The Room: Old Sins

A CREEPY ROOM-ES­CAPE PUZZLE GAME.

TechLife Australia - - DISCOVER - [ CRAIG GRANNELL & CARMEL SEALEY ]

THE ROOM: OLD Sins is a game for fans of es­cape rooms. The ti­tle finds you in­ves­ti­gat­ing the dis­ap­pear­ance of an en­gi­neer and his ‘high-so­ci­ety’ wife, and the trail leads you to a spooky at­tic — never a good sign. On get­ting the lights work­ing, you see a strange and prom­i­nent doll­house, which then sucks you inside. Just a nor­mal day at the of­fice...

You dis­cover the toy is, in fact, a full re­con­struc­tion of a man­sion, with a side or­der of Love­craftian hor­ror. Un­rav­el­ling the mys­tery at the heart of the game and its im­pos­si­ble world then hap­pens by way of de­vi­ous, com­plex, tac­tile logic puz­zles.

Of course, if you’ve played The Room from 2002 and the others in the se­ries ( The Room Two and The Room Three), you’ll know all this al­ready. If you haven’t (that was the boat we were in, by the way), grab Old Sins im­me­di­ately — and then check out its pre­de­ces­sors, too. They’re some of the finest games on the mo­bile plat­form. While The Room Three may have de­vi­ated a lit­tle away from what made those orig­i­nal two games amaz­ing, Old Sins ap­pears to want to steer the se­ries back on track. (Al­though, we would like to men­tion that the ti­tles aren’t ac­tu­ally con­nected by story, just by theme.)

Old Sins looks and sounds great, and mov­ing around is swift — there’s none of the dull trudg­ing you find in the likes of Myst. The touch con­trols are pretty in­tu­itive: you con­trol the cam­era by drag­ging your fin­ger across the screen, in­ter­act with ob­jects by dou­ble-tap­ping, and zoom­ing in and out is su­per easy. This all com­bines to give you a real sense of, well, re­al­ism — that you’re in­ter­act­ing with real ob­jects on your hunt for the next bread crumb of ev­i­dence in your in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

We found our­selves be­com­ing dis­tracted mul­ti­ple times, though, and this is by no means a bad thing. The puz­zles will have you as hooked with this game as the story it­self, mean­ing you may re­alise you’re play­ing in to the wee hours of the morn­ing, or miss­ing your stop on the train jour­ney home. You some­times for­get that you’re ac­tu­ally in­ter­act­ing with a doll­house and not a full-sized en­vi­ron­ment, which speaks vol­umes for the de­tail and over­all game de­sign.

There’s an in­tri­cate in­ven­tory sys­tem, which seems a bit over­whelm­ing at first when the items keep stack­ing up, but you’ll soon get the hang of it. And don’t for­get the use­ful hint sys­tem, al­though you will prob­a­bly rarely use it, if at all. You’ll want to use those lit­tle grey cells on these puz­zles, as fig­ur­ing them out your­self is such a thrill.

At the end of the day, we’re glad that Old Sins is bring­ing The Room se­ries back on track and would def­i­nitely rec­om­mend it.

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