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Ask Slashdot: Best Adventure Game To Start With? 480

canolecaptain writes "One of my daughters (10 years old) has become interested in adventure games, and started playing Fate. It's been awhile since I've had time to play this type of game (since the Diablo 2 days), and I'd like to know what Slashdotters thought would be the best set of adventure games to start her on (PC preferred). Nothing too scary yet, so unfortunately, Diablo is out for the time being. I'd prefer one with multi-player so that we could quest together on ocassion."
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Ask Slashdot: Best Adventure Game To Start With?

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  • Titan's Quest (Score:3, Informative)

    by ZiakII ( 829432 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:45PM (#36357320)
    You can do Titan's quest its alot more PG then Diablo, and also has multiplayer.
    • I'd say Zork, but then I'll get chastised for suggesting a text based adventure.

      I find reading a big thing missing from adventure & RPG (MMO's especially). People don't want to read when gaming, but that's half the fun of an adventure game. Pick up the subtleties in the cryptic clues.

      The original & new Monkey Island series (including the remakes) are great if you want something graphical.

      • by ArcherB ( 796902 )

        The original & new Monkey Island series (including the remakes) are great if you want something graphical.

        I'd second Monkey Island or anything from the "Quest for Glory" Series. It may be a bit dated as the first Quest for Glory game is over 20 years old, but the puzzles were neat and the humor kept me entertained enough to make up for the poor graphics. I remember one joke was about a comedian who had lost his ability to be funny. He would sit there and screw up the stupidest jokes throughout the game. Finally, at the end, you give him a "Good Humor" ice cream bar to cure him. He still told stupid jokes,

    • I also thought of Titan Quest (very good game), but then also thought of the Dungeon Siege Series [] (you can probably pick up one of the older (first two) titles for next to nix) and it is a pretty good game. It has good support for multiplayer as well. The older two games will play VERY well on a lower spec PC and you can play some great co-op on a lan, while the upcoming title seems to have some VERY nice graphics and if she likes the style of one of the others, you might be in for a nice hit.

      • Dungeon siege is such a hack and slog, and the interface is atrocious compared to its competition (Neverwinter Nights.) It does have more cartoony monsters than NWN, but is otherwise a bad attempt to make the same game.

      • What about DeathSpank []? What better time to introduce the kid to off-colour humour than when (s)he is still young?

  • Day Of The Tentacle (Score:5, Informative)

    by Cowclops ( 630818 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:46PM (#36357324)

    Cartoony, Hilarious, and not impossibly difficult. And easy to acquire. A spectacular game all around and you can run it right in scummvm.

    Really I recommend all of their games, but I'd suggest that as a best "first" game. Monkey Island 2 is my actual favorite scumm game, but its SUPER hard so not really a good "first" game.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by creat3d ( 1489345 )
      Can't recommend the old Lucas Arts classics enough. They're not multiplayer, but really you'll have a great time with your kid going through them, any of them really. Day Of The Tentacle, Monkey Island (the first 3, yes I actually liked the 3rd), Loom... hours of enjoyment guaranteed. I'd recommend Sam & Max too but my memory of them is way too vague to remember if it's appropriate for a child, ESRB rates the first one as "Teen". Probably best to judge by yourself on that one. Oldies but greaties.
      • by nomadic ( 141991 )
        Loom was amazing, especially when they remade it with CD sound. Unfortunately it's waaaay too short.
        • I dunno, I played all the Lucasarts games for the first time* in the early 2000s, and Loom left me cold. It's a little too "airbrushed on the side of a van," if you know what I mean, and hasn't held up well. I second the recommendation for Day of the Tentacle. Probably the best writing I've seen in a game that has graphics.

          *I spent an inordinate amount of time getting absolutely nowhere in Zak McCracken in glorious CGA as a middle schooler, but I'm not sure if that counts.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:47PM (#36357342)

    The only thing a hack'n'slash has in common with an adventure game is mouseclick-induced carpal tunnel.

  • NetHack (Score:4, Informative)

    by Nerdfest ( 867930 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:47PM (#36357346)
    A great place to start for anyone. It involves a bit of imagination, but a fantastic game, and it's available for free on pretty much all platforms. It's the one I always find myself coming back to every once in a while. No multiplayer that I'm aware of unfortunately.
    • The imagination needed, or rather, willingness to put up with the lack of the great anchor that is known as graphics, might be too much strain for a ten year old. I do agree that NetHack and its companions (other text-based dungeon crawlers) are fantastic games and offer countless of unique experiences, but this is an ASCII dish usually served best to those who have had the opportunity to train themselves a little bit more in the areas of thought, language and patience.

      • by Xtifr ( 1323 )

        The imagination needed, or rather, willingness to put up with the lack of the great anchor that is known as graphics

        If only there were a version of Nethack that used graphics--oh wait! Nethack has had graphics (optional, but usually on by default) for well over a decade; there's even a 3D isometric version based on GL.

    • Re:NetHack (Score:5, Funny)

      by hweimer ( 709734 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:06PM (#36357564) Homepage

      Mother: So, Sarah, what did you learn in your computer club today?
      Little Sarah [6 years old]: Well, Mommy, we played this neat new game
          called NetHack and I was an evil wizard who killed a priest with
          fireball magic and then sa.. sac.. sacrificed his corpse on an altar
          and then came a demon named Yee... Yeeno... Yeenoghu but he was a
          friendly demon and didn't hurt my wizard, but these policemen got
          angry and I had to kill them too and offer their corpses to my evil
          god, and then some more demons came but they were all friendly too,
          especially one who was called a suc... suc... it had something to do
          with sucking, and she took all my wizard's clothes off but I don't
          understand why, but Bobby said that she wanted to make babies with
          him and then... Mommy? Mommy? Are you OK?

      [Blatantly stolen from this usenet posting []]

  • Zelda (Score:5, Informative)

    by supersloshy ( 1273442 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:47PM (#36357348)

    Zelda Zelda Zelda Zelda. Since she's 10, she might get a kick out of Wind Waker due to kid-friendly themes (while still not being completely kid-sanitized) and a slightly better learning curve than, say, Twilight Princess or Ocarina of Time. You can't go wrong with Zelda, and Wind Waker is a really, really great game. Exploring those islands, filling my sea chart with maps of the islands and so on will live on forever in my memories because of the sense of discovery in that game. It was pretty easy to play, too, while still having challenging puzzles.

    • by Dahamma ( 304068 )

      I was going to recommend this, too. I bought a GameCube pretty much just to play Wind Waker (well, and Metroid Prime).

      You can get a GameCube on eBay for less than $30, and a copy of Wind Waker for less than $20 - adds up to no more than the price of a new PC or console game...

    • by anethema ( 99553 )
      Wind waker is a fun game if you take out all the damn sailing. I think any kid with standard kid attention spans are going to be super bored after the first or second multi minute sit there and do very little sailing trips.

      Ocarina of time would be fine if you were there to help a bit. Also one of the funnest games ever.
  • Kudos for encouraging your daughter to go beyond the usual girly-girl commercial sites. [] Although there would seem to be a logical progression from imaginary adventures [] to adventures of an entirely different kind, []
  • by ferongr ( 1929434 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:50PM (#36357386)

    ...didn't include hack-and-slash dungeon crawlers/RPGs.

    If you're looking for actual adventures, then the Syberia series is a good point to start. Modern in their design, accessible mechanical puzzles and a wonderful non-violent story. There's also Amerzone, Myst and The longest Journey.

    • I was going to suggest The Longest Journey as well but noticed it had an ESRB rating of M for language (although I don't remember anything specifically wrong with the language used in it).

      Also, I recently played "Lost Horizon" which although it has mixed reviews (most negative reviews saying it was "too easy") I found a lot of fun to play and quite amusing in places. A didn't find the puzzles too easy, in fact I found them to be a refreshing "balance" and at least all the solutions were logical.


      • IIRC, the talking Raven in the magic universe lays down the S-word a few times and the F-word once or twice. At least, in the version I played. (I remember thinking at the time it was weird that they ruined their kid-friendly rating for a couple of pointless swears.)

        The game also features April in her underwear, not sure if that counted towards the score.

      • by murdocj ( 543661 )

        The Longest Journey was a really wonderful adventure. Outside of the occasional bad word, the overall theme might be a bit disturbing... as I recall, she ends up having to control her memory of her father abusing her (or at least that was a pretty obvious way of looking at it). But for sure it's a great point and click adventure with a lot of fun characters.

  • I was thinking like Syberia or Dreamfall, especially for a young girl. But then I looked at the game Fate and I believe I'm maybe in the wrong genre.

  • by gman003 ( 1693318 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:54PM (#36357444)
    Torchlight. It was made by many of the people who made Diablo 2, but it's significantly less "scary". Good fun, if a bit repetitive towards the end. And cheap, too - It was only $20 at release, and is probably down to $10-15 by now. And it even has a "netbook" mode to run on low-end hardware, in case you haven't upgraded lately.
    • If you like Fate then apart from the sequels (I think they're up to #4 now) Torchlight is the perfect next step.

      Titan Quest (as others have suggested) is a brilliant game, but likely a bit much for a 10-year-old.

      • by snuf23 ( 182335 )

        You underestimate 10 year olds. Sure there are lots of ways to min/max class builds and gear in Titan Quest but you can get through it without an intimate understanding of the mechanics. It's not really more complex than the games I played when I was ten years old (Ultima series for example). I would have loved Titan Quest's depictions of mythology and the classical Greek and Egyptian environments when I was a kid.

        I agree with Torchlight as a move up from Fate though. Easy co-op and nice cartoony graphics.

  • by fangmcgee ( 1716754 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @07:57PM (#36357476)
    The whole Monkey Island series, which ranges from 8-bit to 3D modeling, is awesome for big and little kids alike. Who doesn't like pirates?
  • Beautiful artwork, music, compelling story, etc. You really can't go wrong!
  • Neverwinter Nights can be picked up for $10 and runs on older machines. There is a huge amount of content out there, though the engine is a bit dated, people have made lots of things.

    Minecraft is the mainstay in our household, perfect for a ten year-old. Build, explore, mine, and create your own world.

    We had a good time with Trine, and up to three can play. It's a pretty game, though hooking up multiple mice and keyboards to a PC can be tricky.
    • I absolutely loved Trine. I got the warm fuzzy feeling from it's simple yet nice plot, it has two monsters essentially, a skeleton and a big skeleton, mixed with plenty of physics puzzles. I'm also an oldschool NWN player, so yeah I second that with it's expandability. There's thousands of player-made modules around, some of which should be suitable, the OC is a little droll, mind you. Personally, though I hear good things about Dreamfall. I have yet to play it, but can someone confirm that's a highly r
  • by Torodung ( 31985 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:02PM (#36357512) Journal

    Torchlight is very much like Diablo, but not as scary, IIRC. Look into it. You can turn off any simulated blood, IIRC. There is a demo available at Gamefront [] file hosting.

    BTW. These are TPL's (Third Person Looters), not adventure games. Usually, Diablo and FATE get called an RPG, which is a good enough classification. I almost recommended Zork I, based on the "adventure" genre, but then decided to RTFS. You can only imagine how disappointed your daughter would be cracking open a text adventure, wanting FATE instead!

    If she gets into actual "adventure" games, the HER Interactive Nancy Drew series is a lot of fun, and has light to pretty difficult puzzles to solve.


    West of House
    There is a small mailbox here.

    >read leaflet

    SLASHDOT is a game of adventure,
    danger, and low cunning. In it you will
    explore some of the most amazing
    territory ever seen by mortals. No
    computer should be without it!"

    • Your sig is related to the topic at hand! Except it should have something about it being dimly lit by a monitor, where you're likely to be eaten by a Guru.
    • Re:Torchlight (Score:5, Insightful)

      by SEWilco ( 27983 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:51PM (#36357974) Journal

      You can only imagine how disappointed your daughter would be cracking open a text adventure, wanting FATE instead!

      It depends upon the resolution of her imagination's graphics whether Zork is good.

    • I set up my nine year old with Zork. After the initial shock of at the concept of a game that can be played without the mouse, she loved it. It got annoying after the fifth time she asked me how to spell "examine", though.

  • Oregon trail. Learn history and epidemiology.
  • not multiplayer (I wish it was), but Oblivion is really good.

  • I gave my niece Myst as her first true "adventure" game and she loves it.

    I realized she'd like it when one of her Hidden Object games was half adventure game and she really liked that aspect, so it wasn't just out of the blue.

  • If you really mean adventure games, then I would recommend The Whispered World, and anything from Telltale.
    But it sounds like you mean hack-n-slash RPG, in which case I would recommend Torchlight.

  • by enjar ( 249223 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:11PM (#36357608) Homepage

    It's not on the PC, but it's pretty cheap.

    You can quest together on occasion.

    It's generally not scary.

    • It's generally not scary.

      Man, what patch version of RL are you playing?

    • It's generally not scary.

      Trekking thru Missouri attempting to outrace the black, rolling thunderclouds to a safe location, putting up a tent with shock cords so it remains upright in the high winds, and sitting out the lightning storm and torrential rains in said tent can verge on scary. But, hey, the clean smell of nature renewed afterward is a nice reward.

    • Some areas I've been to feel just like walking into a scene from Shadowgate. I'd say it can still be pretty scary.
  • ScummVM is your one stop for Adventure games. The original point & click adventure games. It's free and available on any platform, but you will require original game files. Many can be had at Good Old Games, as well as the usual less legal options.

    Start off with some of the Humongous Entertainment games. Freddie the Fish or Pajama Sam. Great for kids, and fun to play together. Then move to LucasArts games. Day of the Tentacle is very funny and colorful game. LOOM is beautiful, and fairly straigh

  • If you're looking for a good old school point-and-click adventure game, I highly recommend hunting down a copy of Torin's Passage: []

    Lowe designed the game so he could play it with his daughter - he's most famous for working on the baudy Leisure Suit Larry titles. That having been said, there's some sly humor there that only adults will understand. But at heart, it's a fun family game - there's even a hint system so little kids don't get too frustrated with it.

    The Windows

  • by bhagwad ( 1426855 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:23PM (#36357712) Homepage
    Great MMORPG with no monthly fees - just a one time purchase. Excellent depth, replay value, HUGE and beautifully detailed world and inherently multiplayer. It's quite complex though and I'm not sure whether 10 year old will get that much into depth.
  • by freeze128 ( 544774 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:24PM (#36357718)
  • While not strictly RPG, I loved playing the Lego series with my kids (Lego Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Batman, Pirates of the Caribbean was recently released). There are puzzles to solve and you get to run around through movie scenes and it's easy to play 2 players at once.
  • by Quinn_Inuit ( 760445 ) <> on Monday June 06, 2011 @08:29PM (#36357788)
    It's not super-scary and extremely funny, with great characters and interactions. I recommend the TuTu mod for it, though it does flesh out some of the darker corners of the story. For instance, she should under no circumstances ask Kivan about what happened to his girlfriend.
  • Or maybe Animal.


  • Different angle than what you're asking for, but I think a better game for a child than a mind-numbing hack-n-slash.

    Probably best to start with King's Quest V for the semi-modern graphics. Earlier than that might turn a kid off to the series.

  • If you can find it, Darby the Dragon is absolutely wonderful. It is tons of fun, has lots of creative mini-games, and has GREAT music. My two daughters both played through it numerous times.

  • my 10 year old LOVES Portal, and Portal 2 Co-op mode is loads of fun. It's not quite an adventure game in the pure sense, but the last level of Portal really captured her imagination, especially with the escape into the hidden areas of Aperture Labs. Portal 2 Co-op mode on an XBox is really good, because it's split screen, which makes it very easy to help out when the other player gets stuck.

  • You are standing in an open field west of a white house, with a boarded front door. Zork of course!
  • Wasn't too complicated, and with all the Disney characters and story lines she should feel right at home and comfortable. Plus, it's still fun for older players to enjoy as well.
  • I can see some similar replies: "It depends on what you mean by adventure"... well, no. If you say adventure, you MUST mean games similar to Zork, King's Quest, Myst, Monkey Island, Gabriel Knight, stuff like that. Otherwise, you are simply using the wrong word. This is the traditional, well-established, widely accepted definition; it is not open to debate, period.

  • Are you talking about Adventure games, like Cyberia or The Longest Journey, or are you talking about dungeon diggers, like Diablo and (apparently; I haven't played it) Fate?

    Your answers are going to be pretty crappy, when your question is so ... confused.

  • by nedlohs ( 1335013 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @09:10PM (#36358138)

    Since you're misusing genres, given Diable is not an Adventure game.

    Hence no one knows if you actually want adventure games and hence they should recommend things like Monkey Island, or if you actually want an action-RPG and hence they should recommend things like Torchlight.

    And of course the jerks just point out you mixed up the genres instead of answering at all.

  • Great story, incredibly cute and artistically fantastic graphics, still pretty simple and all-in-all light on violence, available for just every platform under the sun, it's a great choice.

    You can't go wrong.

  • I can't believe nobody mentioned Magicka...
  • fun game, maybe a little challenging for a first adventure though. But great atmosphere and music, unique look and interesting story. It was on sale on Steam for like $5 recently. Still go back and play it occasionally. and the protaganist is a girl, so she might like that.
  • by mattack2 ( 1165421 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @09:35PM (#36358320)


    But like someone else, I suggest text adventures too. There's lots of free or shareware ones too.. e.g. []

  • by stanjo74 ( 922718 ) on Monday June 06, 2011 @09:48PM (#36358408)
    ... is where it all began
  • If you're looking for graphical/point-and-click adventures and cheap entertainment all in one ball of wax, I highly recommend the free remakes of Sierra's King's Quest I, II and III as well as Hero's Quest. They're available from AGD Interactive and did I mention they're free?
  • Stop listing adventure games. They are great but the author meant action rpg's ala diablo/TQ/torchlight.

    • How can we be sure when OP used the phrase "adventure games" three times?

      Ask Slashdot: Best Adventure Game To Start With?

      One of my daughters ... has become interested in adventure games... and I'd like to know what Slashdotters thought would be the best set of adventure games to start her on.

  • Diablo is not an adventure game, not even close.
    Adventure games are puzzle/story based games that come in a few flavours such as the old school text based adventures like Zork and the graphical adventures that include Myst, Monkey Island, and Syberia among a plethora of others.

    I would offer suggestions but they have already been covered.
    But if you were more specific in what you want I am sure I or someone else could offer a suggestion. Particularly, why is Diablo not acceptable but some other game like it w

Never worry about theory as long as the machinery does what it's supposed to do. -- R. A. Heinlein