Realms of the Haunting was a game I played fondly back in the late 90s on my old PC. It was created by Gremlin Interactive in 1996 and has remained in my mind since then as an inspirational piece of work. Despite technological advancement in gameplay this old haunted house game is a great piece of story-telling. I know the graphics are very much Doom-like but the atmospheric graphics and simplistic eerie keyboard music actually gave me fond memories of frequent late evening play. I got past many of the chapters but never actually finished it, there was one puzzle I couldn’t get past so I found that very frustrating.
Basically you play Adam Randall, a character who receives a mysterious parcel in the post from his father. You’re then visit a large house somewhere in Cornwall which is connected to him and you’re exposed to a multitude of magical worlds within. Adam Randall, a young and good-looking chap, rarely shows the brain patterns of today’s man but it’s a basically it’s a game of good versus evil. I’m currently watching a walkthrough on YouTube (composed of 60+ plus ten minutes sections) and it’s bringing back so many fun memories.
ROTH was ahead of its time in the late 1990s and surprisingly when I look at purchasing PS3 games now I hold ROTH up as a comparison. It’s amazing how many games actually don’t compare in terms of story-telling and gamer experience. Obviously I feel that the series of Unchartered, Resistance, Killzone and Mass Effect are games that push those very boundaries we need. You see, a game shouldn’t just be about great graphics and guns that go BANG!! It’s more about the quality of the story-telling and a good number of console games for me rarely do this.
If we take Unchartered, for example, all those small treasures one can find on secret ledges can be revolved 360 degrees, this is nothing new…it was done in Realms of the Haunting, but what a great way to show off newly found items. I understand why Unchartered 4 needs the Playstation 4, because gameplay evolution is important and as a player this is the sort of thing I want…although what I don’t want is to fork out £300 for another console when I feel that the PS3 is still a young machine.
Now Doom has been revamped and sold with the old PC games attached…I played them a couple of weeks ago. So how about someone making Realms of the Haunting for the modern console but with a new twist and new content or even a sequel game? And a second CD with original and new music scores? I’d be very interested in hearing about such a project…