This is the third cartoon puzzle-game featuring Coktel's mad-cap goblins. In it they must find their way out of a series of screens by making use of available objects in typical graphic adventure fashion. While Gobliiins had three of the little sods, and Gobliins 2 had just two of them, Goblins 3, you will not be surprised to learn, has just the one. He is Blount, a journalist who sets out to interview two rival royals. Unfortunately, things don't go quite according to plan and Blount gets caught up in a mystery, soon facing several challenging problems, not the least of which is that he has become a werewolf and assumes a canine form at each full moon.
Although he has no goblin companions, Blount is not left to do all the puzzling alone. Throughout his journey, he makes all sorts of friends from Chump, a somewhat ebullient parrot, to Bizoo, a small flea frozen into a glacier. Completion of many of the puzzles requires close co-operation with these comrades, although they often simply provide comic relief. Take Ooya the magician, for instance, who amuses himself by making sheep appear from thin air.
For the first couple of levels the gameplay is confined to single screens, as was the case in the first two games, but you are soon thrust into the world of multi-screen puzzle-solving. Unlike many other adventure games, it is pretty obvious when you get part of the puzzle right, so you won't be left wondering whether putting the axe in the cooking pot was entirely the right thing to do.
A new feature is that your objective for each puzzle can be called up at any time. When this fails to get the old grey matter working, at least you have five jokers to play. A joker doesn't give you subtle hints on how to complete a screen, it tells you exactly how to do it from beginning to end. A word of warning - you only have five jokers for the whole game, so don't give up until your brain has fallen out of your head.
The graphics and bouncy soundtrack are pretty identical to the previous two games, although Goblins 3 has more additional animation and cut scenes, which are amusing at first but can tend to get a bit tedious after you've seen them for the tenth time. An improved interface, larger locations and slightly more logical problems make for less frustration and ensure that Goblins 3 is easily the best of the Goblins games.
Download Goblins 3
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
Rod serling once said 'No humour is so sweet as the unintentional'. He could quite easily have said this about a particular gaffe that occurs in Goblins 3. Heaven forbid I should lapse into the toiletry humour that is this country's national pastime, but the mention of, and I quote, 'gazing into Karina's magic knob,' still elicits a giggle and a smile in my household. It's sad I know, but you'll forgive a dying man his eccentricities. This remains the only blemish in Coktel Vision's otherwise highly recommendable comedy adventure. We gave a fair account of the game's plot and construction in last month's floppy-based review, so I shall instead reveal what the shiny cd-rom has to offer and whether it justifies an extra ten quid.
Which, of course, it doesn't. No game justifies 50 pounds, but there seems to be little I can do about such managerial decisions short of terrorism (but, alas, I do not posses ownership of a large enough balaclava for such measures). You can. You can refuse to buy them. But that would then go against the opinions of the rest of this review which you will discover tells you that Goblins 3 is a charmingly delightful game that deserves sackfuls of praise.
For one thing, it is genuinely funny. Of course humour is a subjective thing, but I laughed out loud on a fairly regular basis just because of the animations, the clever puzzle solutions that would only work in a cartoon, and the sheer excellence of the whole presentation. It's a long time since I did that with game. Blue Force was the last but I was laughing at it, not with it.
Okay, it hardly does anything innovative with the cd-rom. A couple of polished animations here, some enhanced music and sound effects there, and speech instead of text. They're all minor cosmetic changes and you'd be better off saving the ten sterlings and buying the floppy versions. Speech isn't everything. It's a shame. This version could have been highly enhanced, with completely new scenes, greater interactivity between characters, even just more animations would have done the trick.
No matter. I'm going to rate it highly simply for the quality of the adventure that's already there: irreverence, lunacy and large round eyes on small woodland creatures - the perfect cartoon really. Only a smart-alec dog and a homicidal rabbit could be better and what are the odds on something as bizarre as that happening?