If you are a fan of adventure games, you’ll no doubt know the history of point-and click-adventures. Now we have the Telltale Games variety that get all the attention, but what of the traditional old school games style? Turns out that they giving up the fight just yet, as The Tale of Doris and the Dragon proves.
In The Tale of Doris and the Dragon you play the part of an elderly lady who appears in Purgatory with only her zimmer frame on hand. It’s not long before you meet a dragon who agrees to give you a hand. Acting like a help-desk like character you’ll be able to call him in to help you with certain problems, while also berating you for always calling on him.
It is the relationship between Doris and the Dragon which makes the game interesting from a story point of view. In a way Doris’ story is a simple one, she is travelling through the Underworld looking for her husband, while the overseers look on her adventure with interest. Doris of course is wiser than they seem to expect her to be, and with the dragon’s help in the first episode she’s making good progress.
When you look at the screenshots from The Tale of Doris and The Dragon: Episode 1, it is fair to say that the graphics aren’t that impressive. This is a design choice though, giving the game a retro look. The feel of the style is reminiscent of the original version of Another World and the user interface is similarly old school in style. It may make the game seem a little simplistic at first, but you’ll soon realise this isn’t the case.
What the first episode of The Tale of Doris and the Dragon is setting up is a retro style game that is full of charm. You can’t help but connect with Doris, and her dragon. There are plenty of other characters to interact with and the voice talents of Ben Simpson and Jamie Wood bring them to life. With a comedic edge that manages to be spot-on, this is what makes the game so interesting.
For those old enough to have played the old point-and-click adventures such as the iconic Lucasarts games you’ll know that many times comedy was the key, and this is what made them stand out. This game feels like it was born out of a love of these old-school classics. While this first episode feels short, it successfully sets up a game that gets your attention and entices you to look forward to what future episodes will bring.
While the whole retro-like game style is threatening to feel a little old (pun intended), this does not mean that it has outstayed its welcome just yet. The Tale of Doris and the Dragon: Episode 1 has introduced a charming little indie game that shows promise, especially for those looking for a game with a fun sense of humour. If you are pining for the old school point-and-click adventure, and want something that isn’t just a rehash or remake, then this may be what you are looking for.
The Tale of Doris and the Dragon: Episode 1 is available on PC, iOS, and Android now.