A Bark in the Dark
A Bark in the Dark is a point-and-click game created by Bart Bonte (author of Chicken Grow, Fields of Logic and more) entered into our 3rd Casual Gameplay Design Competition. This title takes the replay theme quite literally and incorporates a few sub-games that you must complete in order to win. And the puppy? Cutest. Animal. Ever.
Controls are as simple as any point-and-click adventure game, just click what you want to interact with. To move, slide the cursor to the edge of the screen and click. Items are used by highlighting them and then clicking where you want to use them.
Puzzle solutions in A Bark in the Dark aren't always immediately obvious, forcing you to experiment in order to find the right answer. The experimentation is part of the fun, however, and even an "incorrect" set-up leads to something entertaining. Once you gather the items you need it's a fairly simple matter to assemble everything correctly and proceed through the game.
Analysis: A Bark in the Dark has all the trappings of a classic Bart Bonte game: a straightforward point-and-click with odd puzzles and a dash of wackiness here and there. The difficulty is toned down quite a bit in this game, so don't expect your synapses to get in a tangle. You will need to summon your arcade reflexes and memory to complete the sub-games, however.
It was a nice change of pace to have games buried within the game, but being forced to complete them in order to continue can be frustrating for some players. Sure, the games weren't too difficult, but if a player happens to fail and discovers he/she has to start the mini-game over, many will simply close the browser window rather than see the the game through. It's always a touchy situation to mix genres in this manner, but A Bark in the Dark barely manages to pull it off.
Another fun point-and-click game from Bart Bonte!
Jay - Bart has entered every one of our competitions so far, and it is a pleasure to have A Bark in the Dark as part of the collection for our 3rd. The inclusion of the "familiar statue" and the contraption that gets constructed in the game made me laugh out loud while playing this one. Besides the stylized graphics we're used to seeing in his games, and the sometimes annoying bird or bark, it's the injection of humor into his games that makes them so enjoyable to play. A well thought-out game with no major flaws. One of these times, Bart, I promise we'll have a "point-and-click" theme for a competition. :)