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What is an Adventure Game ?
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A Tour of the Indies
Lifestream is an Adventure game creation of Christopher M. Brendel
of Unimatrix Productions. The game was released in 2004 and was the
first commercially available Adventure game made by Christopher Brendel.
Since then Christopher has gone on to make the highly acclaimed
Adventures 'Shady Brook' and 'The Filmmaker'.
The basic premise of the game is as follows – John Holton's father has
disappeared some three weeks past. John sets out to try to discover the cause
of his dad's mysterious disappearance. Being the son of a priest, something
that he knows would be severely frowned upon and which would damage
his father's reputation should it be publicly known, John chooses to take on
the investigation himself, privately, rather than risk harming his father's
standing within the community and the church. What ensues is a mystery
which reveals far more sinister goings on than John could ever have
envisaged in his search for his dad.
In the course of the game the player takes on the role of both John and his
father, Randolph. Information included with game stipulates that 'Lifestream'
is suitable for players aged 13 years and above, mainly due to the fact that it
includes one or two violent scenes, but more especially an impressively
Is 'Lifestream' any good? Well, here's a little information encompassing
my ‘take’ on the game.
To say the story is intriguing would not be an overstatement. If, like
me, you enjoy playing Adventure games where the only thing obvious is that
the developer of said game has put in a tremendous amount of thought and
effort to come up with a gripping and quite original plot premise then
this Adventure could well leave you very satisfied indeed.
‘Lifestream’ was made using Adventure Maker software and, on the
plus side, whereas the graphics are certainly not top notch by today’s standards,
they’re certainly good enough to make the enthusiastic player feel convinced
by the game environments presented. Transitions between scenes were a
little hazy, but that can certainly be overlooked when all things are
considered. After all, amazingly jaw-dropping graphics are not everything;
as most devout point and click veterans of Sierra’s and LucaArts’ halcyon
days will tell you. Character body movements, expressions and gestures
are all quite impressive considering this was Mr Brendel’s first venture into
game design. One character’s smile, however, that of a young lady, did at one
point in the game give me a bit of a start. I’d not have wanted to meet her
in a dark alley, I can tell you. The only real down point is that many of the
scenes are very dark indeed and, even with monitor brightness turned up to
maximum, some scenes and inventory objects (one in particular), are a little
unclear. This did not, however, affect my overall enjoyment of the game.
With few, if any as I recall, exceptions, ‘Lifestream’ is a simple and
straightforward mouse-controlled Adventure with on-screen arrows and
object-interaction indicator icons pointing the player toward entrances, exits,
lefts, rights, ups, downs, etc.. Pixel hunting is none too arduous.
Sound and Music
Ambient sounds add to the eerie atmosphere evoked by the game and,
coupled with the extremely pleasant, though frequently sombre (and
spooky), soundtrack, which was composed, though not I believe specifically
for the game, by Justin R. Durban of Edgen Animations, fit very well with
the tension filled nature of the game narrative.
One of the most impressive aspects of this game. Dialogue is clear, well
voiced and thoroughly convincing throughout.
The puzzles of ‘Lifestream’ are varied, quite original in many instances,
and, for the most part, fit quite well within the game narrative. None are
too taxing and, with the exception of one relatively small maze sequence,
are of easy-to-moderate difficulty for the majority of experienced Adventure
I played ‘Lifestream’ on my trusty old ‘Windows 98SE’ PC, but I’m told
the game will run well on ‘Windows XP’ as well. I failed to get it to run
on ‘Windows 7’. I think it best to assume it will not run in a ‘Vista’ nor
a ‘Windows 7’ environment. I believe Chris’s Unimatrix website may well
indeed say that is the case.
One point worth noting
Christopher Brendel has been very approachable and extremely helpful
regarding all questions I’ve had the occasion to ask about his game/s.
Final Summing Up
‘Lifestream’ is a very enjoyable, plot-driven Adventure and one that, if
you’re prepared to forsake sun-bursting graphics and, instead, partake in a
cracking good story with a thrilling climax, will give you ten or so hours of
thoroughly engrossing entertainment. Most certainly a ‘thumbs-up’ as far
as this intrepid Adventurer is concerned.
AP Member Review
Go TO ... Reviews
An Adventure game from Unimatrix Productions
A review by Gelert
Mar. 19th, 2012
More game information can be found within the Adventure Point database
Click on the binoculars!
Story – A
Graphics – B-
Interface – B+
Sound and Music – B+
Voice Acting – A-
Puzzles – B+
Difficulty – Easy/Moderate
Overall Rating : B+