SnarfQuest Tales Review: A Nostalgic Point-and-Click Adventure
I recently got the opportunity to check out a game which is being developed by Cellbloc Studios from Atlanta, GA, called SnarfQuest Tales. This may sound familiar to some, because it is an adventure series that has been around for years in magazine and tabletop format.
Created by Larry Elmore in the 1980s, the original SnarfQuest was a feature in the D&D magazine series Dragon. It became so popular that it spawned its own series of books and, eventually, a tabletop adventure game. Cellbloc Studios has now brought Snarf and his friends to life in this fun point-and-click adventure. It is currently in Early Access on Steam for PC, Mac, and Linux.
SnarfQuest Tales follows the adventures of a young male Zeetvah called Snarf. He decides to go on an adventure for fame and fortune, and the throne of his people. You start off questing alone, but along the way you are joined by other characters from the original series -- such as Aveeare, an armored wizard from space, and Telerie Windyarm, a human warrior woman. As with any good adventure game, there's also a whole host of characters to meet and interact with.
So, let's get down to talking about the game. To be honest, it is really good. The storyline is typical of a point-and-click, in that you have to find things and complete various puzzles to progress further. However, the characters you interact with all have their own comedic personalities, which makes even the dullest of quests (like finding someone their favorite food) giggle-worthy and fun to complete.
In addition to quests, you have puzzles to negotiate. I really like the addition of puzzles to the game. They tend to be ones that most people already know how to solve, even though they can get frustrating. Within the first set of quests, you have to complete a sliding block puzzle -- and boy did it infuriate me! I have a lot of patience but this kind of puzzle makes me want to throw things across the room! There are lots of other kinds of puzzles to keep you amused, so try your best to push through the bits that annoy you.
The artwork is relatively simple, given this day and age where detailed graphics are a "thing". But this certainly doesn't detract from the game -- in fact, it just adds to it. SnarfQuest has always been a cartoon so it doesn't need anything hyper-realistic or flashy. All of the characters from Elmore's original concept are in the game and have been created under his watchful eye, so nothing in the way that they look has been lost in the translation from paper to screen.
So far, the only gripe I have about the game is that sometimes the cursor wasn't very precise. It wasn't a huge issue most of the time, but it became especially prominent during a puzzle where I had to turn logs around while another zeetvah was trying to cross a lake. It was hard to get Snarf into a particular position to time his movements correctly and make sure the other character didn't get eaten by a crocodile.
Other than that, though, the game is stable and works exactly as intended.
SnarfQuest Tales is shaping up to be a really fun and entertaining game. I think it would not only appeal to those you are already familiar with the original series and D&D players, but it has the potential to interest anyone who enjoys "straight forward" point-and-click adventures. I would even go as far as saying that it would be suitable for younger teenagers upwards.
If you like the sound of the game, check out the trailer above. You can also visit the SnarfQuest Tales Steam store page to pick it up for yourself.