- Decent character development
- Good narrative
- Varied locations
- Fixed camera can hinder item visibility
- Pixel hunting at times
The mouse as a user interface isn’t dying anytime soon, with another point and click adventure squeaking its way on Steam. Jack Keane 2: The Fire Within is the sequel to the aptly named Jack Keane; a Monkey Island, Broken Sword, Lucasarts inspired game which takes Jack to all manner of perils and danger in the quest for loot. Unfortunately he is a bit tied up at the start of his second adventure, and requires the help of his buxom babes such as Amanda. To be honest, Jack is completely useless in a fight and doesn’t exude the manliness a girl may want, but I guess they can’t all be Indiana Jones. It is however, a grand old adventure that requires a dabble in grey matter usage.
An action packed sequence begins the game with you not controlling Jack. Jack is, indisposed, and it takes a woman to save him. After setting off some fireworks on a boat, the scene changes back to Jack locked up in the clink. There’s a rambling shaman locked up with you, something about treasure and wall scribblings and then, he dies. But before he departs, he leaves you with a glowing object, perhaps a key to this treasure. Not a person to pass up the potential of treasure, you swiftly make your escape before beginning your loot hunting. There are some obstacles along the way, such as thinking of an escape out of the cell and also the likelihood of being thrown into an arena fight with a brute who would like you to bend over to grab the soap.
Jacko is a smart thinking chap though, and after a cannonball blast you are free to traverse the walls and escape. The puzzling problems that present themselves aren’t cranium fracturing, but there are some slight hindrances. A fixed camera is the norm for clicky adventures, unfortunately certain camera angles can hide items from view which may be critical for progression. Pixel hunting can also be a nightmare, but the use of the search tool means that items will be highlighted on the screen that can be picked up. A more intuitive option would be to have an animated glint on items that are nearby, but that is the Broken Sword in me. The characters themselves are involving and developed well, although mammary gland enhancements seem to be very popular with the developers. Tits or get the…
As adventure games go, the vast array of locations and plot lines weave in and out without becoming too dull and it helps that all characters have star time to develop a deeper narrative. The fighting scenes are amusing however, and your progression with Jack is based on the accumulation of different moves throughout the game in the style of a Street Fighter match. He starts off as a somewhat wimpy fighter, with some of his moves consisting of begging for mercy or whining. Such comedy highlights are prevalent throughout, and you can expect some laughs with some rather strange scenarios. I’m not sure entirely sure if this fighting mechanic works well or not; at face value it is merely a way to create an extra level of character development and not a pivotal part of the game.
Jack Keane 2 is decent stab at making a sequel for such an old game, albeit still in keeping with the adventures games of yore. it does not jump out as a groundbreaking game, but the point and click adventure wheel never needed reinventing. It is a nice distraction from mainstream titles such as the rabid dog infested Call of Duty et al and we all need some humour in our lives. Jack Keane 2: The Fire Within is out now on Steam.