|The game contains plenty of pop culture references including this one to Star Trek
- Reviewed by: Mark Goninon
- Developer: Dave Seaman (CaptainD) and R Riebau
- Publisher: Team Disaster
- Release Date: 12 Dec 2017
- Time played: 6.2 hours
What is it
Dave Seaman (aka CaptainD) is a British indie developer who has developed many indie games over the past few years as well as ebooks and audiobooks. Many of these are set in a sci-fi universe involving the exploits of a man with the nickname of "Captain Disaster".
Captain Disaster in Death has a Million Stomping Boots is a retro point 'n' click adventure developed in Adventure Game Studio (AGS). The game follows the exploits of the aforementioned spaceship captain, Captain Disaster. He receives this moniker thanks to his tendency to unintentionally create mayhem wherever he goes. The game spans three acts where you get to visit two different planets (Arcturus-1 and Proboscis Major) and your spaceship. The game is fully voiced and employs retro 320x200 resolution graphics, similar to classic point 'n' click adventures developed by Sierra during the late 80s and early 90s.
Captain Disaster in Death Has a Million Stomping Boots is not rated on Metacritic but it does have a "Positive" rating on Steam due to 100% of the 11 user reviews being positive.
Steam users praised the game for its humour, retro 90s point 'n' click adventure aesthetic, obscure solutions and likeable protagonist, however criticisms were made about low-quality audio and being a little short in terms of duration.
How I got it
I'm always in the mood to play point 'n' click adventures and Dave Seaman generously provided me with a review key to try out his game (so thank you for the review key Dave)! Favourite adventure games of mine include the Space Quest games by Sierra as well as the Monkey Island series by Lucasarts which I think share a lot in common with this game and they were probably strong inspirations for it.
|Captain Disaster apparently speaks with a Brummie accent
What I like:
Pop culture references
There are plenty of pop culture references in this game, especially if you're a fan of sci-fi as "Star Trek", "Star Wars", "Stargate" and "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" all get a mention and I'm only scraping the surface. The game Out Run even gets referenced which I thought was an awesome addition.
While I don't believe there are any professional voice actors in the game, it's fully voiced and it's probably the first point 'n' click adventure I've played where a character speaks with a "Brummie" accent (it actually turns out to be a very funny gag in the game).
I did end up using a walkthrough once but if I persevered a bit more, I may have been able to get by without using one. Despite the game looking like a point 'n' click adventure from years gone by and there being a funny easter egg that pokes fun at deaths in Sierra adventure games, the game is thankfully more forgiving than games of the previous era so I didn't lose any progress. Another aspect I like about modern point 'n' click adventures, like this one, is how the number of rooms to visit is limited once you approach the end of an act: this means you don't waste time exploring rooms which won't progress the plot in any way whatsoever.
Puzzles inspired by the classics
Most of the puzzles shouldn't be too much of an issue if you're a veteran of point 'n' click adventures. In fact, there's even a puzzle in Act II that seems heavily inspired by The Secret of Monkey Island. So if you've played classic Lucasarts adventures, you'll already have a head start when it comes to this game.
|I'm not a fan of the background art sometimes such as the bridge of Captain Disaster's ship
What I dislike:
Inconsistent art style
Sometimes the graphics look appealing like it does in the third act of the game (a Western Australian artist by the name of Ben Chandler created the art for this act) but sometimes the art is nothing more than passable. I can't be too critical though as this isn't a AAA title after all.
Still ended up pixel hunting (sort of)
Although Dave promises in the manual that there is no pixel hunting in the game, I came across a puzzle which could almost be considered one (i.e. trying to find something that blends so well with its surroundings, it's easy to miss) to the point I had to resort to a walkthrough in order to figure out what I was missing (and it's the only time I ever used one while playing the game). It turns out I didn't look closely enough in one area and I ended up wasting almost an hour figuring out what to do next. It was one of those situations where you knew what you had to do but the inventory item required wasn't in your possession yet.
No Steam Achievements and Trading Cards
It's not the be-all and end-all but there are no Steam Achievements or Steam Trading Cards to collect.
Score – 7/10 (Good)
Captain Disaster in Death Has a Million Stomping Boots isn't the prettiest retro point 'n' click adventure out there but it makes up for this with puzzles inspired by classic games that are also more forgiving. It also has plenty of pop culture references to keep any sci-fi or retro gaming nerd happy.
Is the game worth $12.95 AUD?: Yes, provided you're a fan of retro point 'n' click adventures, this is worth the asking price. At this price range though, you have tough competition from the likes of the remastered edition of The Secret of Monkey Island ($14.50) and Primordia (another AGS developed game) for a similar price. So, if you're still a bit uncertain, I recommend waiting until the game goes on sale.
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[ LINK: Captain Disaster Official Website ]