Merk's Review: Orevore Courier

The “official” version can be found at my website:

I’m reading them! I suspect other people are too. (I haven’t been commenting mostly because I feel like I’m already saying what I have to say about each game in my own reviews.)

I’m awfully long-winded. I’ve been hoping the view count isn’t just me re-loading the page a few times as I double-check what I posted. :slight_smile:

I’ve been good (so far) about not reading anybody else’s reviews for a game until I’ve written mine. But once I do, I’ve been heading over to your site and the others you linked to see what’s there.

Since there are more than 70 views on some of your reviews although there is no reply, I guess there are more than 70 interested readers. I personally only read this one yet, because I didn’t play any other of the reviewed games yet.

But I really had hoped more people would post their reviews in a thread to each game, so there would be an easy way to compare them (and find them later on), perhaps even a discussion. But I guess most people like it better to have reviews in personal blogs (I have no idea why).


It adds to the count on each reload, and I know I’ve viewed them several times myself. My guess is probably a dozen or so different readers are coming to check out what’s new.

I don’t think so. Granted, you may have viewed them several times. But since one can see that there are no replies, it wouldn’t be reasonable to check if there’s something new. Even if some people may have forgotten if they already read a review (hard to imagine) there must be far more readers than merely “a dozen or so”.


Well, that’s a good point. And from time to time, I do see guest (unregistered) logins showing in the list. Plus, it’s still early. Probably later this month or in November, more people will have played more games.

I’ve only played six so far. I’ll keep posting them as I go along.

I don’t have anything relevant to add to your thorough review, but for what it’s worth I’d like to add my two cent.

I liked the concept, which reminded me of “All Things Devours” and of the Infocom title “Suspended”. It’s not as brilliant as those, but still a very nice game. However, I, too, found it to be too difficult. Often, it didn’t give me the right idea how to proceed and after traversing it using the walkthrough I think it should have been better clued. I spent much too long, trying for example to get Ghee doing something useful. It frustrated me far more than ATD, where I always had the feeling I’d win at the next try. But perhaps I would have beaten the game, if I hadn’t tried to solve it in the judging time. I also like Zombie-games, so it was a very pleasant surprise to me, when Sharl woke up again. The descriptions are appropriatly detailed and very funny. I laughed out loud after using the Boom-Button (nice lettering by the way).

There are some implausibilities (yes, even zombie-pirate games shouldn’t have plot holes): for one thing, it never is explained, why the two major incidents (zombies and pirates) are connected. I suppose they aren’t, but would have liked the author putting some more thought in this. More important, I never got why the copy-button records things that happened immediatly before. I didn’t get used to this in the whole playing time.

Nevertheless: I voted it an eight, thus being the best of the eight entries I played so far.


The pilot is hit by a space rock that crashes through the hull (which is the cause of the initial warnings that start, I think). I guess it’s a rock that turns people into zombies, which is at least more acceptable than thinking they’re not connected at all. :slight_smile:

The pirates arrive a few turns later. As far as I can tell, that’s just a cosmic coincidence.

Something is said in the game about the copy button. I don’t remember exactly, but it’s to the effect that the ship’s designers said there would only ever be a need to save the last few seconds of video. Basically, it’s constantly recording as a moving window, and you just need to copy the most recent bit. Even if that’s kind of iffy, it’s a better option than trying to record before something happens. I like how it works, I think.

See, I didn’t even realize at first that there were zombies. I wasn’t viewing the bridge or the cargo area. I just remember there being an alarm, and then pirates boarded, and then some of them left, and then suddenly zombies arrive and start killing everybody. I had to re-play to follow the action in other areas to find out what the heck was happening. In a way that’s good (maybe even the point), but it really made it hard to follow for me.

I might have solved it eventually, but not within two hours. And even though I would have allowed myself to stop at 2 hours, vote, and continue on, I didn’t make it to 2 hours before I started feeling overwhelmed by the task at hand. It’s the same reason I gave up in the first half of Delightful Wallpaper. It seems do-able at the start, but I come to realize it’s logistically over my head.

Yes, I got that all right, I just think this incident should have been somehow connected to the pirates invading the ship.

D’oh! Of course! I really missed this. Normally, my excuse is that english is not my native tongue, but actually I simply was dumb. I even wondered why the button was labeled “copy” instead of “record”. Stupid me! Thanks for clarifying that.

I never played Delightful Wallpaper (there was a negative review by some polish sounding guy :laughing: just kidding) but I solved both All Things Devours and Suspended without help (Although I never would have beaten the latter myself if the internet had already been invented). I’m not sure about Orevore Courier, though, it really is kind of frustrating.


I think the enjoyment of this game depends a lot on realizing early that you’re going to need to replay several times to win and that you need to know what all the other characters are doing. Once I realized that, I relaxed a bit and played through a few times just to observe the behavior of the NPCs, not trying to solve the puzzles immediately.

It’s much more frustrating if you’re trying to win on the first plays through, because you don’t have nearly enough information, and the attempt to solve puzzles will keep you from observing closely and getting the clues to win on a future round.

I also had the problem that I didn’t notice the heat controls at first, so that kept me unnecessarily stumped on how to neutralize the Orevore, but I put that down to my own fault!

This was very likely my problem. I rated it highly despite the frustration, but I think I’d have done better just trying to map out where everybody was and when, than trying to focus on specific solutions.

It’s odd, because it’s right there when you look at the console. Maybe it’s the way the text is formatted (it goes on about the buttons before talking about the dials), but I probably saw it and glossed over it. I didn’t realize there were temp controls until I looked at the included feelie! So you’re not alone in missing it.

Yeah – for some reason after I first looked at the console, every time I wanted to remind myself what was there I typed >X BUTTONS. Which duly listed all the buttons, but not the temperature controls. I spent quite a while thinking that since FOOD was the main thing I hadn’t used successfully, there must be some way in which it applied to the Orevore-pacification project…

I liked this game, but I did have one issue with it: Part of the solution to the game hinges on an NPC taking an action that happens only if you have done certain other (unrelated) things correctly up until that point. There isn’t any particular reason why this event happens, or any way (at least, none that I could see) that the player could predict that it would happen; it simply does.

This is problematic because it penalizes the player for trying to think ahead and plan a solution to the entire problem using the information at hand. I was trying to think of a way to deal with all the various problems the game was throwing at me at once, not knowing that if I dealt with one, the game would unexpectedly hand me an unrelated solution to the other.

I’m alright with replaying a game like this or (say) Varicella a few times to get a sense of what will happen and how I can deal with it, but having my actions affect unrelated things seems unfair, somehow.

The “whisper” bit, right? I had already gone into the walkthrough before I hit that point, although I think I had gotten close to figuring out much of it prior to that. If I recall from emshort’s review, she hit on the same thing (maybe even got it from the walkthrough) as well.

It’s a good point. The game is constructed around needing to figure out what’s going on and when, but that particular bit can’t be figured out unless you get all the pieces in place the right way first. And because you kinda need to get past that point to know you have all the pieces right, it’s a very obscure thing to stumble upon. At least, it appears that way to me.