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The Colonel's Bequest - A Laura Bow mystery

Adventure The Colonel's Bequest - A Laura Bow mystery

No permission to buy ($6.44)
Platform
DOS
Release Year
1989
Publisher
Sierra On-Line
Developer
Sierra On-Line
Buy on GOG
GOG
Ah, the roaring twenties. Laura Bow is a student at Tulaney university, and daughter to a private detective and a journalist. Her friend Lillian invites her to tag along to a family reunion at her uncle's mansion. At the reunion, the uncle, an old colonel, announces that his vast fortune will be spread amongst all his living descendants. As soon as the Colonel takes his leave, the relatives start bickering and arguing.

Before long, someone dies. Was it an accident, or is one of the family members weeding out the competition in order to be able to claim a larger piece of the inheritance?

The Colonel's Bequest is a mystery adventure, in which you will take on the role of Laura. Through observation and listening to discussions between the family members, you will have to learn more about all the people at the mansion. The game is set up in a rather linear fashion in that time will progress when Laura witnesses specific events taking place.

Most of the family members will be reluctant to discuss matters in front of Laura, but luckily the house hosts a number of hidden passages through which Laura can spy on the family.

You will have to figure out the relationships between the family members, through observation, listening, asking questions, or suggesting things to others. Every person and animal will have something noticeable that might later on give a clue about who is behind the killings. In this way, The Colonel's Bequest is not a typical adventure, but rather a story being told.

You can gather more information by typing commands, or by right-clicking persons and items. The game also offers a number of shortcuts ("CTRL + A" for "Ask About", "CTRL+T" to "Tell", "CTRL + S" for "Showing" items, etc.). Apart from the main story-line, you can also pursue an additional plot-line to uncover a hidden treasure in the surroundings of the mansion.

Key characters:

Lillian Prune: Your promiscuous friend. Daughter to Ethel.
Ethel Prune: Youngest sister of the Colonel. Mother of Lillian. Alcoholic.
Colonel Henri Dijon: A retired army colonel. Wealthy.
Gertrude "Gertie" DIjon: The colonel's sister in law. Widowed. Mother to Gloria and Rudy. A snob.
Gloria Swansong: Real name Gloria Dijon. Daughter of Gertrude, and sister of Rudy. Actress. Medical issues.
Rudy Dijon: Playboy and gambler. Brother of Gloria, son of Gertrude.
Clarence Sparrow: Attorney to the Colonel. In a relationship with Gloria. For now.
Dr. Wilbur C. Feels: Personal physician to the Colonel.
Fifi: A sexy young French maid to the Colonel. Might also do some extra curricular activities with the colonel.
Jeeves: The butler. A quiet man. Might also be having a go at Fifi every now and then.
Celie: The cook. Originally from New Orleans.
Beauregard: The old family dog. Found outside of the kitchen.
Blaze: The Colonel's old horse. Blaze calls the stable his home.
Polly: A parrot camping in the parlor. Always hungry for a cracker.

One thing I personally quite enjoy is the details going into the game. When Lillian and you approach the mansion through the swamp, animals will scuttle of of the way of the boat. While you walk around the gardens of the mansion, squirrels will dart around, and while you walk about the inside of the house, at times you will be able to see a silhouette move through the windows. If you cross before a mirror, you will even be able to see the reflection in it move.
Author
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