Spooky Lovecraftian atmosphere
True horror adventure games aren't easily found. Sure, a game can be gory, but that's not really scary... just disturbing. There are few games that can truly make you jump. Fortunately, Trilby's Notes pulls this off perfectly. Finished in 2006 by Fully Ramblomatic a.k.a Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw, Trilby's Notes provides the perfect sequel to 5 Days a Stranger and the perfect prequel to 7 Days a Skeptic.
The story begins a couple months after the events in 5 Days a Stranger. Trilby the cat burglar has been arrested and given a job as a government agent for his "special skills". Simone became an alcoholic and lost her job as a news anchor. Alarmed by her failing mental health, Trilby travels to her apartment to see her, but when he arrives, he finds her dead. Seeing a possible connection to the Defoe manor case, the government sends Trilby to a New England hotel in order to investigate a professor who has come in possession of relics from the Defoe manor. But upon arrival, Trilby soon learns that the hotel is not what it seems. What's up with those relics? Who is the tall man in the black coat? Delve into this Lovecraftian horror mystery game and find out for yourself.
Now as far as game play, this game becomes very interesting. Not many games are found in the AGS circle using the text parser, but that's exactly what is in use in this game. In order to use the parser, just type a command in it and the character will do it. Type TALK to talk, LOOK to look, etc. But some interactions are much more complex than this so don't limit yourself to just the normal parser commands if you get stuck. The graphics are a little dated, but they pull off the mood and style of the game perfectly. The graphics have also been upgraded heavily from this games predecessors. The music is what really sets of the mood of the game though. You don't hear any music in normal situations, but when it starts to get a little creepy, you'll start to hear voices. Hats off to Mark Lovegrove for his musical talents.
Overall, this game is quite well done, and I expect it to turn into a favorite of all adventure gamers. If you like thrills, chills, and tall dark men carrying an axe this game is for you. It will appeal to many, if not for its well-written story then for its challenging puzzles. So therefore, I give this game a 4.8.
UPDATE APRIL 2010
Yatzee has now released a Special Edition for this game, free of charge. The Special Edition includes audio commentary, soundtrack with composer notes, the Books of Chzo in Word format, and extended ending scene. You can download it from the same page as the regular version.
Review by: Fawfulhasfury
Gore, violence, disturbing scenes.
Safe for ages: 18+