Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta
|Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta|
|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, PlayStation 3, Ouya, Android|
PlayStation 3, iOS
Microsoft Windows, OS X
Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta (Arabic: الركاز: في أثر ابن بطوطة) is an episodic action-adventure video game developed by Saudi Arabian game developer Semaphore, and published by parent company Semanoor International. The game's episodes are planned to be available on the PlayStation 3 (via PSN), Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X (both via Steam, and the latter also via Mac App Store), as well as iOS, and Android devices.
The game was originally planned to be also available on Xbox Live Arcade and WiiWare, but Semaphore had since silently delisted those platforms. A different version of the game was also planned as a Facebook app. It has been announced for a PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita release.
When Arab fortune hunter Faris Jawad and his archaeologist sister Dania receive a call to visit Morocco they embark on an exotic adventure throughout the Middle East on the trail of the famous Muslim explorer Ibn Battuta. The trail would not be clear however as Faris will have to overcome an unholy alliance of a militia leader, a weapons dealer and a wealthy antiquities smuggler who are after the same goal.
The first episode begins in medias res as Arabic fortune hunter, Faris Jawad, (Jeff Rosick) appears wounded and out to rescue his sister, Dania (Katie Crown). Once he confronts a wealthy antiques smuggler, Quinton, the plot jumps back three weeks earlier.
Fairs and Dania are in Egypt and are on an expedition to uncover a hidden treasure inside the tomb of Pharaoh Ahmose. Fairs then enters the tomb alone while solving puzzles and avoiding hazards to get to a small box containing Ahmose's prized possession. At that moment, the tomb gets attacked by mercenaries forcing Faris to shoot his way back to Dania. Dania is no where in sight when Faris returns but he is confronted by the mercenary leader, Ozgur. After Faris defeats him in hand to hand combat, Dania appears and scares off Ozgur by shooting in his direction. Faris and Dania make their escape on an ATV while Ozgur vows revenge.
Faris then gets a phone call from a man named Rasheed Al Kalabi (David Lodge) who invites them to Morocco to show them a diary left behind by Ibn Battuta. Apon arrival, Rasheed takes them to a cafe to explain that he is a decndant of Ibn Juzzay who was a writer for the sultan that documented Ibn Battuta's travels. When they return to Rasheed's apartment they find the door open as a thief runs off with the diary (most likely a contact of Quinton). Faris chases the thief along the rooftops and then beats him up. Before Faris can get any information from the thief, the thief gets shot and killed by a sniper which attracts the attention of the police. Faris sneaks past the police and drives Rasheed's car out of the city. Since the thief did not have the diaries when Faris caught him, they are left without a lead until Rasheed admits that he has a copy of it fortunately hidden in the glove compartment. From there, the three head off to uncover the mysterious discoveries of Ibn Battuta, setting up the events for a future episode.
Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta is one of the first games for the PlayStation 3 featuring Unity game engine. Episode 1 was released on May 29, 2013 for the PlayStation 3 (PAL version only), and iOS. The PC and Android versions were also originally announced for that date, but both failed to launch on the respective platforms; in the former's case, it was mainly due for not being approved by Steam's Greenlight community before suggested date. On January 3, 2014, the game was eventually released worldwide for the PC platforms under the title Episode 1 – Gold Edition, in which the developer claims this new edition has addressed and improved some of the game's technical issues. The previous releases on PlayStation 3 and iOS received the Gold Edition version as a free update. The newer version later became available for Android platforms by May 28, 2014. Despite the initial updates, the Gold Edition has been patched multiple times.
The first episode of Unearthed: Trail on Ibn Battuta has been panned by critics and players alike. Main criticisms towards the game were directed at broken gameplay mechanics, graphics, clunky animations and its unoriginality with most critics comparing the game unfavourably to the Uncharted series. It currently holds a score of 11 out of 100 on Metacritic.
IGN Middle East gave the game a 3.0 out of 10; "With its clunky controls, poor level design, and horrible writing, Unearthed: The Trail of Ibn Battuta Episode 1 is an awful mess. The game did get a bit of negative attention for being a blatant Uncharted ripoff, however somewhere deep down I had hoped that it would force us to reject those prejudices, and stand high in its own right. Unearthed, unfortunately, does none of that and fails resoundingly." The Sixth Axis gave the game a 1 out of 10; "It’s all just laughably bad, so much so that there were a few times I couldn't help but explode with laughter at how terrible the animations, gameplay or everything else was." game is absolutely terrible.
- 2014-09-30, Unearthed: Trail Of Ibn Battuta Episode One Is Coming To PS4 & Vita, The Sixth Axis
- "Press Releases - Unearthed: Trail Of Ibn Battuta Marks Saudi Arabia'S First Multiplatform Video Game". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2013-09-20.
- "Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta for PlayStation 3 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2013-09-20.
- "IGN ME Mobile - Unearthed: The Trail of Ibn Battuta Episode 1 Review". Me.ign.com. 2013-05-29. Retrieved 2013-09-20.
- Al-Amoudi, Omar (June 1, 2013). "الركاز: في أثر ابن بطوطة | مراجعة الركاز: في أثر ابن بطوطة". www.true-gaming.net (in Arabic). Retrieved 14 September 2017.
- "Unearthed: Trail of Ibn Battuta Episode 1 Review [PSN]". Thesixthaxis.com. Retrieved 2013-09-20.