I got my first “real” PC in 1994 and one of the first games I got for it was a terrific LucasArts point and click adventure game called Day of the Tentacle (which is free this month on Playstation if you have Playstion+, go grab it right now). My brother and I spent I don’t even know how many hours working through the puzzles, trying to figure out how to combine two wacky things in order to get through just one more puzzle. But no matter how obtuse the answer ended up being, we rarely felt frustrated, because the game was just so damn funny.
That perfectly sums up how I feel about The Cave, which makes sense since it’s creator Ron Gilbert was also the designer on Day of the Tentacle, in addition to other classics like Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion. As the game starts, you pick three adventures from a roster of seven and then enter the cave, which proceeds to make fun of you through most of your journey. Yes, the cave itself is sentient and acts as your narrator throughout your time inside of…it. Each of your adventurers has a different “special skill” that will allow you to advance deeper into the cave. For instance, my Knight can make himself invincible for short periods of time, so he can fall through fire or not die when jumping from high places. My Time Traveler on the other hand can travel through solid objects such as closed doors. Throughout the game, you combine these skills in unique ways to solve puzzles and complete quests.
I’m only an hour into the game, but it appears that the cave forms itself to some degree around your party, and that each of your party members will have a specific quest inside the cave. So far in the video above I’ve finished the Knights quest, which was to free Excalibur. But first, I had to win the affection of the King’s daughter, or at least get her locket. I’ll be honest, it didn’t work out exactly how I though it would, but it was really funny either way. If this is in fact the case, the game should have a lot of replayability, as you create different parties to complete all of the quests for each adventurer.
With sixty minutes into the game, I should be about a quarter way done with it. Honestly, that is probably the perfect amount of time to spend in the world of The Cave for a single play through. I’m definitely going to finish this one and could even see myself coming back to it in the future and trying it out with different characters. So far I’ve found the game charming and just the right kinda funny, the puzzles challenging without being to hard and the game itself is gorgeous (especially when you realize it’s from last generation.) Give it a go (especially if you can get it for free); if you like adventure games I think you’ll like this.