Bright, colourful graphics
Alfred Robbins is an ordinary man, a kind man, a family man. He works hard to support his wife and son. But things haven't been easy. Money is tight for the Robbins family. Alfred returns home late on Christmas eve, having worked overtime at the post office. His house is looking very bare, with no presents lying under the bare tree. Seems like it will be a very bleak Christmas in this household. But Alfred does his best to make the situation better. He makes do with what he has, wanting to surprise his family on Christmas morning.
Merry Christmas, Alfred Robbins is a lovely little adventure game. You can walk around simply by clicking your mouse. When the crosshair is red, that means you can interact with something. Any items you collect are shown in a little window at top-right of the screen. Scroll through items by clicking on the arrows at each side of the box. Items can by used by left-clicking on that item. Alternatively, items can be examined (which is sometimes necessary) by right-clicking on them. Moving your mouse up to the top-left corner allows you access to Save, Load, or Quit your game whenever you want to.
An interesting style of graphics is used for the characters, with Alfred himself, and his wife, both having large, white eyes. Strong, bright colours are used in the game, giving it a cheerful atmosphere. The green used in the living room matches the Christmas tree, giving it a nice Christmassy feel. I just love the picture of the clown hanging in the kitchen - it's so cute! Also, the dark attic contrasting with the bright main rooms is very effective. It shows a complete change in atmosphere, as the mood changes.
MUSIC AND SOUND EFFECTS
Nice, gentle, background music is played throughout the game, and is very subtle. Sound effects are rather sparse in Merry Christmas, Alfred Robbins. But then again, not many sound effects are needed. I like the sound of Alfred's footsteps as he walks around the house. The phone suddenly ringing made me jump, and the creepy voice on the other end is very effective.
I thoroughly enjoyed Merry Christmas, Alfred Robbins. The story is well-written, and really makes you sympathise with Alfred - he's trying to the best he can, under difficult circumstances, after all. The game has a lovely twist in it (I won't spoil it for you). Not everyone will appreciate this twist, but I for one thought it brought a lot to the game, and the game creator pulled it off nicely! I love how the characters have been drawn. Both Alfred, and his wife (and presumably, his sleeping son) all have these huge white eyes, with no pupils. All-in-all, a top-notch game - a bit short perhaps, but I highly recommend nonetheless.
Review by: Frodo
Safe for ages: 13+