Game #1: Gabriel Knight, Sins of the Fathers

Gabriel Knight, Sins of the Fathers

What better time to work on resolutions than right now?

Over the past few days I’ve made a spreadsheet of all the games I own (~360). First, organizing them by media type (Steam, GOG, CD, or downloaded as Abandonware) , then removing all the ones I’ve already beaten and all the ones I didn’t have the slightest interest in playing. Finally, I removed games that were sequels of games that I do have some intention of playing. This final list was around 125 different games.

I told my wife to pick a number between 1 and 125, and then also told a random number generator the same task. I figured out, in the list, which of those two games I preferred to play more, and then I would play it until I either beat it or got too tired of it. I will hopefully keep this up until I’ve finally played through them all, which I figure will take me the rest of my known life.

Gabriel Knight, Voodoo

Game #1

So, lucky me, the first pick was Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers! I remember playing Gabriel Knight back in the hayday of Sierra, and it being the first game that ever made me literally jump out of my seat. Released in 1993, I was 12 years old, and so have may been a little young for the more adult themes portrayed in the game, but as an adult, I am more than willing to jump back in and catch all the Voodoo goodness. All I remember are maybe a few scenes and the game being, well, good.

So I quickly downloaded the files off of GOG, set up DOSBOX’s configuration file so that it would be optimized, read up on the meager manual, and fired it up.

Gabriel Knight

The first thing I notice: Holy crap! Voice acting! Out of everything I remember, I don’t remember anybody in the game speaking a word! When did this happen?! Apparently, it happened on the CD-ROM release, also back in 1993. I must not have had that version. So then I probably had the *gasp* 11 3.5″ Floppy Disks! 11. Holy heck. I haven’t had a floppy disk drive in years! This probably took hours to install.

The game apparently came with a comic book, as referenced by the manual, to give some back story, but GOG doesn’t have that. I’ll have to eventually dig that up out of the internet somewhere. I’m sure it’s not that long, but knowing these old Sierra games, it may be important.

Gabriel Knight

My wife quickly points out that A) Gabriel sounds like a douchebag (and I agree… he’s not exactly a moral upstanding pillar of society) and B) that the character of Grace REALLY sounds like that actress from King of Queens. Now, remember, this is 1993, about 10 years before King of Queens. So, on a whim, I look it up and WHAT?!! Not only is she right and the character of Grace is Leah Remini, but Gabriel Knight is voiced by none other than Tim Freaking Curry! But wait, there’s more! Act now and you also get the voice of Gabriel’s best friend Detective Mosely played by Mark Hamill! Seriously.

So, I haven’t decided whether to do an essential text-based Let’s Play or not, and just give my reactions along the way. But, for all those playing along at home, here are some of the shenanigans I’ve made Gabriel get into so far: hitting on his assistant, stealing a priest’s shirt from a priest’s closet, having a mime be chased by a cop, try to talk with a woman who is obviously already talking with her boyfriend, trick the misogynist Detective into having a photograph taken while Gabriel photocopies evidence, asking his Grandmother a lot of really personal questions, be really attracted to a woman in a limousine, and showing a picture of a dead body to literally every person I come across. That’s just Day 1.

Gabriel Knight, mime

This is going to be fun.

// Ocho

P.S. – Oh, and Michael Dorn, too!

Next: Gabriel Knight: Day 2

Huge Ultima and Wing Commander Sale at

I’m a sucker for a good game sale. A total sucker. Once I found out about Steam, Impulse, and GOG, my compulsions take over and I get hit with a huge burst of nostalgia. Well, right now over at there is a sale that was giving off a siren song that was way too hard to pass up.

Two iconic game series from the 1980’s and 1990’s, Wing Commander and Ultima, are at a steep 50% discount until Monday June 4th at midnight (EDT). $3 per game pack is essentially my pricepoint, so… I picked up the whole lot. For the record, thats Ultima Underworld 1&2, Ultima 1+2+3, Ultima 4+5+6, Ultima 7 Complete*, Ultima 8 Gold,  Wing Commander 1+2, Wing Commander 3, Wing Commander 4*, and Wing Commander Privateer. That’s $27 for more great nostalgic hours of gaming than you could shake a proverbial stick at. (* necessary)

Ultima 7 Complete tops the list as being my favorite game. Period. It has also been quoted by the esteemed Richard Garriott as being the pinnacle of the Ultima series, so he agrees, too:

Ultima VII represented the pinnacle of virtual world simulation where I really felt I had done the best job of interactive storytelling and of world detailing to create a play space and a play environment and reasons to be there. I felt that was the most masterfully executed of the Ultima series, so to speak.” – Richard Garriott in an interview with

I was ridiculously excited when the movie Avatar came out, until I realized it was just Pocahontas with blue aliens and nothing to do with Ultima…

I 100% agree. Every Ultima game on sale right now is a great game, but especially Ultima 7. I hate to say, but the only Ultima game that doesn’t make the cut as far as quality (and the sale) was Ultima 9. Maybe it was EA’s interference but Ultima 9, storywise, was just not that good of a game.

Wing Commander 4 also stands apart as being the best of the Wing Commander series. Not necessarily for it’s gameplay, but for it’s ridiculously stellar cast list (Notice that I just linked to it’s IMDB page). If there is any game that could claim to be an interactive movie, this one is it!

Mark Hamill, Malcolm McDowell, John Rhys-Davies, and Tom Wilson make this more than just a game, and $3 is a steal (although Wing Commander 3 also stars the inimitable Tim Curry, I still prefer Wing Commander 4).

Make popcorn and bring a date. If they had made the Wing Commander movie with THIS cast, it would’ve been a MUCH better movie.

Game well, my friends. Game well.

\\ Ocho