I think it was last week that I told myself I would absolutely stop reviewing adventure games. I’ve reviewed three in the last 14 posts. But I also told myself that I could still play them. Bad idea. I found “Out of Order,” an absolutely delicious free adventure game provided by Hungry Software and couldn’t resist writing about it.
In “Out of Order,” you play Hurford, an Arthur Dent-like character right down to the fact that he’s a British man who wanders around the game world in his dressing gown. Oh, and he was abducted by someone(s) called the Panel. Apparently, humans from the early 21st century aren’t the only victims of these kidnappings.
So, you, dear reader, must guide Hurford around, erm, wherever he is to uncover the sinister plot. Along the way, he comes into contact with many people and not-people. Whether or not the characters are human is largely irrelevant; they’re all pretty bizarre. Some things he learns to trust turn out to be his downfall. Sort of. I don’t think there’s any way to get stuck in this game.
How are the puzzles? Doable. The game tells you what you need to do, but many of the solutions require “adventure game logic.” Adventure game logic is the rather skewed form of logic that would never apply in the real world. For example, one puzzle requires you to feed glue to a stupid, stupid person. No, seriously. But when you get into the game, many of the solutions make sense. Probably the best thing about the puzzles is that they don’t take so long for you to solve that the storyline feels like it’s stopping and starting.
The graphics and the sound also add much to the atmosphere of the game. Although there are only three main areas (plus one stuck to the end) of the playable world, you get the feeling that there is so much more happening behind the scenes that you don’t really see. The sprites and areas are large and colorful, a plus in an off-kilter game like this one.
The only small complaint I had with “Out of Order” was the ending. I felt slightly unsatisfied by the way it ended, but it did make sense in the weird way the game worked.
“Out of Order” is a wonderful adventure game that will keep you occupied for quite awhile. And maybe make you laugh out loud. Maybe not.
“Out of Order” is a free download from Adventure Developers.