When Reviewing This game, I'd toyed with the idea of a deconstruction of the point-and-click genre (from the point of view of a vampire) or a pencil drawing about how the game made me feel. In the end, I settled on pointing out a good, a strange and two bad things about Dracula: Origin. A good thing are the puzzles. There is the usual collection of item-combination nonsense that can easily be solved by mindlessly dragging everything around until something happens, but Dracula: Origin has a pleasant bias towards logic puzzles and single-screen brain-teasers. This makes it feel a little like Perplex City cards, or the DS's Professor Leyton and the Curious Village.
One of the bad things about Dracula: Origin is the game's hidden workings. Event triggers, that are presumably there to stop scum walkthrough users, hamper genuine progress. To risk a minor spoiler, take the very early puzzle to open the shed. You have to scratch away the moss that covers a grave. You reveal the information that's useful and - hurray - you have the combination to the lock. But the option to unlock the shed doesn't appear until you scratch away enough moss to trigger an outburst from your protagonist In a genre where wits are pitted, this kind of failure of in-game logic is a rather large annoyance - and that's not the only time it happens.
A strange thing is the game's sexiness. Speaking to the developers, I was surprised to learn that they'd focussed on Dracula for his lurid winkle appeal - nearly half of their customers are female. Sure enough, the box art has the prolific monster reclining on a chair, idly tilting a glass of wine with a face that says, "I may not have a circulatory system, but I've still got fingers". Giris, may I point you to xtube.com?
The other bad things are the acting and the script. But not that bad. For a French story about Victorian England and Romanian folklore that takes you to Cairo, the game was almost guaranteed to be risible. That it manages to be enjoyably naff instead is something of an achievement.
Dracula: Origin is a good puzzler if you're prepared to not only outwit, but second guess the quirks of the development team. I won't slip into patronising cliche by starting a sentence with "if you enjoy erratic French-developed point-and-clicks," but I will say that I enjoyed it - but after some of the games I've enjoyed this month, sometimes I think I'd enjoy getting punched in the knees.
Download Dracula: Origin
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP