04 April 2011

Review: Myst & Riven on IOS

I should begin by stating up front I am not a gamer. I don’t really like 90% of the games out there on principal. I don’t want to shoot, kill, blow up etc etc things on my computer, so my reviews should be taken in that light.

Now to Myst and Riven- the sequel to Myst on iphone/ipod. THESE are the types of games I love to play. Beautifully rendered, challenging, no clock running out when you want to take your time to look at something or figure something out. They are as much about exploring a fascinating world as they are about «winning» the game. Now available in IOS, these games are a welcome sight on my ipod touch.

For those who don’t know: Myst finds you on a mysterious island where you solve puzzles and discover clues to find «Linking Books» to other islands/worlds and to progress the story. Riven is a much more elaborate variation on this theme with some stunning animations integrated into the gameplay.

If you loved the Myst series, you still will. They have been long absent from the MAC format for no reason I can fathom that makes sense. I only hope these app game versions sell well enough to do the rest of the series (which I believe is owned by more than one company now so it might be a long time working all that out). Later games in the series have been out on the Steam gaming platform, but not for MAC.

The original Myst is a little too much the original myst. I would have liked to see the improved graphics and the additional worlds added in later updated editions of the game. Riven is exactly as I remember it from the computer version, which made it a huge but well worth it, download. The real minuses in the IOS releases is the small screen size which makes some things hard to see, hard to navigate in places and you don’t get the full impact of the wonderful landscapes and vividly detailed settings. You can enlarge the images as in other games but the quality suffers greatly. I didn’t have any crashing on either game, though I did hear some people did. Bug fixes were posted pretty frequently compared to other games I could mention (and might in later reviews).

If you never played them, here’s you chance. If you miss them on your computer screen, it’s well worth a few dollars to play them over again. In my opinion, THIS is what computer gaming should be like. I know I am in the minority with that, but since these were once the most popular games of all time, there must still be a market for a little slow, thoughtful exploration left in the gaming world.


T' said...

There was a set of the first three Myst games put out for the Mac a few years ago. I have them. And they are still wonderful. The team that made them created an entirely new type of gaming experience. I never felt so immersed in a game as I did those. To think that they are now available for an iPhone is just kinda crazy. I'm actually glad they have this kind of legs.

Behemoth media said...

I heard the newest of the computer versions won't work on the new mac OS.. which is too bad. As fun as the IOS version are, playing in the big screen is much more so.