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Great game from my childhood: The 7th guest

Hey all,

I remember back in 1994 I believe, when my dad bought The 7th Guest for my sister. She's a few years older than me and understood some of the puzzles more, so my dad thought she'd enjoy this game. Continuing on...

Surely one of the most frightening games ever made, The 7th Guest was the subject of a lot of press upon its release for its 3D rendered graphics, its use of live action movies in parts of the game, and for its horror content. Despite the fact that it was released in the early 1990s, the amazing graphics hold up pretty well today.

Although the game has many plot points in its basic premise, it comes across pretty simply. Once there was a toymaker named Henry Stauf (an anagram for "Faust") who made unique toys, each one different from the last, and children everywhere loved them. But then, circa 1903, he moved to the town of Harley-on-the-Hudson, and became a notorious mass killer. More tragedy still: a terrible virus began, killing the children of Harley. Then, one night, Stauf invited 7 people up to his mansion (which is on an otherwise deserted island not far from Harley), and 6 of them perished.

Once you are in Stauf's mansion (which you are after the beginning movie), it's pretty simple: you play the 7th guest, an alive but disembodied young man named Ego, and try to beat 20 or so puzzles, all of them ones that Stauf himself has laid out. He watches you as you do them, but once you complete them all, you get to find out what happened to the other 6 that fateful night. There is even a place you can go to in the house that completes puzzles that you are having difficulty completing. This is a mixed blessing, however, as it then permanently locks the room in which it is in, thereby making it impossible to do any unfinished puzzles in those rooms.

But in the end, the real reason why The 7th Guest is a success is not because of its wonderful (if that's the right way to put it, considering that this is a very dark game) premise, or its elaborate puzzles. As I said before, this is "surely one of the most frightening games ever made." I had never heard of it until my dad saw it at a computer store and bought it for my sister one day, and I was expecting just another game. But like Sweet Tarts Shockers, they give you something you don't expect. In Stauf's house, nearly everywhere you turn, you see at least one ghost, each more frightening than the last. The two scariest, in my opinion, are the two period piece women walking beside the staircase upstairs, and the wailing baby in Stauf's bathroom. More scary still is the music, which is so classic that it has been borrowed and used in several media.

Although, for the reason I just stated, I wouldn't recommend this game to anyone with a low constitution or under the age of 13 (I was about 10 when I 1st watched my sister play), The 7th Guest represents a very intriguing puzzle game that has held up well over time.

Well, keep it real.......
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