[REVIEW] The Last Door: Collector’s Edition
By Dan Spence on May 13th 2015
The Last Door is an episodic 2D point-and-click adventure/horror game made by Spanish developers: The Game Kitchen. The game takes place in a Lovecraft-esque version of Victorian England. The collector’s edition contains all of the episodes from the game’s first season as well as a number of extras and frankly, it’s fair to say that I’m impressed.
The first episode begins with something of a cold open, with the player taking control of a (currently) unnamed character who the player must guide through the unskippable process of his own suicide.
This is a fantastic opening to the game.
The opening scene imparts a superb sense of dread. Each step that makes up the process of the man’s suicide is interspersed with lines from his suicide note, concluding with his name once the morbid act is done. The player has no other choice than to cause this man’s suicide (the game cannot continue otherwise). After the first couple of steps, you begin to realize exactly what it is that is going on; which needless to say, serves to make the player more and more reluctant to continue on with each subsequent step.
After the opening sequence the game begins proper. We are introduced to Jeremiah Devitt; the game’s primary protagonist and school-friend of Anthony Beechworth (the man that we just helped to commit suicide). Jeremiah has just received a letter from Anthony containing nothing but the latin sentence “videte ne quis sciat” (in English: “see that no one knows”). The message is enough to make Jeremiah believe that something terrible must have happened to his friend so he promptly sets out to visit Anthony’s home.
The gameplay is a fairly standard point-and-click affair. The cursor lights up as you mouse over interactive objects to ensure that you don’t miss anything while navigating Jeremiah’s surroundings.
The puzzles are fairly simple and no great stretch of the imagination is required to solve them (the overly-obscure puzzles of games like the Monkey Island series are nowhere to be seen here). Don’t let the low difficulty of The Last Door’s puzzles put you off however, as it’s almost as if they’re left intentionally easy: a simple task to accomplish while you attempt to traverse the obstacles that are the game’s more unnerving sections.
Graphically the game looks great, with a pixel-art style that seems to evoke an almost painting-like quality. Impressively, this simplified art style does nothing to detract from the game’s constant low-level terror.
The Last Door’s greatest feature however, is the fact that it positively oozes atmosphere. The game does all it can to create a considerable sense of dread: whether through its simple yet creepy visuals or through its evocative, orchestral soundtrack. Haunting at times and menacing at others, truly it is this soundtrack that is the star of the show as far as the game’s atmosphere is concerned.
The game’s story is blatantly inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft and does nothing to hide it; using tales of sinister (possibly otherworldly) goings on in Victorian England to great effect while pastiching the great writer’s macabre works. The episodes contained within the collector’s edition sport an intriguing story with a few interesting twists and turns thrown in for good measure; making the overall experience scary and daunting, yet absorbing enough that you’ll want to carry on regardless.
The game’s extras are made up of extra scenes, laid out somewhat similarly to the opening sections of each episode (generally in a single room, performing a simple task that only lasts a minute or so) with the player in control of a character who is not directly involved with the main story: one takes place at a morgue and involves carrying out an autopsy, another takes place during another character’s wake. These scenes – while not especially long – all serve to enrich the story and it’s characters through the addition of numerous minor details.
Overall, The Last Door: Collector’s Edition is an excellent indie horror experience with a fantastic atmosphere and an interesting story (an experience that I enjoyed enough to convince me to donate to its kickstarter campaign!) If you’re a fan of old-fashioned point-and-click games, or indie horror games then The Last Door is definitely worth a look.
The Last Door is RECOMMENDED
Posted on May 13, 2015, in Indie Games, PC Games, Reviews, Smartphone Games and tagged Game Reviews, games, gaming, horror games, indie games, point-and-click, Reviews, the game kitchen, the last door, video game reviews, video games. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.