The Daily Worker Placement

Thursday, April 26, 2018

T.I.M.E. Stories: Estrella Drive

by | published Monday, March 12, 2018

When T.I.M.E. Stories came out a few years ago, I was completely impressed by it. The base adventure, Asylum, was dark, enthralling, tricky, and very satisfying. There were puzzles to solve, red herrings to avoid, and battles to be fought. There was also a lot of controversy around the game. The Legacy game craze was still in its infancy, and people were skeptical of the concept of a consumable game that can really only be experienced once. T.I.M.E. Stories looked to solve that by creating a system, where different adventures could be plugged in and played. Since my first time traveling experience, I’ve stepped into the caissons for several more of the stories, set in different periods, and most recently got to try out Estrella Drive set in 1982. I’m going to explore this newest T.I.M.E. Stories edition and rank the adventures I’ve played so far, hopefully without giving too many spoilers. If you are looking to play any of these games, be warned, there may be some minor hints to follow.

STOP! DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER IF YOU DO NOT WANT T.I.M.E. Stories SPOILED

On the packaging of Estrella Drive, there is a Mature Audience warning, and it comes with good reason. This is definitely the darkest adventure I’ve played yet. Set in 1982, the receptacles you embody are the perfect caricatures of the period. In fact, much of the story, from the setting, the art, and the graphic design feel like they’re taken from an 80s movie.

The story itself involves something very disturbing that took place in the past. It, in fact, is an obvious reference to a real event that took place in our history. Considering this, I was a little unsure of how I felt about this adventure. The facts were changed slightly, but the nod was pretty clear. If you are going to take inspiration from real events, you have to be very careful, and once you know the event, you may question their judgement. At the same time, they do have the warning in place, and I’m a true crime fan myself, so it’s hard to know how other people will react to the content of it. It’s a dark theme, so just go in knowing that if you choose to try this one.

It took my team and I three runs to complete this mission. We all had fun the whole time. There were a few things to puzzle our way through, but honestly, nothing too challenging. It seemed somewhat clear what we should do from the start.

Hmm, at the end of the day it’s hard to give feedback to Estrella Drive. I can’t say it wasn’t interesting, or worth the time we spent on it. While we were playing, it was completely engaging, but I still think there was something missing. So, should you try it? Yeah, I’d say if you have a team of four time agents, it’s worth $7-$10 each for the ride. I like that they’re trying something new and even pushing the envelope a bit. Just be prepared for a different feeling of a game and if you’ve never played a T.I.M.E. Stories adventure before…don’t make this your first.

I haven’t played them all, but here are my T.I.M.E. Stories Rankings So Far:

  1. Asylum

Maybe it’s because you never forget your first time, but I just love the ambiance and story throughout this adventure. It has the most puzzles to solve and the most satisfying conclusion in my opinion.

  1. Expedition Endurance

I really loved this story. A ship stuck in ice in the Artic and the crazy different directions you go from them. It also does something with the time travel aspect that I thought was really great! Highly recommended.

  1. Prophesy of Dragons

I really liked the characters in this adventure and the inclusion of magic was interesting. It’s not flawless, and definitely a departure from the story set in a true historic time period, but still a lot of fun.

  1. The Marcy Case

This is a good adventure, with a cool over-arching mystery throughout. I like it a lot…I just wanted to like it more. The second T.I.M.E. Stories adventure had a lot more combat and a lot less puzzles. Not a terrible, thing, but at times it ended up feeling a bit repetitive.

  1. Estrella Drive

As I say, I’m conflicted about this one. It’s really interesting and I’d like to hear other people’s thoughts. Out of all of the adventures I’ve played, I felt like this one held me by the hand and walked me towards the conclusion more than the others. It says a lot that despite that, I still had a really good time.


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