Cosmology of Kyoto
Cosmology of Kyoto Developer(s) Softedge Publisher(s) Yano Electric Distributor(s) Yano Electric, Dynaware USA Platform(s) MS-DOS, Mac OS Genre(s) Adventure game
Media/distribution CD-ROM System requirements
- CPU : 33 MHz+
- System : MS-DOS 5.0+, Windows 3.1+, Windows 95+
- Memory : 5 MB+
- Display : SVGA video card with 256 colors and 640 x 480
- CD-ROM : dual-speed CD-ROM or faster
- Sound Card : PCM sound reproduction
- Mouse and mouse driver
The game is controlled by clicking hotspots and text options when appropriate. There is also an element of typing in sentences, upon occasion. At the start, you are born and must take the clothes off a nearby corpse. During the game you will often die after being attacked by evil demons or robbers, and will then go to one of the realms of reincarnation depending upon your conduct in that life. Once you escape hell and are reborn, you must take the clothes from your last body to continue.
As you progress, you discover abilities and items to protect you from certain death, and progress through the city. In fact, you are walking through history - at each point in the game you can consult an on-line guide to ancient (and modern) Kyoto. Many of the characters in the game are based on real-life characters from the city and occurrences in the game are often loosely based on tales from the Konjaku Monogatarishū. The game deals with religion, philosophy, myth and legend.
The game's readme.txt file has the following quote: "Today the outlook and spirit of the ancient capital is increasingly recognized as a key to the understanding of Japanese and East Asian civilization, throwing light on the roots of modern patterns and problems."
The game was authored using Macromedia software and distributed in the United States by Scientia Software.
The game was reviewed in 1995 in Dragon #218 by David "Zeb" Cook in the "Eye of the Monitor" column. According to Cook, "Ultimately, Cosmology of Kyoto is best viewed as less a game and more a software toy, one of those things you plug in and fiddle with. Once you forget about winning and indulge your curiosity, the CD-ROM's strength truly shines." Film critic Roger Ebert wrote in a column on whether video games can be art that "In my actual experience, I have played Cosmology of Kyoto, which I enormously enjoyed, and Myst, for which I lacked the patience."
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