of eleven different cursor to tackle specific tasks.  There are cursor for neutral control, backing out, speaking with another character (using spoken and printed dialogue), looking through a keyhole, use, walk/run. zoom in, tackle stairs, eavesdrop, open door and take an item.  It is just a pity there is no cursor to help victims escape the island.

Any items collected are stored in an inventory.  These items can be examined and, when necessary, combined to provide a necessary tool.  Information gathered can be stored in a journal with sections designated for general use, guests, docs and books.  How you put this information to good use is up to you.

However, despite your expertise at investigation, you are merely an observer as the other guests meet their fate in different ways as punishment for their individual crime.  I will leave it to you to discover what fate befell each guest and how elements such as a red herring, bear and a bumblebee were involved in their demise as the Ten Little Sailor Boys nursery rhyme plays out and a secret room is discovered within the island residence.

With photo-realistic scenes, animations and spoken dialogue conversation, the game does require a lengthy installation procedure as you feed in a pair of DVD disks containing the software.  The game requires a 850 MHz processor with 256MB of RAM and 1.5GB of hard disk space running Windows 98 and later.  I have seen this game listed on eBay priced at £3.45 for those wanting to delve into an Agatha Christie mystery.


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OverallAWE Games And Then There Were None rated 56 out of 100

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