|System: PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: The Games Company||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: DreamCatcher Interactive / The Adventure Company||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 07, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Nathan Meunier
In very few fantasy adventure games would one expect to run across a disciplinarian granny with a taste for whips, handcuffs, sensually scented incense, and a bondage teddy bear. Even more disturbing, old grandma seems a little too eager to ply visitors (particularly young men) with a free massage. While the stomach churning imagery fortunately treads just short of truly crossing the boundaries of decency, its exactly this kind of unexpected wackiness that saves Everlight of Magic & Power from being a complete bust. A little spice never hurts, particularly when most other aspects of a game closely border on the generic.
Magic is a crucial ingredient in a world where fantasy runs amuck. Under the pretense of searching for his own inner magic, the protagonist in Everlight finds himself engaging in an unusual series of challenges in a realm thats fairly mundane during the daylight hours yet completely off the hook when the sun sets. Theres plenty of medieval flavor and mysticism scattered in amongst the quasi-Harry Potter vibe. However, thats not what makes it different or special.
The setup for what turns out to be a nominally engaging yet relatively amusing adventure is unceremonious and slapdash. Melvin a kid who looks a little too much like Daniel Radcliff for his own good walks into a candle shop on a wet dreary day. There he meets a wildly buck-toothed shopkeeper fellow who claims to be a magician and entices the boy, through a parlor trick involving three small cups and a magic flame, to become one himself. Soon after, Melvin is teleported to the unusual and magical town of Tallen where he must help the residents there escape from the clutches of a curse that causes them to let their hair down and get a little wild in the nighttime hours. This is accomplished by facing your own fears, of course and by running a whole lot of errands.
Tallen is an unusual village to say the least. By day, citizens go about their normal business; when night falls, they give in to their dark desires gambling, lust, thievery, drinking, and so forth. Humorously, the curse causes them to have no recollection of their nocturnal experiences. After saving his spiritual guide Fiona (an elf thats actually a fairy), Melvin is informed he must simultaneously help the ailing citizenry and overcome his five personal fears (of failure, loneliness, disappointment, fear itself, and death).
In most regards, Everlight is a typical specimen of the long-running adventure game genre. Its a little light on the puzzle work, heavy on tedious dialogue trees, and rife with context sensitive item use. Much of Melvins time is spent roaming around chatting folks up and doing tasks for them to eventually get something in return. Youll be nabbing plenty of odd items, but its often hard to figure out what to do with them, since youll sometimes pick them up well before theyre needed.