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Anchorhead

by Michael Gentry profile

Horror
1998

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Reviews and Ratings

5 star:
(222)
4 star:
(60)
3 star:
(9)
2 star:
(8)
1 star:
(1)
Average Rating:
Number of Ratings: 300
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- gildedSnail, March 17, 2019

- e.peach, March 16, 2019

- bradleyswissman (Virginia, US), February 8, 2019

- getlostdont, February 4, 2019

- Stian, January 22, 2019

- seltzer, January 16, 2019

- Joey Jones (UK), January 7, 2019

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
Unfair, January 7, 2019
I'm not at all sure that Anchorhead has any "fair" puzzles in Emily Short's sense. https://xyzzyawards.org/?p=386

I played Anchorhead about four-ish years ago, but I gave up on it and used the "Guided Tour" walkthrough linked from IFDB. I never felt like I could trust that I was actually solving a puzzle. For many of the puzzles I "solved" by following the Guided Tour, I never understood the solutions at all.

Even for Anchorhead's relatively accessible puzzles, the vast majority of them only make sense in "adventure-game logic" (e.g. the very first puzzle of the game, (Spoiler - click to show)breaking into the real-estate office), but those puzzles are surrounded by red-herring "you can't solve this yet for no known reason" puzzles, so it's unfair to expect the player to apply adventure-game logic to just that puzzle and not any of the other red-herring puzzles.

Good puzzle solutions need to make sense in hindsight. Why does it make sense to break into the (Spoiler - click to show)real-estate office, and not the (Spoiler - click to show)asylum, or the slaughterhouse, or the church, or whatever? Why can I break in on Day 3 but not on Day 2? It just never makes sense.

I'd give Anchorhead one star, but its prose and story are pretty good. So, do as I did: follow mjhayes' Guided Tour. Don't worry one second over the puzzles. Just enjoy the ride. (Note that the Guided Tour hasn't been updated for the 2018 re-release; you'll have to use the 1998 original release, instead.)

- gblekkenhorst, December 12, 2018

- Zach Shifflett (VA, United States), December 11, 2018

- oscar-78, December 5, 2018

- Vigorish (Bradenton, Florida ), November 15, 2018

- miruial, October 15, 2018

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
Can't describe how brilliant this is! , September 22, 2018
by Froggy (UK)
Related reviews: Played 2018, Favourites
Oh my gosh, Anchorhead is absolutely fantastic. I played the original 1998 version and I loved every second of it. Played it for a day straight and just couldn't put it down; I tried to go to bed at one point and just ended up getting up two hours later to finish it. The writing weaves an incredibly beautiful and atmospheric description of each and every area, character, item - honestly I don't think this game is lacking in any aspect whatsoever. You can examine pretty much everything and everyone, and find tantalising clues and information everywhere you go. The history and backlore is rich and detailed - I found myself starting a set of notes just so that I could keep track of things and make links and connections, which made it even more exciting! The story builds layer upon layer of tension, beginning with just a slight unease and ramping up the mystery and thrill with each and every piece of information that you uncover. It's challenging, engaging, exciting, terrifying, heartwarming, and utterly brilliant.

Just make sure to save fairly regularly; you never know what you're going to find.
Note: this review is based on older version of the game.

- Spike, June 30, 2018

- Seth Fisher (Texas), June 27, 2018

- Stas, April 17, 2018

- csitrin, April 16, 2018

- faffpaper, April 11, 2018

- becdot, March 26, 2018

- 1PainfulPocket, January 9, 2018

- tylermac92, January 9, 2018

- airylef, December 18, 2017

- Hrothdel, December 10, 2017

- Prosilire (New York City), December 3, 2017


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