Best point-and-click adventure games
I think adventure games are coming back because people are nostalgic for the games of their youth and want something different than the shooters, MMOs and sims that have been on offer. Really, it's just about variety. Jane Jenson, creator of the Gabriel Knight series
If youre new to the genre or looking to revisit some of the best adventure games out there, check out our list and see if youve played them all or what you should be looking out for.
10. To the Moon
To the Moons poignant story about a dying mans last wish worked perfectly in an interactive medium, with its 16-bit SNES era style graphics and touching soundtrack. It may not have the depth (or length) compared to the other games youll see on this list, but this is one of the few games in recent years that has really touched us and we cant help but give it some love.
9. The Longest Journey
The games strength was not only in its complex and interesting story but it was able to make you truly care about the characters that you meet. When you werent absorbed in the story, the game would capture your attention with gorgeous visuals and animated sequences. A sequel was released several years later, but from what weve been told Ragnar Tornquist would like to return to the world of The Longest Journey as soon as hes done with The Secret World. Lets hope!
8. Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars
With so many beautiful and exotic European locations to visit, its easy to get sucked into the mystery that has unfolded right before you. You play as George Stobbart mainly, (and switch with Nico Collard at times) an American lawyer on vacation who, after surviving a caf explosion by a killer dressed as a clown, decides to investigate the crime that nearly took his life. With intuitive puzzles and an intriguing storyline, its a treat to go through this cinematic point-and-click adventure on any platform.
7. Sam & Max Hit the Road
Sam, the canine shamus and Max, the hyperkinect rabbit are a pair of overzealous crime fighters have dubbed themselves the Freelance Police and will do what is necessary for justice to prevail. It can be cheesy but it works, and youll laugh because the jokes never miss their mark. Its no wonder that the series has continued throughout the past decade and we hope that it shows no signs of stopping.
6. Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis
It has everything youd expect from an Indy game - Nazis, treasure, and a lovely lady at his side. As the intrepid Jones, its a race to beat Hitlers minions to the fabled lost city of Atlantis that harbors a weapon more powerful than an atomic bomb. Whats cool about this game is that there are also multiple ways to solve a puzzle, so youll be rewarded depending on how inventive you are with your solutions.
As fate would have it, the recent Nintendo Wii game Indiana Jones and the Staff on the Kings included Fate of Atlantis as an unlockable, but you can also find it on Steam.
5. King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow
The game may have been a typical boy-meets-girl and then boy-must-save-girl story, but it was the mythology-themed puzzles, gorgeous environments, and touching love story that captured our attention. Visually, the Kings Quest VI may not hold up as well as some of the others, (and were still secretly hoping for a remake), but you can find it off Steam and relive all the Kings Quest adventures from your youth or see what youve been missing.
4. Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers
The mood and ambience is what set this game apart and was partially why people fell in love with it. Its not just because of the dark subject matter, but the writing, the soundtrack, and the settings all work together to create an intense and rich experience that you wont soon forget.
3. Day of the Tentacle
Thanks to Dr. Fred Edisons faulty time travel device, you play as three separate protagonists, stuck in various time periods and must solve devious puzzles by flushing items to and from the future via a porta potty time machine in hopes of stopping Purple Tentacle. Do we really need to say more?
If youve never had a chance to play Day of the Tentacle, it is tough to find. But LucasArts has said that they were interested in bringing other games over depending on the success of The Secret of Monkey Island remake. (What are you waiting for?)
2. Grim Fandango
The paper-mache art style, eclectic soundtrack and memorable characters were what made Grim Fandango stand out amongst the others, and the game still holds up today. Weird, dark, hilarious, and educational, youll not only be entertained by this quirky adventure that pokes fun at death, but theres a lot to learn about Mexican folklore too.
Unfortunately, the game isnt available for purchase unless you were to buy it used. Heres hoping that there will be a remake down the line
1. The Secret of Monkey Island
Even though Guybrush Threepwood went on to make several appearances in subsequent games, The Secret of Monkey Island was still his most memorable adventure. Hurling insults in a sword fight and negotiating with a used boat salesman are just some of random things that you do as you try to become a pirate and save Governor Elaine Marley from the clutches of an evil ghost pirate. Its a blast to get lost (and go around in circles) in the world of Monkey Island because there are so many great characters to interact with and plenty of goofy moments. But most importantly, the game helped pave the way for more excellent adventures to come.
The Secret of Monkey Island was remade recently with updated audio and visuals, and you can play it on Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, iPad and iPhone.
Too many to fit
We know there are plenty of adventure games we missed, some old, some new. This list could have kept on going, but we had to cap it off at some point. Let us know which ones were your favorites and tell us why!