Friday, February 6, 2004
Posted by Philip Colmer in "SOFTWARE" @ 10:00 AM
It isn't until you reach the end of the game that you find out where FADE got its name from, so I'm not going to spoil that for you. It's a graphical adventure game that from the very start contains beautifully rendered images and a storyline that will keep you hooked until you've solved it.
Installation is very straightforward and you can install the game onto a storage card if you like. If you've got an older iPAQ (38xx or older), you may want to play with the gamma adjustment tool that is either available as a patch (if you've bought version 1.07 of the game or an earlier version) or gets installed alongside the game if you get the latest release (1.09). There is no documentation of this tool, so using it is initially a bit difficult because when it starts - all you get is a blank screen! A quick press on the D-pad, though, and you get a screen looking something like Figure 1. Pressing up and down on the D-pad increases or decreases the adjustment and, when you are happy with the results, tap on OK. The setting is then kept for when you play the game.
Figure 1: Adjusting the visibility on an old iPAQ.
When you start the game, you are presented with the options shown in Figure 2. As you can see, there aren't actually any options for the game per se – just the ability to start a new game, load a game, save a game, see the credits and quit. There aren't any options for changing button mappings (because the buttons aren't used – it's pure point and click) or control over the volume (because there isn't much in the way of sound). The lack of a control for the sound is, perhaps, an omission that needs correcting because although the Pocket PC has a volume control itself, you don't know how loud or soft the game itself is going to sound until you start playing it and, by then, it's going to be tricky to save the game, quit it, adjust the volume, restart the game and load your position. When you decide to save where you've got to in the game, there are three available slots.
Figure 2: The game options.
Tap on "New Game" and you are given the introductory background to the story. You play the part of Louis Everett. You are thirty, married to Anne and you own an antique shop. You also need to take pills to control your headaches …
Figure 3: Anne reminds you to take your tablets.