I haven't seen many good games released this month, but among the games released this month was one absolute masterpiece: Dark Soul, by Fishfood of Eagle Rock Interactive.
Dark Soul takes place in the year 2006, in Twilight City, a huge city, built from the remains of New York. It's twice as big and has a huge crime rate. It is believed that World War IV is about to erupt... This is where the series of games from Fishfood will be set. Yes, Dark Soul is the first part of a series of relatively small games.
You play the role of Riley, a guy working for the Gene Inc Research Labs. Recently a weird event occurred on floor 17 and today you are about to be promoted to the research department of Gene Inc. This day is not going to be an ordinary day, as you might have guessed. Riley is about to witness something that will change his life, an experience he won't forgot - something odd and very interesting...
What I liked best about the first part of Dark Soul, is the eerie atmosphere the game has. It has been very well done and really got me into the game, which, of course, a good thing. This is actually the only ZZT game (with the exception of Blue Magus' Blind Remix and Madguy's Wartorn) that is actually thrilling, exciting and even scary in a way. And this is worth a compliment, if you ask me. The plot is very interesting as well and includes some sudden plot-twists.
Dark Soul's graphics are quite good, though they aren't very special. Most of the graphics consist of the inside of the Gene Inc Research Labs. The inside-the-building graphics are simple, but still professionally done. There are a few cut scene graphics that look pretty good, too. Fishfood has used a lot of dark colors, which really add to the atmosphere of the game. Hmm, combining graphics with the atmosphere - very well done, again.
Most of the game's programming is simple. The only actual programming the game has is the RPG battle, which is nice, but nothing special. Still, it provides a good change of game play in this game that is mainly an interactive movie.
I kinda missed some good, scary music. Oh well. The sound effects were okay, though. =) The game had quite a lot of spelling errors, which might be a little disturbing.
Overall, Dark Soul is a very good game that you should definitely download. If the rest of the series is going to be as good as the first part this is certainly something you should look forward, too. I also was a beta-tester for this game and I guess I should hereby thank Fishfood for letting me test it.