From famous LucasFilm studio, home of great adventure games in 80-ties and 90-ties. Loom was released in 1990 and was actually one of my first games on PC machine. I don’t remember how I got it, these were times when getting a PC game in Poland was quite an adventure. Someone had it somewhere. And I got it somehow, that’s how it is most of the time, right?
Loom feels like a fairytale, has something “Disney”-y attached to it. It’s very warm, yet melancholic and even sad at times. I always felt that evening is the right time to play it. It also feels very poetic. You will hear poems, songs. Characters talk and describe their world in beautiful sentences. The story is quite amusing and well plotted for games of that time. You’re Bobbin Threadbare (not exactly a brilliant name, but you’ll later learn it was a specialty of Lucasfilm), a boy being an adept of guild of so-called “Weavers”, that are just imaginary wizards, if you please. Weavers influence the world using their magical staves and casting musical “patterns” – each pattern is a spell. You will be involved (of course!) into some family drama and dragged into battle against terrible evil ™ that’s threating the world. You will help many people and they will offer their hand in return.
The game had some unique point and click interface for that time (SCUMM interface was reigning then). Additionally, you had this staff with music notes on it. During your journey, more notes were unlocked and you could play more patterns. While exploring the world, you learn patterns in quite amusing away. You listen. You’re never told what these sounds you’ve just heard will do or do they matter at all. You have to figure out. You see seagulls flying in circles and you hear a pattern – you have to put 2 and 2 together, and find out it’s some kind of “rotating spell”. You click a sleepy owl in its hole – that’s a spell for night, etc, etc. It’s then up to you when and on what you will use the spells you remember (that’s right, it’s best to write the down, the game won’t help here) – it also encourages to experiement and the game rewards for it sometimes, presenting you with some funny or unexpected results.
Loom was intended as first of trilogy that never actually got finished – we only have Loom, as the first game.
The music is derived from “Swan Lake” of Czajkowski, with some additional synthesized twist here or there. I’m linking to a extended edition of the game, where the music has been remastered. Here’s the original version I remember, though – not so polished, but because of the sound technology back then, feels a bit more “warm and cosy”.
More about Loom –