Here is my complete review of Tex Murphy Overseer
Tex Murphy: Overseer is the fifth game to starring the 21 century man
living out his 1930's detective fantasy. This time, Tex is hired to
prove that the death of Doctor Carl Linsky wasn't a suicide. If this
sounds familiar its because Overseer is actually a remake of sorts.
The story is actually a flashback retelling of the first Tex Murphy
game, Mean Streets. Don't worry though. While most gamers never played
Mean Streets,if you have, Overseer's story does have some new twists.
Tweaking the pace and certain story elements not only has improve the
original story but created the most enjoyable Tex Murphy story todate.
Overseer is a game that tries to be about improvement. Access took the
Under a Killing Moon and The Pandora Directive interface and
completely overhauled it for Overseer. The results prove successful.
Gone are the black crowded screen with a small VR window or switched
larger windows and the chunky way movement and object mode were
divided. In its place is an attractive blue boarder with a sizable VR
room window occupies the center with hidden trays that pop up when up
move your pointer to any side of the screen. Movement now is
controlled completely by the keyboard so using objects and moving can
occur at the same time.
Improvements to the interface, while nice, aren't the improvements
that are grabbing headlines. Overseer is the first game to come out
that was design for DVD. If you have a DVD in your computer, the video
quality is amazing for a computer game. Most of the scenes easily top
the visual quality of TV Sci Fi shows and a select few have a
significant "wow" factor. I would like to stress most. Some scenes
look like they came from a student who couldn't figure out basic
lighting and camera angles. Keep in mind, even at its worse,
Overseer's DVD movies are better than anything seen before on a
computer game. Overseer also comes with a cd version in the same box.
CD video is on par with Wing Commander: Prophecy.
Another big improvement is the quality of the acting. Chris Jones (aka
Tex Murphy) appears to be doing well in his acting classes and
actually manages to convey realistic emotions besides those used
comedy. The player can "feel his pain" and it makes the trip
enjoyable. Chris's Costars are a cut above in quality the past two
games. I especially enjoyed Henry Darrow as the defeated Sonny
Fletcher. Of course Michael York steals every scene he appears .
As for bugs, it seems to be one of the most bug free adventure I've
played in a few years. Both Under a Killing Moon and The Pandora
Directive crashed quite often but I can honestly say that Overseer
didn't crash once during normal game play. Even the adventure game of
the year, Curse of Monkey Island managed to throw up a blue screen of
death from time to time.
Sadly, Overseer doesn't succeed on every level. Access tries to
increase the detail of the VR rooms. While the effort looks nice and
makes for great screen shots, actually moving is another matter. Most
VR rooms gave me a frame rate of 15-20fps. Some rooms crawled at
barely 5fps. Overseer only makes use of 3D cards that use the APG
standard and then support isn't all that great. People on the Internet
using apg cards, such as those based on RIVA 128 and others, are
experiencing poor frame rates and crashes. I found the game to be
playable even with a low frame rate on a Pentium 100. Just remember to
turn the details and window size down.
One thing that wasn't altered but I wish it was are the puzzles.
There are just way to many of them and there is little in the way of
variety. Anagrams and letter searches dominate Overseer and I was
rather sick of them back when I was playing Under a Killing Moon. I
much prefer character based interaction of games like Blade Runner.
Tex Murphy: Overseer is the best Tex Murphy adventure to date and is a
must play for adventure fans. One small disclaimer, if you can't stand
anything that isn't running at 30fps, even adventure game, you might
want to skip Overseer.My computerABS Pentium II 233 64 megs of ram 4.3 gig HD
4 meg PC Intergraph Intense PCI video card
Diamond Monster 3D (3DFX) 3D video card Sound Blaster 32 with 8 megs of ram
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