What are Adventure Games?

Adventure games hold an appeal that’s as old as storytelling itself. They allow us to explore strange new places, meet unusual people, and solve puzzles using a combination of our wits and the items we find along the way. One thing that distinguishes adventure games from action-adventure games is a lack of combat. Players must use brains rather than brawn to succeed. The first adventure game came in the 1970s, a text-based one called Colossal Cave Adventure. But there weren’t any graphics, so the player had to rely on the description of the narrator to stay informed about the world around them. At the same time, players could only move their characters using text commands, like ‘go north’. Things moved on in the 1980s, with the Apple II among the first systems with the horsepower necessary to display complex graphical elements. Since adventure games are more slow-paced than other genres, and don’t rely on responsive interfaces and fast-paced graphics, they were a perfect match for the hardware of the day. Things have come a long way since then! Games like Myst, Monkey Island and Blade Runner added visual and audio appeal to the genre. Myst proved to be an enormous commercial success, becoming the best-selling computer game of all time, a record which it held from its release in 1993 until The Sims took top spot in 2000. The genre suffered a slump in the 2000s, but the advent of mobile smartphone games provided just the kick-start it needed, and today there are more new adventure games being developed than ever before. In them, you’ll pick up items, move between locations, solve puzzles and progress to the end of the story. There’s a broad selection of adventure games available here on Gamepix, each of them playable in HTML5 on any system with a compatible web browser.

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