On the trail of Captain Nemo
Despite the name, this isn't actually a sequel (that job is left for Return to Mysterious Island 2) but is actually the first adventure in a short series based on Jules Verne's classic novel Mysterious Island. It's quite a nice modern take on the kind of games that Sierra used to knock out, such as King's Quest and the like, and which provides a decent smattering of adventure. The player finds themselves in the rather damp shoes of a bold young woman who is attempting to sail solo around the world but who ends up on the titular mysterious island following a storm. The game starts out with her then just trying to survive alone on the island but as she explores, she soon uncovers some quite remarkable secrets, not least of which is the presence of the legendary Captain Nemo and his submarine Nautilus. The basic gameplay takes the form of a puzzle-based adventure, with the player exploring the island and collecting items in order to solve the various head scratchers on display. Interestingly enough, most of the puzzles have multiple solutions, which adds to the interest, while the gameplay is also non-linear and which rewards experimentation. Fans of the book will undoubtedly get the most out of this, with its many references to characters and scenes, but even without any prior knowledge, this is fairly compelling game. The puzzles are generally interesting and require some thought, while the island itself makes for an atmospheric environment which is fun to explore. Throw in some pleasant graphics and you have an enjoyable and quite relaxing way to while away the afternoon.