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Visit the Crossroad Bar
Elephant Games would like to invite you to an establishment known as Crossroads (this is not the almost forgotten television soap well known for its flaky scenery) but a building which often passes unnoticed by the casual public. It is a bar which could exist nowhere and everywhere. Its presence tends to remain low-key until it feels that a prospective client actual needs its facilities. Once you enter the bar, you will encounter Mistress Eve and become engulfed in the strange environments that make up this Hidden Object entitled Escaping the Dark.
Available in Collector’s Edition format, this game comes with a number of bonus items to add extra appeal. While some of these items are available immediately, others, such as a bonus chapter and Secret Room, require the main game to have been completed before access is granted.
Prior to entering this game you have the option to create profiles for different players, adjust various audio volume settings and the screen brightness in full or wide screen mode with special effects. The game gives a choice of difficulty levels as you select from Casual, Advanced, Hardcore or Custom settings to suit your skill level.
A fairly standard arrangement of tools is provided to help complete the game. Positioned centrally at the base of the screen is your Inventory which can be locked in place or allowed to disappear when it is not required. To the left of the Inventory are icons giving access to a Map feature and the current Task. Located to the right of the Inventory are Strategy Guide and Hint features. Tucked up in the top left corner of the screen is an icon that will reveal the state of the character traits of other figures in the game.
Following an opening visit to a Therapy Centre, you will undergo a test by selecting which images you find threatening and frightening, before the game starts in earnest. The data gathered from the image selecting procedure will help play a part as you enter the Crossroads bar in your role as Sterling Fisher. On meeting the bartender, Mistress Eve, you are challenged to play a series of games based on the knowledge gained from your responses to the earlier test sequence.
In each of the games that follow you will take on a different persona and will need to solve a problem that has a strong Horror element to it. Your challenges will start as you attempt to avoid monsters and help rescue a ghost from its fate. Later you will need to discover who is responsible for sending phone messages that predict the death of the recipient. Later, transported to a film set, you will need to navigate a nightmarish situation before being returned to the Crossroads bar and are set a final challenge by Mistress Eve.
During each game within a game, you will encounter ghostly figures that show more actual life rather than the rather static living characters who communicate with spoken and printed text dialogue. Mixed in with the search and find action making up this game will be a variety of mini game puzzles and a variety of Hidden Object scenes that sometimes require that certain items will need to be used within the current scene.
While a little bitty or fragmented, I enjoyed playing this game. Crossroads – Escaping the Dark CE can be downloaded from Gamehouse.com or Big Fish Games priced at $19.99 or £15.68. The game requires a 2.5 GHz processor with 1024MB of RAM and 1.35GB of hard disk space running Windows 7 and later.
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