UNINVITED / Kemco / NES





The Macventure games (this one, Shadowgate and Deja Vu) are so called because they started life on the Macintosh before getting Amiga and PC ports. But the original versions were anemic black-and-white affairs with no sound, and when Japan-based Kemco licensed them for the NES they gave them a full spiffing up for the more casual console audience with color graphics, soundtracks and a re-write of the scripts.





Kemco also had to twiddle around with the structure of the games and make them a little more linear and confining/easy than the originals. I've never played the originals so I don't know if this was entirely their devices, but the challenge on the NES mostly stemmed from a lot of unfair, out-of-nowhere deaths. Uninvited actually came out in the middle of the pack originally, but it was the last one that Kemco ported, and they seem to have learned some lessons from the previous two games -- it really seems the best constructed of the three, with very few unfair deaths, a much faster interface and less obtuse puzzles.





Though the cursor is no longer sluggish and the game just feels a hell of a lot more well-thought-out, it hasn't lost the appealing qualities of the previous ports -- decently written but goofy flavor text, enough grim deaths in store to keep you on your toes and give the environment a tense feel, and a nifty soundtrack that sometimes features surprisingly hot beats.





Really, the only major complaint to levy against this one is that it's too short. Players who know exactly what they're doing and mash all the text can complete it in about 20 minutes. There's a rather slim selection of adventure games on the NES though, and this is one of the best of the bunch, if not the best. It's certainly technically the best of the Macventure ports, though it doesn't have quite the panache or memorable moments of the other two.





Videos :

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