Dark Nights with Poe and Munro
Gameplay 9
Graphics 9
Sound 9

Dark Nights With Poe and Munro is a great standalone spin-off featuring the radio hosts first introduced in The Shapeshifting Detective. There’s a lot of variety on offer here, with six different episodes that feature all kinds of weird and wonderful situations for Poe and Munro. Although the game is short, there are hundreds of branches to explore via the hotspot-driven interface, and each episode also has an alternate ending to keep you coming back for more. Whether you are a fan of previous D’Avekki Studios titles or want to experience an FMV game done right, you won’t be disappointed with Dark Nights With Poe and Munro.

Gameplay: You are limited to clicking hotspots, but these lead to different story branches and even alternate endings.

Graphics. From the beautiful credit scenes to the excellent use of lighting and camera angles, this is a great-looking game.

Sound: Every aspect of the audio is top-notch

Summary 9.0 Outstanding
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Dark Nights with Poe and Munro

Developer: D’Avekki Studios Ltd | Publisher: D’Avekki Studios Ltd | Release Date: 2020 | Genre: FMV / Adventure / Indie | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

Poe and Munro, the local radio hosts in the small town of August, should be familiar to everyone who played The Shapeshifting Detective by D’Avekki Studios. Their show provided some spooky background noise for uncovering August’s mysteries, and the two even became embroiled in your investigation at some point. However, in Dark Nights with Poe and Munro, the titular duo gets to shine in their own six unique mysteries. It would appear that they are not just talented at running what sounds like the weirdest show on radio but also getting caught up in more paranormal happenings than even Mulder and Scully from The X-Files.

Although fans of The Shapeshifting Detective will relish a return to August, there is no need to have played any prior D’Avekki Studios titles before digging into Dark Nights with Poe and Munro. For one, it’s set before the events of The Shapeshifting Detective, and it also features very different gameplay. Having said that, we recommend playing both The Infectious Madness of Dr. Dekker and The Shapeshifting Detective, as they are both brilliant games and well worth your time.

Fans of D’Avekki Studios should already know what to expect, but for those who don’t know them, they are one of the developers responsible for bringing back FMV games. This might sound like a bad thing for everyone around during the genre’s heyday during the ’90s. Fortunately, D’Avekki Studios has managed what many companies back then couldn’t and actually made games that are not just FMV but also entertaining and engaging. Dark Nights with Poe and Munro is no exception and proves that D’Avekki Studios knows how to create interesting characters and even more interesting scenarios.

Instead of one big story, Dark Nights with Poe and Munro is split into six standalone episodic “adventures” for the two radio hosts. The game is more linear than TSD in terms of how the stories play out, but numerous branches within each tale can lead to different events and even different endings. This is neat as it gives the game a lot of replay value, which is something that the FMV genre is not exactly known for. The stories range from a possible stalker in the first episode all the way to paranormal threats such as vengeful ghosts and even a dash of science fiction in the form of time travel. We can’t elaborate much more on the stories as they are the heart and soul of the game, but we enjoyed every single one of them. Fans of Dr. Dekker, in particular, will love the episode that involves Munro volunteering to experience a past life live on radio.

As DNWPaM is an FMV title the visuals are unsurprisingly very good. The developers have shown that they have a knack for making even the most ordinary scenes look extra creepy with their previous titles, which is something that they pull off again here as well. It’s even more impressive, considering the game doesn’t use over-the-top special effects or elaborate backdrops. Instead, most of the action occurs at the Radio August studio or around town. The moody lighting and good use of camera angles keep things suspenseful, and credit should also go to Klemens Koehring and Leah Cunard for the marvelous job they do with their characters. Every scene with the two of them is a delight to watch as they really pull out all the stops for their characters. While it may sound like the game is all doom and gloom, there’s a surprising amount of humor as well, primarily thanks to the banter between Poe and Munro. Of course, each episode also features a selection of guest stars, with our favorite being Aislinn De’Ath, who returns as Violet, the character she played in The Shapeshifting Detective. The scenes with her and Munro are brilliant, and it’s a pity that she only appears in one episode. Even David Homb, who starred in 1995’s Phantasmagoria, appears in one of the episodes, which was really cool to see.

Each previous title by D’Avekki Studios featured different gameplay styles, so it’s no surprise they changed things up again for DNWPaM. In this game, the FMV scenes play out until certain hotspots appear on the screen to indicate a choice that players can make. These hotspots are timed, so you really need to react fast sometimes, but there is also an option to freeze time during these scenes for players who want a more laid-back experience. We recommend playing the game as intended for your first playthrough and then enabling the freeze time for subsequent playthroughs if you’re going to explore other branches. Some of the hotspots lead to slightly different scenes, but there are a few that can change the story and ending of the episode quite dramatically. We were still discovering new scenes during our third playthrough of the game, so replay value is definitely not an issue. Unfortunately, there will still be many times when you are watching the same scenes, but in total, there are almost five hours of video to uncover. The game also keeps track of your choices, so you can see how you compared with other players at the end of each episode.

As is usual for a D’Avekki Studios title, the audio in DNWPaM is also really good. Every line of dialog is crisp and clear, while the soundtrack features some brilliantly moody tunes. The two leads even break into song with one of the tracks, depending on the choices made by players. Finally, since Poe and Munro operate a radio station, a few familiar voices call in during some of the episodes. The game uses a mouse-driven interface, so interaction is limited to pointing and clicking whenever hotspots appear. It is also possible to pause the game anytime should you need a quick bathroom break. Depending on the choices you make and the story branch you end up in, most episodes can be completed in less than 30 minutes, but as we mentioned earlier, the game has plenty of replay value to make up for this.

Apart from being somewhat short, which is only really an issue because we wanted more of Poe and Munro, there’s not much else to fault about the game. The FMV genre obviously has a lot of limitations compared to other games, but D’Avekki Studios has worked well within those limitations to create a compelling title. Some stories can be a little campy, but that’s part of the game’s charm. DNWPaM also injects enough humor into its stories that it’s impossible not to have a grin on your face by the time each episode ends.

It’s clear that the game was designed so that players only play one episode at a time and then get a small trailer for the next episode to whet their appetites. However, the stories are so much fun that it’s impossible to play one at a time, which means most players are simply going to complete the game in one sitting as we did. Fortunately, it’s possible to pick whatever episode you want to replay to make different choices and see different outcomes. DNWPaM is another excellent title from D’Avekki Studios, and fans of their previous games should immediately add it to their collections. Even those who have avoided the genre because of all the shortcomings should check out DNWPaM to see how much fun FMV games can be if done correctly. We certainly enjoyed our time with Poe and Munro; hopefully, this will not be the last time we see them in action.

System Requirements

  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit
  • Processor: Intel i5-4590 / AMD FX 8350 equivalent or greater
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 / AMD Radeon HD 5750. OpenGL 3.3
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Storage: 8 GB available space
  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: OS X 10.9 64-bit
  • Processor: Core i3 2.4Ghz
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 / AMD Radeon HD 5750. OpenGL 3.3
  • Storage: 8 GB available space
  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system

Related posts

Bioshock 2

Bioshock 2

A great sequel that makes a lot of improvements over the original but at times feels too much like an expansion pack rather than a full fledged title. It is still a blast to play and has some great insights into the world of Rapture but don't expect the plot to be as mind blowing as the first. Things really pick up towards the end so stick with it. Gameplay: All the tweaks and improvements you could ask for. Graphics: Very nice but its clear to see that the PC version is being held back by the games console roots. Sound: Atmospheric and moody.

Nation Red

Nation Red

Nation Red is an arena-based shooter in the mold of Crimson Land, where you have to shoot every zombie running in your direction while collecting better weapons and choosing the best perks to aid your survival. It's alright when played solo, but the real fun begins when you enlist the aid of some friends for either a local or online co-op game. It can become repetitive in the long run, but overall, it's a great game for fans of the genre. Gameplay: The amount of guns and perks, not to mention the non-stop action, makes for an addictive experience. Graphics: The visuals are a little bland but still look decent. Sound: The music and sound effects perfectly match the brutal action.

The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart 2

The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart 2

The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart 2 see Nora Handa's return along with the bevy of girls who ensure there is never a dull moment in his life. Like the first game, it combines romance, comedy, and even a few serious slice-of-life moments. Unfortunately, it is also censored like the first game, so all traces of adult content have been removed. Despite this, The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart 2 is an entertaining visual novel with enough content to keep you busy for a long time. Gameplay: The game features a new cast of romanceable characters as well as the return of some old ones. Graphics: The artwork looks great and the game features plenty of CGs. Sound: The audio impresses with full Japanese voice acting and a mammoth soundtrack.

Pixel Puzzles: UndeadZ

Pixel Puzzles: UndeadZ

After the calm experience that was Pixel Puzzles: Japan, I was quite surprised by what Pixel Puzzles: UndeadZ had in store for me. The inclusion of zombies that you have to shoot while solving jigsaw puzzles adds a whole new dimension to the game and ensures that there is never a dull moment. Fans of traditional jigsaw puzzles might not agree, but personally we loved the new action oriented elements of the game. Gameplay: The first ever combination of peaceful jigsaw puzzles, and top down shooter gameplay. Graphics: Gruesome zombie themed hand-drawn artwork. Sound: Moody tunes and disturbing sound effects.

Faraday Protocol

Faraday Protocol

Faraday Protocol is a first-person puzzle game set in the unique testing chambers of an alien space station. The game features very striking visuals and gameplay that is simple to grasp but flexible enough to deliver lots of interesting puzzles. Using the Bia Tool to absorb and redistribute energy is a lot of fun, but the game veers a little too much into button-pushing territory towards the end. Nevertheless, despite some repetition, we really enjoyed Faraday Protocol and can heartily recommend it to fans of the genre. Gameplay: Easy to grasp but filled with lots of clever puzzles. Graphics: The overall aesthetics are very striking but a little lacking when it comes to variation. Sound: The audio is minimal but decent.

Endless Fables: The Minotaur’s Curse

Endless Fables: The Minotaur's Curse

Play as a descendant of Ariadne and prevent the return of the Minotaur in this hidden object puzzle adventure from Sunward Games. The Greek mythology storyline offers a perfect excuse for visiting some exotic locations and while the game is quite easy, it still offers plenty of entertainment. It shares a lot of similarities with the Secret Order series from the same developer, but overall it still has plenty to offer fans. As long as you don’t expect anything groundbreaking from this title, it will provide you with a couple of hours of relaxing entertainment. Gameplay: A solid, Greek mythology themed hidden object puzzle adventure. Graphics: Varied locations featuring detailed visuals. Sound: Good, but not great.

Leave a comment

one × 4 =