Reviewed by Geoff Elbo

          Computer        Graphics        Memory          Disk Space
Minimum                   256 VGA         640K RAM        50K/saved game
Max/Rec.   386

Control: Mouse
  Sound: Soundblaster/compatible for voice |Adlib, Roland, and PC Speaker
         also supported
  Notes: CD-Rom required, supports MSCDEX 2.1 and above

Reviewed version      on: 1x & 2x CD-ROMs in 386/33 box
     Reviewer recommends: 2x CD-ROM drive

In the advertising for INDIANA JONES AND THE FATE OF ATLANTIS (FOA), LucasArts could have used a tag line like "Indy's at it again, and this time he talks!" For those who aren't familiar with this game, Indy uncovers a Nazi plot to find the lost city of Atlantis, to obtain a very special metal. In this review, I'll examine the benefits of "Talkies", games where there is no dialogue to read, because it has all been recorded.

Yes, our favorite archeologist is on the trail of adventure, romance, and intrigue, much the same way he was in the disk version of this game. There is something missing, in the disk version, that can only be experienced on the CD-ROM version. It is texture, ambiance, substance. The combination of music, sounds and listening to everyone's voice enhances the gaming experience, bringing it to a new level. Each character you meet during the course of the adventure has his/her own speech patterns, accents and style. Voice casting, much like any animated movie, must convey some sense of the character, particularly when it is one we know so well. Doug Lee, who provides the voice for Indy, does a credible job interpreting the hero. We also meet Sophia, an old flame of Indy's. When Indy says "You know, Marcus, the coldest year of my life was the one I spent in Iceland with Sophia", you hear the regret in his voice, hear the pain.

Hearing the characters in your game speak for the first time must be akin to going from silent to talking movies. This format also raises the use of music a notch, something REBEL ASSAULT takes even further. Music, while gaming, helps to create a mood, which leans toward more suspension of "Gee, I'm playing a game on a computer" to "Wow, Indy better watch it or he's going to get hurt!" And the music here is not just a few short synthesized bars run repeatedly, but a good soundtrack, changing in tempo as you move from place to place.

The only way to really understand what I say here is to experience it for yourself. Once your do, though, you will find some level of disappointment in games that don't have full talking. As people experience the texture voice and great music bring to a game, it will become the rule, rather than the exception.

This review is Copyright (C) 1993 by Geoffrey S. Elbo for Game Bytes Magazine. All rights reserved.