By Alexander Tait
March 24, 2001
Grackon's Curse is a little-known title released by the now defunct Taiwanese
company, Ednovation, in 1995. It is a Myst-like point-and-click adventure that
uses letterboxing in its display. Graphically, it is comparable to Myst, but it
does not limit itself to a slide show presentation. I had problems with the
Quicktime display, where the screen would be displayed in black and white. This
was rectified by pushing the Windows button on the keyboard and then clicking on
Grackon to return to the game. This was more of an annoyance than anything.
Another annoying part of the control was that sometimes you have to take three
steps before you can turn around so be careful to go the right way first time.
The sound effects are limited and repetitive, as is the music. The voice acting
was laughable. It was obvious there were a limited number of people doing a
number of voice parts. Of greater significance, this had a number of situations
where making a mistake led to death (and being kicked out to the desktop)
warning. Saving regularly reduced the frustration from this aspect. This is a
fairly simple game that could be a way of introducing potential adventure gamers
to the world of adventure games. However, for the more experienced adventurer,
this will be finished in a matter of hours with very little challenge.
After watching a video that informs you that you are heir to Castle Crondiff,
which has been cursed by the evil wizard Grackon, you find yourself in the
of a castle corridor. Looking left, you can see a closed gate at the end of the
corridor. Looking right, you see an open gate at the end of a corridor. This
leads to a staircase upstairs. There is also a door on the left side along this
corridor. Straight ahead is the main corridor. Go down the corridor.
Proceed along the corridor until you reach a door on the left. This door is
locked with a pictograph puzzle and cannot be opened at this time. Proceed to
second door on the left.
Straight ahead in this kitchen is a pot on an open fire. Approach the pot and
click on it to read a message with a recipe for the Antidote for the Potion of
Death. It states you will need a periwinkle soaked in rain, a drop of violet
paint, and seven drops of the Spring of Living to create the antidote. To the
right of the stove are three barrels that can be examined. They contain (from
left to right) beer (poisoned), milk (sour), and periwinkles soaked in rain. Do
not drink the beer or you will die. The milk, although unpleasant, will not harm
you. The periwinkle cannot be collected at this time, as you do not have the
right vessel. Turning right, examine the parchment on the table. This is a
Crondiff pictograph-English letter translation. Take note of the symbols. Now we
can open the protected door. Head back out to the main corridor to the first
door. Approach the lock. Click on the symbols for "OPEN" (bat
man/satyr/chicken/snake). You now have access to the armory.
On entering, turn immediately left to open a chest. This releases a recording of
Grackon explaining his ambitions. To the right of this chest is another. This
a rusted lock that requires the Key of Knowledge to open. Examining the helmets
further elicits a message of Grackon speaking. Exit the room and attempt the
opposite--it is locked.
Continue along the corridor until the end. To the left is another gate through
which a flight of stairs leads to Level 2. There are two doors on the right. The
corridor ends in a closed gate. The first door on the right is locked and cannot
be opened. The second is guarded by a pictograph lock. It does not open
with "OPEN" as the earlier one did but "UNLOCK" (lion, snake, unicorn, bat man,
winged serpent, hippocampus). This is the dining room.
Note that there are four other doors in this room (one in each wall). None of
these can be opened. At right is the throne table. Another ghostly scene is
heard. Click on the note at the table, which mentions a Chest of Challenge (no
Pamela Anderson jokes!). At the right front dining table, there is a red potion.
This is the potion of death. Do not drink it! Why? Well, if you can't work that
out, drink it! At the other end of the dining room, click on the suits of armor
to hear another ghostly conversation. Exit the room, turn left, and proceed to
the flight of stairs to Level 2. This guy is sure out of shape: puffing like a
chimney and having to stop twice!
Follow the corridor until you can turn left. Going further forward leads to a
dead end. Turn left and take the first door on the left. It leads to a small
Immediately turn left. Click on the chest. The top of the chest has a pattern on
it that needs to be completed. Notice four spaces in the sequence. This puzzle
a sequential one. A certain figure appears, then appears again a certain number
of spaces further, then again that number of spaces plus one. Click on the left
plank to begin the puzzle. The correct symbols are the third symbol (dragon),
fourth symbol (crack), the seventh symbol (cow skull), and the fourth symbol
again (crack). Push the plank at right to complete the puzzle. Now remove the
Demon Vessel. Examine the marble on the other side of the room. This is the
of Order. It gives several clues about the order of the colors for a later
puzzle. Be sure to turn the marble block to read all five hints about the
Turn to the mask on the wall. This is the Spring of Living. Return to the
on Level 1.
Go to the rightmost barrel and click on the periwinkle with the Demon Vessel to
collect a periwinkle. Your inventory does not inform you that you have picked up
the periwinkle, however. Return to Level 2.
Progress to the next door on the left. This is the baby's room.
Walk over to the crib. Click on it and the seat for some more of the flashback
story. The chest is currently sealed by an invisible force. Look at the
It contains a Lion, a Vixen, an Owl, an Ibex, an Eagle, and some Tarot cards.
Click on them in this order: Vixen, Ibex, Owl, Lion, Eagle, Tarot to spell
VIOLET. Then click on the shield at the bottom of the painting. This lifts the
magical seal on the chest. The chest will now open revealing the Violet Paint.
Click the Demon Vessel on the Violet Paint. Go back to the Small Chamber.
Go over to the Spring of Living. Click the Demon Vessel on the Spring. Now the
antidote is complete! Return to the corridor and progress further. The third
on the left is sealed. The door opposite it opens into the Main Chamber.
Click on the bed for some more of the story and cheesy acting. The chest at the
foot of the bed contains a notebook written by the Queen. Another chest holds a
message about Grackon. A note on the table gives a clue to the pattern puzzle in
the Small Chamber. Click on the vase by the fireplace. A secret door opens to a
In this chamber there is a chest that has a polynomial puzzle as its lock. This
requires working out what digits the symbols represent. Each is a distinct digit
from zero to nine. The numbers can be worked out by trial and error (a lot of
trial and error!). The correct answers are 785219. Click each of the locks to
open the chest. Take out the Palette of Pride, which needs the Seven Sacred
Colors. Turn around and make to exit. Before leaving, turn and face the seven
pots. Click on them with the Palette. Return to Level 1 to the Dining Room.
Add the antidote to the Potion of Death. The potion vaporizes into a key (!?).
Take the key and return to Level 2. Go to the locked door (the third one on the
left). Use the key on the door. This is the library.
On the table is a note that mentions the Stone of Order. On the shelves are two
crystal balls. One of them plays more of the background story, while the other
merely shows flames. Read the book on the shelf. To the right of the bookshelf
a horse statue that animates when touched. Turn to the frame on the wall. Click
on the frame to get clues to this puzzle. Ensure you know the order for the
colors. If you don't get it right, you lose the Palette and have to get it
The correct order for the colors is red, yellow, blue, pink, orange, violet,
green. When complete, the painting becomes a key--the Key of Knowledge. Return
the Armory on Level 1.
Open the chest in the armory with the Key of Knowledge. Inside is the Wizard's
Bone that will open a secret chamber. Return to the Secret Chamber in the Main
Chamber on Level 2.
Use the bone on the door to open it. (This game becomes more and more bizarre!)
Enter the next Secret Chamber.
Secret Chamber 2
This small room only has one thing of interest--a "magic star." Click the top
plank to learn that all rows must add up to twenty-six. Click the second plank
get started. Choose the correct numbers from the choices below the puzzle. The
top row should be 1. The next row should read 7, 5, 12, 2. The third row is 9,
10. The fourth is 11, 4, 8, 3. The bottom row: 6. A door opens to a cache of
weapons. Choose the panpipes. Only they can defeat Grackon. Any other weapon
results in failure when you go to use it. The cache closes, and the
puzzle "drills" a tunnel through the floor. You are taken underground to a
Follow the tunnel until it reaches a red curtain. There is a set of double doors
at left. Get out the panpipes and click on the curtain. A Quicktime video of a
red metal dragon creature appears. This is Grackon! When your panpipes are
displayed, click on Grackon. His head will disintegrate, and he will fall to the
ground defeated. A brief video congratulates you for defeating Grackon. Another
game with a lame ending.