The 11th Hour (video game)

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The 11th Hour
The 11th Hour Coverart.png
CD Cover art
Developer(s) Trilobyte
Publisher(s) Virgin Interactive
Distributor(s) Trilobyte
Designer(s) Rob Landeros
Graeme Devine
Artist(s) Robert Stein III
Writer(s) Matthew Costello
David Wheeler
Composer(s) George Sanger
Series The 7th Guest
Engine Groovie[1]
Platform(s) Windows, Mac OS, OS X
Release date(s) Windows
  • NA November 30, 1995
  • EU 1995
Mac OS
  • NA January 1, 1996
Genre(s) Interactive movie, Puzzle adventure
Mode(s) Single player
Distribution CD, Download

The 11th Hour is a 1995 interactive movie puzzle adventure game with a horror setting. It is the sequel to the 1993 game The 7th Guest. It was developed by Trilobyte and used a later version of the "Groovie" graphic engine than that used by The 7th Guest. The 11th Hour also features the music of George "The Fat Man" Sanger and Team Fat.

Gameplay[edit]

Overall, the gameplay is similar to its predecessor's with the same puzzle-based game play structure, but with the additional element of a treasure hunt and more graphic scenes.

Story[edit]

The game takes place 60 years after the events of the first game. It is now 1995 and the player, as Carl Denning, is an investigative reporter for the television series "Case Unsolved." Robin Morales, his producer and lover, has mysteriously vanished while gathering background information surrounding a series of grisly murders and disappearances in the otherwise quiet little town of Harley-on-the-Hudson. Denning's only solid lead is a portable computer called the Game Book delivered by persons unknown to him postmarked Harley, NY.

Plot[edit]

The game starts when Carl steps into the mansion, with short videos of Robin's investigation and the mystery behind her disappearance viewed from the gamebook throughout the game. Most of the videos are short and vague by themselves. However, once the hour has struck, all the videos accumulated in that hour are strung together to form a ten-minute movie that clears most of the confusion. The plot divides into two unequal parts; Carl's journey around the Stauf Mansion and the events that preceded it.

The game opens with the game's protagonist, Carl Denning, watching the evening news. The newscaster reports that police have called off the investigation of Denning's "Case Unsolved" producer Robin Morales, who was last seen investigating the Stauf Mansion several weeks ago. The reporter suggests that Morales' disappearance may be linked to several recent murders and several other disappearances in the Harley area, as well as reporting on a rumoured relationship between Denning and Morales. Worried, but somewhat annoyed, Carl clicks off the television just as the doorbell rings. He receives a mysterious package, inside of which is the Gamebook. Carl sees Robin frantically begging for his help on the Gamebook screen, as well as a mysterious looking mansion. Carl then gets on his motorcycle, apparently heading towards Harley-on-Hudson where the mansion is located. While Carl drives various flashbacks are shown depicting the blossoming relationship of Denning and Morales, which sours when Morales becomes convinced that her reputation as a producer is being threatened by her closeness to Denning.

Carl arrives and gains entry to the Stauf Mansion with the help of the Gamebook. It is at this point that the two plots split up.

Release[edit]

Although Trilobyte stated in 1993—even before The 7th Guest '​s became available—that it planned to release The 11th Hour by October of that year,[2] it was very late to market and failed to meet sales expectations upon its release.[3] Early into its development, a port to the 3DO was planned, and a release date of May 1994 was announced,[4] but it was ultimately cancelled.

Trilobyte had confirmed that the game would be released on both the iPhone and iPad platforms. The release for iOS was scheduled for Q2/Q3 2011, but in March 2012 Trilobyte postponed the release indefinitely due to "serious technical challenges".[5]

In April 2012, The 7th Guest: Book of Secrets application for iOS was renamed to just Book of Secrets, and was updated to include a walkthrough and script for The 11th Hour, just as it already had for 7th Guest.

In 2012, The 11th Hour was re-released for Windows, as a download from DotEmu.com and GOG.com.[6][7][8]

On October 18, 2013, it was re-released again on Steam, as part of a collaboration between Trilobyte and Night Dive Studios.[9]

Reception[edit]

Reviews of the game upon initial release were mixed. Arinn Dembo writing for Computer Gaming World gave the game 3 stars.[10] In 2010, UGO included the game in the article The 11 Weirdest Game Endings.[11]

Awards[edit]

The 11th Hour won the following awards:

  • 1995 New Media Invision Awards - Gold-Games Strategy/Puzzle
  • 1995 New Media Invision Awards - Bronze-Consumer Interactive Movies
  • 1995 International Cindy Competition - Honorable Mention - Consumer Games
  • 1995 CD-ROM Today "Rommie" Awards - Best Graphic Adventure

Development[edit]

The makers of the game originally intended for it to contain more adult content in its cut scenes; the script for the game (published as part of a walk-through guide) included several R-rated sex scenes. Rumors immediately surfaced that an "uncut" version of 11th Hour existed, leading to the game makers announcing that the R-rated sequences, though planned, were never filmed.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Game Manual. 1995. p. 35. The 11th Hour: Sequel to the 7th Guest was created using the Groovie authoring system from Trilobyte Inc. 
  2. ^ "The Rumor Bag". Computer Gaming World. 1993-04. p. 88. Retrieved 6 July 2014.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ Keighley, Geoff (22 September 1999). "Haunted Glory: The Rise and Fall of Trilobyte". GameSpot. Retrieved 28 December 2012. 
  4. ^ "Shipping in May". GamePro (58) (IDG). May 1994. p. 160. 
  5. ^ "The 11th Hour". 27 March 2012. Archived from the original on 27 March 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  6. ^ http://www.dotemu.com/en/download-game/2788/the-7th-guest
  7. ^ http://www.dotemu.com/en/download-game/2790/the-11th-hour
  8. ^ http://www.gog.com/en/news/trilobyte_games_joins_list_of_gog_com_partners
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ Dembo, Arinn; This Old House: The Sequel to 7th Guest Strikes Perilously Close to Midnight, p. 128. Computer Gaming World, Issue 140, March 1996
  11. ^ K. Thor Jensen. "The 11 Weirdest Game Endings". UGO.com. 

External links[edit]