by: Sheri Newton
; edited by: Michael Hartman
; updated: 9/5/2013
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With vampires “out of the coffin" in the Sookie Stackhouse series, some search for a legendary potion where vampires can walk in the sun. In the first game based on the series, “Dying for Daylight" you play as a vampire searching for the elusive potion.
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Sookie Stackhouse Video Game Review
Fans of the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris (the book series that the hit HBO series “True Blood" is based on) will be thrilled to play the first Sookie Stackhouse video game for the PC called “Dying for Daylight."
This game is based in the Sookie world where vampires have “come out of the coffin" and are now in everyday (or night) society. This game is not centered on any of the main characters in the series, but you are introduced to new ones that take you on a new story of your own to explore.
When starting this game, you don’t have an option on picking which character you play as, or dressing the vampire up how you want them to look. It is a simple adventure game that isn’t graphics heavy, so the customization of characters and worlds to explore is not something that this game offers.
The main character is Dahlia, a vampire that is searching for the legendary sun potion in New Orleans French Quarter, now known as the “Vampire Quarter" or the VQ for short. The story takes you on a journey through the quarter and then into Memphis and Charleston.
There are four “Episodes" in the game that play like episodes to a “True Blood" season. The episodes included in this game are: Vampire Wars, The Wizard in the Basement, The Glutton of Gilborne, and Inked.
As each episode ends, you see the story unfold further as a visual comic with voice-overs. This was one of my favorite parts of the game because it really makes you feel like you are watching a mini-episode to the series. Before you start playing the next episode, there is a “Previously On..." video recap of what happened. You are able to go into the video archive and watch these again at any time.
The only thing that I didn’t like was that the story wasn’t completed at the “End" of the game. Though there was talk of a sequel to the game, it never game out. I would have preferred for “Dying for Daylight" to finish the story told in this game.
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The story is funny, witty and really plays like you are reading a new Sookie Stackhouse novel - only visually. The hidden picture games and mini-games are fun, not too hard, and have a dark vampire feel to them that adds to the game to give it a truly vampire feel.
The tasks and story to the game is rather easy to figure out. However, if at any time you get stuck and don’t know what to do, you can opt to use the “Hints" jar and choose which you need help with to move forward in the game. This even works with the hidden objects pictures (which is quite helpful after trying to find something and unable to see it). You don’t need any cheats for the game because of this.
Moving around is quite easy by moving to different zones in the city you are in. The map even blinks on the area where you have something to do. This makes it easy to zero in on what you need to do to move forward with the storyline.
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The graphics resemble a vampire gothic comic book with a Southern Louisiana pop of color. Each scene is extremely well detailed and gives a beautiful feel for the vampire world the game revolves around. The scenes played at the end of each episode are also beautifully illustrated and really adds to the whole feel of the game.
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The music that is played on the main menu is a fun song that sounds like a theme song to a show, in this case like it could be on “True Blood." The background music played in the game is fitting for each of the locations or scenes that you are in.
The voice acting for Dahlia and the rest of the characters is really fabulous. You hear these during the comic strip cut scenes at the end of the episode and also with the re-cap at the beginning of each episode.
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User Interface and Controls
The user interface is very basic, but there isn’t really very much that you need to use in this game to move around or have on hand for the gameplay. The trophy room, journal, and the video archive are all areas you don’t have to use often, but it is fun to go check those out throughout each episode.
The different cursors that are displayed means different things, such as when you can collect something or when you can move to the next room. Moving around is easy and the map feature makes it even easier.
The inventory is easy to get to, but the inventory is cleared after each episode. This is annoying, but then again, it makes space for things you’ll actually use in the next episode. If you used it already, don’t worry, you won’t need it again for the next portion of the game.
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“Dying for Daylight" is the first game in the series, so the story isn’t neatly wrapped up and finished after a few hours of gameplay. It is much like the Sookie Stackhouse series where the author, Charlaine Harris, leaves us wanting more (as in right now) and have to wait for a year until the next release. Unfortunately, the sequel to the game has not appeared. One can always hope that it will be eventually developed.
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All screenshots and references from Dying for Daylight.