GETTING INTO THE BITS OF THE LONGEST JOURNEY GAME
The Longest Journey, one of the marvels of Funcom, is a type of point-and-click adventure video game that was initially released in Norway on November 19, 1999. Its developer that is Funcom is also known for the development of other popular games like Anarchy Online, Age of Conan, The Secret World et cetera. The Longest Journey has portions of extensive dialogues in it that are not mandatory to view for the completion of the game. Such interactive sessions of dialogues between different characters are beautifully written by Ragnar Tornquist. There are over more than 150 locations that are covered in the game as the protagonists embark on the journey of saving the twin worlds of her universe. In addition to all this, it has 40+ game hours and 20+ minutes of high resolution pre-rendered video footage. The game has an amazing soundtrack that adds to the mood and environment of the game set by the developer.
The recommended system requirements include:
Pentium II, 226mhz, 64 MB RAM, 3d accelerator card with 4 MB RAM, 1GB free hard drive space.
The game is set in two different worlds—Stark and Arcadia. Stark is very much relevant to our world except that it depicts a technological utopia which makes it a futuristic sci-fi setting. The other world, Arcadia, is a magical world full of mythical creatures like dragons and sea-horses with wings. Both of these parallel worlds though existing in different dimensions must be kept in balance otherwise the universe would collapse. According to the story, these two worlds were initially kept in an intricate balance but after the failure of the Guardian of Arcadia, the balance came at the verge of getting destroyed. Here is when the protagonist of the story, the warrior princess or the saviour of the two worlds need. Unknown of the significance of her existence, April Ryan is an average girl in Stark world who studies arts. Before Ryan enters into the mythical world Arcadia, she had some dreams about dragons. Not only this, in her everyday life she noticed a few irregularities that when she actually came back from Arcadia for the first time she thought it must have been a dream or some sort of hallucination. In Arcadia, a dark chaotic vortex (a character) known in the game as Cortez brings upon her the revelation that she must take the responsibility of maintaining the balance between the two worlds otherwise the inevitable dystopia in both the regions would likely to occur. As the story of the game unfolds, the player gets captivated at how elegantly yet savagely April fights against her enemies and restores the balance of the twin worlds. The end of the game reflects back to the epilogue where Lady Alavane narrates this story to two youngsters. This ending scene leaves clues for the birth of its sequel - Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
Though every character contributes to the progress and development of the plot in The Longest Journey but the one character that truly stands out is, of course, the protagonist, April Ryan. She is the type of character with whom all of us can relate. She is not a skilled warrior neither a herculean knight. She has no training in how to fight or defend herself. Physically she doesn’t even look strong and mighty. She is an average girl who in Stark is struggling to learn arts. In the highly technological Stark, she is not even a hacker. Despite all these reasons, April took the responsibility of saving both the twin worlds and prevent its inhabitants from the inevitable catastrophe that is likely to fall upon them. She is a round character that develops and changes throughout the plot. With her determination, she became a warrior despite all the weaknesses she had at the beginning of the story. This gives a general message to the gamers that with will and determination, one can reach its destiny regardless of how many obstacles and hurdles they face during the journey. Besides April, some other important and influential characters includes Lady Alavane who narrates the story, Cortez a Latin American who briefs April how to maintain the balance of the two intricate worlds, Crow a magical talking bird of some unknown origin who befriends April during her journey, Brian Westhouse who was a journalist in Stark world and throughout the game provides crucial information to April and warns her of the dangers, Gordon Halloway the expected next guardian of Arcadia who was kidnapped by Vanguard for experimentation and lastly Roper Klacks an Alchemist who guides April during her journey. From an overall observation of the game, there are more than 70 speaking characters in it. Such a huge number of characters linked it to each other in a beautiful manner makes The Longest Journey, one of the finest games of the decade.
Since the release of The Longest Journey, it is hugely praised and acclaimed by the critics. The critics regarded the game unique and different for the characterization and representation of its female protagonist, April Ryan, who stands out among other contemporary female characters. On GamesRanking The Longest Journey received a score of 88.00%. Similarly, on Metacritic, it received a 91 out of 100 which was a huge success for the game. The GamesDomain is of the view: ‘The Longest Journey isn’t only the best adventure games in recent years, it is one of the best games ever!’