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Tex Murphy: Overseer

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The latest Tex Murphy adventure, Tex Murphy: Overseer, begins in the year 2043, where we meet up with Tex and his long-suffering lady love, Chelsee Bando. Tex has just recently wrapped up his last case, The Pandora Directive, and is spending the evening with Chelsee celebrating their one-year "friendship" anniversary. As the date gets underway she brings up the subject of Tex's past, stressing details about Tex's ex-wife, Sylvia. Reluctantly-at first-Tex begins to recount the events leading up to both his first big case and the biggest mistake of his life.

It was six years previous and Tex had just gotten fired from his first job. Tex discovered that his employer and mentor, the Colonel, was using unethical practices in an investigation. Still young and idealistic, Tex alerted the PI Ethics Board and got the Colonel's license suspended. After joining the unhooked generation, Tex chalked it up to fate and decided to go into business for himself. He took out a loan, leased a nice office with lots of equipment and even bought a brand-new speeder, convinced that he was about to become a wildly successful private investigator.

Of course, it didn't work out that way. Tex twiddled his thumbs and played Parcheesi for weeks before Sylvia Linsky (Rebecca Broussard) walked into his office. She didn't have much money, but she offered Tex a case and he jumped on it. Sylvia's father was a well-liked, respected and recently-engaged neurologist, who decided for no apparent reason to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge. Sylvia refused to believe that her father would commit suicideā€¦it just wasn't like him.

Tex takes on the case and finds himself on a short list of people whose hobbies include turning up dead. Along the way, Tex meets up with a rogues' gallery of characters, including a beautiful CAPRICORN agent (Monique Lanier), a former PI-turned-borracho (Henry Darrow), a homicidal Aussie (Richard Norton), and a reclusive billionaire (Michael York).

Tex also covers a lot of territory, from New San Francisco to the forests of the Northwest to an Anasazi ruin in the Arizona desert to Alcatraz Island. And, as the story unfolds, we learn what events changed Tex from a fresh-scrubbed optimist, into a world-weary, cynical PI who can't take things seriously and gets the sweats over commitment.

The emphasis in Tex Murphy: Overseer is on adventure. The story is a twisting, turning joyride, full of danger, espionage, ingenious escapes and, of course, plenty of humor. The designers paid extra attention to game play this time around, packing the adventure with dozens and dozens of riddles, puzzles and hair-raising cliffhangers, all intended to keep players glued to their computers until the mind-bending finale.

The interface has been updated and streamlined, allowing the 3D environments to be presented full-screen. And, in keeping with Access Software's commitment to customer service, Tex Murphy: Overseer comes with an extensive Help system, as well as complete hints, so players will never have to call in for a clue or purchase a hint book. Also, in response to an extremely favorable reaction, there will be two levels of gameplay, as there were in The Pandora Directive, one for players who want to get on with the story, and one for puzzle fanatics.

The cast of actors, headed by Michael York (Logan's Run, The Three Musketeers, etc.) is experienced and excellent. The script, written by Aaron Conners, is feature film-quality and was the primary draw for the major actors. Adrian Carr follows up his stylish direction of The Pandora Directive by utilizing the new technology and giving Tex Murphy: Overseer a truly cinematic, rather than computer game look.

See Also