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NVISION: Adventure Time!

By NVISION - Fri, May 18, 2012

If someone held a gun to my head and ordered me to name one game genre, any genre that I love more than all others, I wouldn't have to think twice: For me, it's all about classic point-and-click adventures games, particularly of the Sierra and LucasArts varieties. Over the past few years, we've seen a healthy resurgence of these games, once wholly pushed aside by the arguably more engaging first-person shooter and real-time strategy genres during the late 1990s.

Telltale Games has been at it for a while, with episodic series attached to licenses like Sam & Max, Monkey Island, and Back to the Future (and, at some point here, a revival of Sierra's King's Quest franchise). LucasArts cashed in on the whole HD-ification craze with impressive remakes of the first two Monkey Island games. Famous designers like Tim Schafer, Al Lowe, and Jane Jensen have all struck Kickstarter gold with their upcoming adventure game projects (and Jensen -- most famous for her Gabriel Knight series -- turned in another winner with 2010's Gray Matter). Capcom's Ace Attorney saga certainly walks the adventure game walk. And even Space Quest designers Mark Crowe and Scott Murphy (affectionately known as the Two Guys from Andromeda) recently announced a still-mysterious reunion project.

It's like the late '80s all over again... except with better graphics, and voice-acting that doesn't suck! So where the heck are all the Android adventure games?

It's not like the mobile means aren't there. Telltale's catalog has slowly made its way onto the iTunes Store, and both of LucasArts' Monkey Island remakes have been sitting pretty on there for years. Capcom's also released HD remakes of the Ace Attorney games to Japanese iPhone owners. Heck, even Adventure Game Studio -- one of the most acclaimed and accessible indie adventure game development engines in existence -- has its own work-in-progress Android port floating around (and hey let's not forget the excellent ScummVM emulator port, either).

Given that the Android platform can handle big, impressive games like Grand Theft Auto III, Anomaly: Warzone Earth, and Sonic the Hedgehog 4, I'm scratching my head here. How much of a stretch could it possibly be to get Gray Matter or The Secret of Monkey Island HD? We're talking about a genre with fundamental gameplay mechanics of "move mouse cursor and click on things" here. You'd think it's a match made in heaven, no?

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