Unavowed Review – A Good, Old-Fashioned Adventure Game With Updated Sensibilities.

Unavowed
Wadjet Eye Games

When I’d first heard of Unavowed, I thought that it seemed like a pretty simplistic set-up for a game which leaned heavily on the 90s point-and-click titles of yore. Personally, I considered many of those games highly overrated especially since in contemporary times, many folks assume that anything that is retro is good.

However, once I delved deeper into Unavowed’s storyline and got to learn more about its intriguing characters, I was hooked. While this ode to 90s adventure games may look rather ho-hum, once you peel back the layers of its multifaceted mysteries you’ll get to enjoy some keen writing with lots of twists and turns. It’s such an addictive experience that I found myself thinking about the various characters and their individual idiosyncrasies throughout the day.

I’ve played plenty of games that feature demonic possession at their core but they usually wind down after whatever evil entity has been dealt with, which ends the game. Not so with Unavowed. Here, the main character wakes up on a rainy, New York rooftop with hardly any memory as to how he got there. From there, you’re introduced to the titular characters that make up the Unavowed: a cult-like order that tracks down and eradicates demons.

The Unavowed just so happened to be on your tail since you, the main character, have just had a demon banished from your host-body. You see, you’ve been quite a bad boy; running around New York for the past year or so on a blood-soaked crime spree. Fortunately, as the game begins the demonic entity has seemingly been dealt with and the Unavowed offer you membership within their ranks. Your collective goal is to find out where the demon came from and why it went on its killing spree throughout the city.

Your character may choose one of three origin stories at the outset—those being a bartender, actor, or cop. You have to choose wisely, because each of these backgrounds bring with them a host of considerations. Your pick will not only shape how you’re able to interact with other characters that you come across but also how the story develops as well. This vastly improves not only the games diversity and unpredictability, but also its replayability; a rare feat for your typical point-and-click adventure game.

During my two play throughs, I watched in awe as I recruited various characters and saw them develop organically into fascinating personalities, each with their own idiosyncrasies and whatever deeper issues they happened to be dealing with. Unlike other dialogue-heavy games such as the This is the Police series, listening to the characters interact never feels like a chore that made me want to keep hitting the Enter key in order to hasten things up. That’s because Unavowed’s formidable writing is backed up by some truly stellar voice acting.

The game’s main mystery spans throughout some of New York’s famous boroughs; such as Staten Island, Brooklyn, and The Bronx—as well as Wall Street and Chinatown. Each of the various locations you get to travel to, are lavishly rendered with great looking, 2D, sprite-based artwork.

As you visit these different places you’ll begin to piece together what the demon’s plans are. But what was personally so shocking is that I began to slowly realize that everything wasn’t as it first appeared, and how treacherously the main baddie subtly manipulated things just behind the scenes.

Similar to any of the classic role-playing games that you’ve probably played, in Unavowed you can undertake a number of various, disparate quests. All of them can be very unpredictable. For instance, I took on many humdrum type assignments, including one that seemed pretty pedestrian and turned out to entail saving the city from a gigantic, interdimensional dragon. I’m just happy that it wasn’t yet another form of tentacled Cthulhu-type creatures that many games seem to ripoff all the time.

There are also many types of puzzles that you’ll have to solve. Whereas most adventure and mystery games of this sort give you a single way to crack puzzles, in Unavowed each puzzle is multifaceted. In other words, each one gives you different ways of solving them—just because one doesn’t work doesn’t mean another won’t.

Unavowed is definitely more than the sum of its parts. It is packed to the brim with fascinating characters, intriguing mysteries, beautifully rendered graphics, and great replay value. It’s definitely a must for any fan of point-and-click adventure games and mystery games in general.

SCORE: 86%

Unavowed features pretty great graphics that make its adventure gameplay truly shine. However, you want to have a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. So, you may just want to invest in a decent gaming rig:

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