I have to say when I looked at this game I had very low expectations that it would please me. However after getting further and further into the imaginary world of "Isles of Derek" I couldn't help but be amazed how well done this game actually is.
??Graphics: The graphics on this game were really top notch. All environments were well thought-out and executed. Even when animations took over there were little to no problems which in most games can really ruin a gamer's day. Whether it was in a cave or outside near water, the programmers paid attention to every little detail, from reflecting to shadows.
??Sound: The sound was pretty medium at best. It stood out at some points and others just drowned away not even being noticed at all. The music itself was very light but very bland. Worked very well with the game but on its own just wouldn't hold up. However, the sound effects made up for it (footsteps, rockets, and wind).
??Gameplay: "Isles of Derek" is the basic point and click style of movement. It makes the game very simplistic and easy to use. But, it also makes the game very linear and repetitive. I kept feeling too shut in my track of playing sometimes to actually enjoy each environment. Now what "Isles of Derek" does boast is its puzzles. At each area there is a puzzle to solve. Some are easy, just trial and error. But some take the use of sight, sound and looking up clues in the King James Bible. The puzzles made the game in my opinion. Just to warn: some puzzles would be too advanced for younger gamers.?
?Story: The story was a bit of a let down. It was too vague and too short. Sometimes they tried to throw a bunch of the story at you at once. It did at two points of the game offer different paths but it was either game over or continue on with the right answer, which made me feel that they had no use in the story at all.
??Overall: "Isles of Derek" is a very well thought out graphically. The sound is a very smooth add-on. The gameplay boasts the best the game has to offer but, also has its limitations. The story needs more game time and more meat-and-potatoes (in depth). I give this game 7/10.
??Michael Smith currently attends college in Rochester, NY where he is studying to be a meteorologist. He is a self-proclaimed video game and DVD nut, boasting more than 500 movies in his personal collection. Visit him online at www.geocities.com/acoldmind1982.