WalkinMan's Review of The Continuing Voyage 8/12:

I just finished playing through the entire game and I quite enjoyed it. For those who haven't downloaded the game and are interested in a sequel to Judgment Rites (JR) and 25th Anniversary (25), I recommend The Continuing Voyage. It has a storyline which is expansive in scope and classically Trek-like, particularly TOS in style.

The missions do progress somewhat in difficulty and towards the final missions it became even more interesting and different. I liked also how the missions had variety between formats, from espionage to exploration to conflict. Locales range from outer space to deep tunnels in alien planets and starships galore.

The music includes a lot of cues from the Astral Symphony, a soundtrack I really enjoy. Some of the cues were uniquely appropriate, as in funny or dramatic.

This game comes the closest yet to replicating the experience of JR/25 in terms of the storyline, scripting, and the nature of the puzzles. I found some of the puzzles genuinely entertaining, some very difficult and searched for hints. The puzzles reminded me of 25/JR, and in some cases also the Myst series. Whether it's deciphering symbols, or assembling a device to achieve an objective, or opening a door/portal, these were interesting and challenging, and yes at times frustrating. The experience is very familiar to the adventure game genre.

I would recommend talking to the landing party members when dealing with certain challenges, and scanning with the tricorder. Sometimes, when a screen pops up (such as a console or something) talking to the landing party members or scanning will give hints.

Definitely helpful to scan each room/environment while observing the tags which appear on the lower left of the screen, that makes clear where things are. On a few occasions there is a spot one can walk into but it may be somewhat hidden/unclear. The tags are the way to see that.

There are also a few instances when speed is required, and a specific inventory item or character must be selected. Fortunately, the game offers a 'reset' point after you are killed/fail the mission, which is very helpful in lieu of an in-game save function. It is also helpful that the mission codes are there to allow access to different levels of progression. With regards to the codes (letters, numbers, notes) in the game, I recommend writing them down. It helps that, unlike JR/25, the game is in a window which allows one to use a text file/notepad program in the background to save notes.

The environments are scenes drawn from existing games, and I recognized the environments from 25th anniversary (science labs, offices etc), Judgment Rites (guard tower, space station interior), ST TNG A Final Unity (The Unity Device), Voyager Elite Force (TOS mods), Riven (Gehn's office), Myst IV (Tomahna), etc. These sources are credited by the game, and the integration, while hodgepodge, generally works. I particularly liked the backdrops from games I had not played before--the watchtower/Tirion planet with waterfall, and another planet were particularly beautiful (Syberia?).

I also liked how Spock and McCoy's debates were included, and how each TOS bridge character had moments to contribute. Ultimately the game's plot was a logical extension of the themes of JR in particular, along with elements of A Final Unity, and an overall independent story all of its own. There was definitely a connection to a certain 3rd season TOS episode, and shades of TNG's "Conspiracy" as well which was a cool recipe for the game's multi-mission arc. I really enjoyed it...and considering the effort that went into it, it is very impressive for a fanmade game. I wished that the 25/JR genre continued, and with fans taking off where companies such as Interplay began, that is now a reality.

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