Castle Dracula is a point and click indie game created by the folks at Gondfire Productions Inc Although on their website I cannot seem to find where to purchase the game, but it can be purchased in a bundle with 3 other games from Indiebundle at a great price of $7 (or $5 if you want the 3 game bundle, which is one less game).
This game is being reviewed on PC, but mobile versions are also available from the app store.
Point and click games always need a good story, this is where they need to excel otherwise there is no point in playing them. Who wants to play a point and click game when the story is tedious and you are just clicking everything in hope that you die and you can press the exit button?
In Castle Dracula, your pregnant wife has been abducted by Dracula’s minions and taken to his Castle at the top of the hill. The story seems pretty generic from a first glance, and it is – until you start fighting very random creatures such as Medusa (Why is she even there?!) The story was interesting, I found myself completing it one sitting and it ended very well. I do not want to give the ending away, but it seems there is a lot more to come – I’m not sure if this is going to be an episodic adventure or not, but I will definitely be playing the next installment just to see what is going to happen – it surprised me that much.
In this game, you need to point and click at things (Who knew?) The pointing and clicking system needs a lot of work, which was very disappointing for a game that is fundamentally designed to do that. I often found myself knowing what I need to do, but it just didn’t seem to register my click, so I thought I was doing something wrong and tried something else.
Using items is a nightmare, you can see the item in your inventory at the bottom of the screen, and you need to drag the item onto the place you need it – but this just doesn’t work as I hoped. If you move your mouse more than 1cms (Centimeter a second) you will leave behind the item and it will just hover in the place you left it behind on the screen, then when you try and move it again, you leave it behind again! I found myself getting very irritated, most of the game I spent trying to move items into where they needed to be.
The walking system can also become an annoyance . When you want to move rooms, you need to click the ‘walk’ button at the top, then click where you want to go – but every time you move room, you need to press the walk button again before you can move on. If you are quickly trying to move through a variety of rooms then this will quickly become a chore
The puzzles were great. The developers really put some time into this. Some puzzles were a tad hard, but not too hard where I found myself giving up to a walk through – I just had to sit there, think a little and I could do it. The puzzles ranged from finding objects to use in a certain sequence, combining things and selecting the correct item without falling into a devious trap.
Often enough I found a trap and was killed, this will happen to most people as some traps were silly, others I just didn’t see the clues for it. Thankfully, If you die, you stay in the exact same place.
I hope the puzzles stay as challenging in the next game, and please don’t make it too hard for me… please.
The artwork in this game was gorgeous, as I am not an artist I cannot say how long that much have took to do, but it looked wonderful. The atmosphere was really shown just through the art work. Most of the game I just spend admiring it
I do get a little jealous of people who can design like that, it is a gift I wish I had, but can never be bothered to try and improve.
The soundtrack on this game is very lacking, there is so much the developers could have added here, music wise, to improve the atmosphere of the game. I played the game from start to finish and I’m pretty sure I only heard one song the entire game.
The voice work was brilliant, the cast could have been only 2 people and I could not have told the difference – however many people there work doing the voice work in this game, they all did a very good job adding to the atmosphere and really engrossing me into the game.
For only $7, you can get this game and a few other point and click adventures, but don’t just let the cheap price tag be the only reason to play this game. Castle Dracula has fantastic voice work topped with mesmerising at work that will just leave you astounded for the sheer time the developers had to have put in. Slightly annoying bugs, but the pro’s definitely outweigh the cons. I look forward to playing the next installment of Castle Dracula.