Doctor Who: The Adventure Games – TARDIS

If you are a UK Doctor Who fan, then I hope you’re reading this review to pass the time while you’re waiting for this latest adventure game to download.

The previous two games had the Doctor and Amy travelling to places, things typically going topsy-turvy and the pair having to solve a problem outside of the blue box. This installment differs in that you’re inside the box. The whole adventure takes place inside the TARDIS, which will no doubt be a draw for fans since you get to explore the inside a little. Only a little, mind. Still, you get to fly it!

Due to the novelty of actually taking place inside the TARDIS, the plot is rather simple and maybe disappointingly weak. After a case of ‘spoke too soon’, the relatively peaceful moment is disturbed and the Doctor is unexpectedly pulled out of the TARDIS, leaving it up to Amy to explore to find something to pull him back to safety before it’s too late. Something about time pockets and jumping through them, leaving the Doctor stranded and Amy off Who-knows where (badum tiss, thank you, thank you). It’s then time to wander around the TARDIS and put together a solution to save our Doctor from a timeless fate and lots of itchy little 4-dimensional space worm creatures.

The game consists of short mini-games and point-and-click puzzles connected by cut-scenes. In this sense, it feels much more like an interactive mini-episode of the series than the other two adventures so far, which felt a little more like games. The short stints where you have to play stealthy and sneak around enemies make no sense in the ‘safety’ of the TARDIS, so they’ve been removed and replaced with more time-based challenges and good old scavenger hunting. The Doctor certainly keeps a lot of old junk hidden away in his TARDIS. Some of it is useful, the rest of it comes with handy little factoids that you can read to top up your knowledge of the Time Lord. You had better be paying attention, too.

The controls can occasionally be clumsy, particularly frustrating when you need to run and click specific things within a short time limit. We can forgive little things like this, though, considering there’s no fee, and the game has an authentic feel to it, from the funny script to the voice acting, to the crazy levers all over the TARDIS control panels. Examining the control panel either as the Doctor or Amy provides a few laughs.

All in all, a good way for Doctor Who fans to tide over the time until the next series starts. Entertaining enough, and you can’t get cheaper than free, although the other episodes feel a little more substantial in comparison. You might even laugh like I did at seeing Install-TARDIS.exe on your desktop.







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