Saturday, May 28, 2011

Doctor Who:Shadows of the Vashta Nerada

“We’ve gone all-out for the season finale,” says Steven Moffat, executive producer Doctor Who. “Shadows of the Vashta Nerada takes place entirely underwater – something which would be impossible for the TV series, as water is so expensive. It’s thrilling, terrifying, educational and fun. Just steer clear of those shadows…”

The microscopic piranha-like predators who live in the shadows, from the Doctor Who Episode Silence in the Library are back in the fourth installment of Doctor who: The Adventure Games. They really went all out for this game which contains not only the Vashta Nerada, but a giant shark-like monster, an underwater base filling with deadly radiation, and as much plot as an actual episode of Doctor Who. This is the best of the four games by a long shot.
The Doctor and Amy arrive on an underwater colony in Earth's future. They are immediately set upon by what appears to a giant shark who tries to smash the connecting tunnels the travelers are in. You, as the Doctor, have to get them to a safe spot before the monster gets to you. After that the action never lets up as you come to realize that the shark, the radiation, and the Vashta Nerada are symptoms of a larger threat.
If you didn't see Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead from the fourth season of the new Doctor Who, the Vashta Nerada are tiny, flesh eating creatures who live in darkness. In fact when they swarm they appear to be part of the dark, casting shadows where there should be none. They aren't in every shadow, but they could be any shadow. Your only defense is to stay in the light. And within the claustrophobic confines of the underwater base, the generators are failing and the lights are going out.
The player has to solve a series of puzzles, many of them involving staying out of the darkness, and stay ahead of the Vashta Nerada-animated corpses in diving suits that stalk the halls. Lots of running through corridors, using your sonic screwdriver and finding ways past dangerous foes. And, as in the previous three games, Matt Smith and Karen Gillian have provided their voices for the Doctor and Amy. Great fun for the Doctor who fan. As I said, this one is well written enough to almost be a series episode. Not bad for a video game at all.

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