Gabriel Knight Sins of the Father, more than two decades after it originally made its debut on PC courtesy of Sierra, might also cause those who live by that mantra to stop and take a pause for breath. Here’s a game that was applauded upon release in 1993 and has, in general, been held up as a staple of the point-and-click genre ever since, but for some reason, taking it on in 2015 proves to be nothing but a disappointment.
Sins of the Father is a point-and-click adventure that tells the tale of Gabriel Knight a struggling author of slightly tacky sounding horror novels running a bookshop in downtown and his life in New Orleans as the city becomes shrouded by what appear to be a series of ritual-like voodoo killings. Utilizing shop assistant Grace Nakimura as a researcher looking into the string of homicides, Knight finds himself drawn into the affair thanks to a link to superficial sleuthing in his family’s past. As such, it is your job to explore the city, solve puzzles and piece together the mystery behind the murders. Doing so falls back on traditional point-and-click staples, with the key to success being to examine every object and converse with every non-playable character you encounter in order to gather the clues you need to progress. Doing so is a simple process; tapping an object brings up a mini menu that allows you to do everything from simply look at the item to using it or even pocketing it, where allowed.
The attempt to upgrade the game’s visuals, for instance, is only half successful, with some fairly impressive if generic backdrops sitting somewhat awkwardly with some odd, jerky and frankly android-like 3D characters who look as if they have been lifted from an especially unflattering and early 3DO demo disk.
Gabriel Knight Sins of the Father only serves to highlight how quickly both the point-and-click genre and the games industry as a whole have moved on.