Qin: Tomb of the Middle Kingdom
|Qin: Tomb of the Middle Kingdom|
|Developer(s)||Learn Technologies Interactive|
|Publisher(s)||Time Warner Electronic Publishing, Southpeak Interactive (DOS)
|Release date(s)||1995 (DOS)
Qin: Tomb of the Middle Kingdom is a Myst-like graphic adventure computer game developed by Learn Technologies Interactive published by Time Warner Interactive and released for DOS, Windows, and Macintosh systems.
The game takes place in the year 2010, where the international conglomerate "Mega Media," headed by Hal Davis, funds a government-approved excavation of the Qin burial mound. The player takes on the role of a researcher assigned to this project. (In reality, the chamber of the terracotta army is the farthest any archaeological team has progressed.) One night, as the researcher is exploring alone, a sudden earthquake opens up the ground underneath, and the researcher tumbles into a deeper part of the tomb. While exploring the tomb, which is immense, he is privy to the observations of the ghost of a Chinese scholar, who was aware of the brutal nature of the emperor.
The game eventually leads to a goal the emperor sought in life—an elixir that can confer immortality. Possessing this, the player has a choice: give it to the dead-but-not-quite-gone Qin, who will revive; deliver it to Hal Davis; or pour it into a scale model of the planet. Each has its own result—the renewed emperor will re-take control of China, Hal Davis becomes immortal in a decaying world, or kick-start the renewal of the planet itself, respectively.
Many of the reviews of the time compared the game to Myst. MSNBC claimed that "In a world full of "Myst"-imitators, Qin: Tomb of the Middle Kingdom stands out as a product with a purpose." PC Gamer said that the game is "rendered with a meticulous eye for detail"  while Bernard Yee of PC World regarded it as "a better Myst than Myst itself."
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