The point & click adventure games of the 90’s return! Can you solve the murder in Thimbleweed Park?
The “point and click” genre of gaming (sometimes referred to as adventure games) were a staple part of PC gaming during the 1980s and 1990s.
In the beginning was the humble text adventure. You played the game by inputting simple commands such as “go east” or “unlock door with key”. Two examples would be Zork and The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy.
As home computers gained more power, companies made the same style of adventures but exchanged the text descriptions with graphical displays. One such company was Sierra On-Line who made games such as the King’s Quest, Space Quest and Leisure Suit Larry series.
The big change came when LucasArts developed the SCUMM engine (Script Creation Utility for Maniac Mansion) which allowed for the easier cross-platform creation of adventure games. This new system also placed the controlling verbs at the bottom of the screen.
LucasArt’s The Secret of Monkey Island
To perform an action you would click on the verb and then the relevant item in your inventory or game area. This is how the term “point and click” originated.
LucasArts created a whole slew of adventure games including the Secret of Monkey Island series, Maniac Mansion, Day of the Tentacle, The Dig, Full Throttle and much more.
However, since the late 1990s, the adventure game fell into decline as more powerful computers offered a new form of gaming, the first person shooter.
In November of 2014, the game designer, writer and programmer and creator of Maniac Mansion, Ron Gilbert, along with fellow ex-LucasArts games artist Gary Winnick, started a Kickstarter campaign to create a new adventure game entitled Thimbleweed Park.
The crowdfunding pledge was hugely successful and the finished game has just been released.
As you can see the game feels and plays just like a classic 1990’s “point and click” adventure game with the retro pixel art aesthetic.
The game currently has an impressive score of 85% (based on 38 reviews) over at Metacritic.
Thimbleweed Park is available now for Windows, Linux, Mac, Xbox One, iOS and Android with more platforms to follow.
You can find out more at Thimbleweed Park.