Hal Barwood

I was very happy to have been recently able to do an interview with Hal Barwood on behalf of ACG. His Indiana Jones and The Fate Atlantis was the first adventure game I ever played (that’s like winning a lottery) and remains one of my favorites. It is not some kind of sentimental affection on my part, mind you (I’m a notoriously unsentimental person). The game is just really that good and perfectly represents the good old days (absolutely no sentimental connotations on my part!) when the care went first of all into the game design and storytelling departments instead of in making things more and more flashy.

So what’s so great about Fate? The multi-path structure of the game as well as ingenious puzzle ideas, enticing mini-games and other surprises ensure that you never tire of playing it. Couple that with the incredible story (deeply rooted in pulpy adventure genre) and the possibility to read the one dialogue of Plato that is missing from my (Dunlop) collection and the result is my favorite Indiana Jones experience yet!


Unfortunately, Hal’s current status as freelance game creator doesn’t seem to allow him tackling projects of similar proportions (or creative ambitions). Despite giving highly regarded lectures on game design and co-creating The 400 Project with Noah Falstein, he doesn’t get many interesting game titles to work on. However, his newest and very promising looking project (and an adventure game to boot!) – Mata Hari – has just been released in Germany (in late November). Sadly, it received mostly scathing reviews there. I’m still hoping that it just means those German reviewers are too conservative too appreciate a slightly different take on adventure gaming. I’ll definitely want to check it out myself. And in the meantime you can check (if you haven’t yet) my aforementioned interview with Hal posted today on ACG. It doesn’t focus much on Fate of Atlantis since I decided the game has already received great coverage in older interviews and there was so many other interesting topics to discuss (most importantly Mata Hari).

Note: Other very enjoyable titles from Hal that I played consist of his other two Indy’s adventures (which were quite different from Fate) and Yoda’s Stories. They too deserve to have written a few words about them – I might do that someday.

Check out Hal's free Holiday minigames!

Click the Santa and check out Hal's free Holiday minigames - they're fun too!