A remarkable renaissance tale
Size: 2.4 GB
Platform: iPhone / iPad
Developer: Joe Richardson Games
The Procession to Calvary is a point and click style adventure game with a very unique twist: it’s set in the world of renaissance paintings.
And while the dialogue-heavy game also lends some of the perceived archaic language, it’s delivered with the tongue very much in cheek. Old English insults and exclamations are bandied around as you attempt to make your way from the generic north to the south without committing any murders. Well, until you reach your destination, that is.
The story starts at the end of ‘the war’ in which previous leader Heavenly Peter is deposed by Immortal John, who may not actually be immortal.
After a bloodlust-full war, you are ready to continue your trail of violence in search of Heavenly Peter, in order to, well, finish the job. However, Immortal John wants to run things a little differently, hoping the world will change somewhat, despite making a minor exception for you on your quest.
The game is laced with Pythonesque humor, and your character constantly finds himself in a position where murder may be the easiest option, and this is where the game’s mechanics gets really interesting. In these scenarios, search as early on when you seek oars to power a boat, only to find a man injured by the war using a pair as crutches. Initially, his resistance is certain and the easiest way to procure them is to simply enter a dual by unsheathing your sword using a quick double-tap.
However, the game warns you that this may be a useful place to save it, should you need to return to this point if your decision doesn’t work out. Though if you do choose this path, surprisingly, you might find you are able to proceed… but for how long?
Many of the decisions you make may let you continue for a bit, but the smarter decisions which involve solving puzzles and conspiring with the various characters in the game – from pirates to cardinals – will usually help you to make your way south in a more successful, and indeed, civilized manner.
In terms of controls, the game is a pretty traditional point and click adventure where you tap the landscape to move your character, while tapping objects or individuals will allow you to talk to them, fight them, look at them, or pick them up, adding items to your inventory to use later.
You can also make use of your weapon to move things along, and blows are delivered in a swift and comically violent manner. In fact, the debauchery you see, the language you hear and the violence you both witness and carry out is very much in your face, but for those that have ever spent too long in a national gallery, these scenes are not unfamiliar for renaissance artistry.
Solid game mechanics, intriguing narrative, and odd characters aside, the artwork really is the star of the show. The detail is rich and quite astounding and looks like nothing else you’ve likely played before. It’s like these centuries-old paintings have come to life in the most bizarrely cartoonish way possible. The Procession to Calvary is quite an experience and one you won’t regret.