Dark Alleys: Penumbra Motel

Dark Alleys: Penumbra Motel

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During a road trip your friend's daughter is kidnapped by a mysterious man at the Penumbra Motel, the scene of murder and strange occurrences 50 years ago. You must head into the heart of madness to not only find the girl, but unravel the mystery haunting the descendants of the Penumbra family and the Motel grounds.

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Game System Requirements:

  • OS: Windows XP/Windows Vista/Windows 7/8
  • CPU: 1.4 GHz
  • RAM: 1024 MB
  • DirectX: 9.0
  • Hard Drive: 446 MB

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Reviews at a Glance

Dark Alleys: Penumbra Motel

0 out of 5 (0 ReviewsReview)
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Customer Reviews
Dark Alleys: Penumbra Motel is rated 4.1 out of 5 by 77.
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fun, Long Game 4.5 Rating I liked this game! It seemed very long, I played for a lot of hours, and the story kept my interest. It did not have any HOs, but I didn't miss them. The puzzles were fun and easy until near the end of the game when they got a bit trickier. The hint button was nice for checking if there was anything left to be done at a location. One useful tip: There is nothing to be done with the ring on the dead guy's hand. I checked that ring way too many times! The ending was a bit abrupt which was a little disappointing, but overall this game was well designed and fun to play.
Date published: 2013-11-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from MYSTERY AND INTRIGUE AT THE LOCAL MOTEL Adventure game with no HOS, but many interesting puzzles. Without the HOS to plow through, it becomes more of a straight adventure game. LENGTH: Bit above average length: about 4 ½ hours. STORY: Rescue a young girl from the Penumbra Motel, which has a sordid history of murder and disappearances. You find out the why at the very end. Although this is an ERS game, and even though it has great environments, voice overs, puzzles and plot, it seems to fall a little short of the spectacular games they put out for some reason. Maybe they’ve spoiled us. If it was put out by another studio, I’d have less expectations perhaps. That’s not to say this is a perfectly good game. It has wonderful voice overs and uses live actors. Yeah, the mouths aren’t in sync with the words, but since most games are translated into other languages, does it really matter? There are always going to be unsynced mouths in that case. The many puzzles have a wide variety of complexity. Some are unique; others are old standbys with a twist. There is one identical puzzle which seems to be the “standard” for this game. You will see it several times, but each time the difficulty increases. Some of the puzzles may be a bit difficult for novices and the skip button does take a long time to load. SUMMARY: I did like the game. I kept putting off even trying it for quite some time, and finally took the plunge. I don’t regret it. It is a fun game, though it’s not as story-driven as I would like. Definitely worth a DD. Probably more.
Date published: 2013-11-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Spooky Locations, And Characters!! I liked this game with its spooky feel, and dark locations. The storyline is good, having to find your friends daughter that is taken at a run down hotel that just happens to be the location of a murder of an entire family! The graphics are spot on, with a mixture of animation, and real people. There is no, and I mean NO Hidden Object Scenes!!! This game is strictly adventure and puzzles. Still, I enjoyed it. There is no map, and the hint is one that is not directive, only saying " nothing to do here". Still I think its a good game for everyone. Give this a try and see for yourself! Happy gaming gamers!!!!
Date published: 2013-06-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Different HOG I've only being playing HOG for a few months now and this is the first time I've played a HOG that had no HO scenes. I found that interesting, but absolutely fine with me. Some games have ABSOLUTELY TOO MANY and it takes away from the storyline. But this one was perfect in that aspect for me. The storyline was an interesting one. But not necessarily a strong one, in my opinion. The ending left room for a sequel if they choose to do one. And although I am recommending this game, I think they should made the ending more definite. I did like the fact that you had to accumulate certain things in the game to be able to access certain doors. Very interesting. The mini games were simple to somewhat challenging. The hint meter took about a minute and a half to charge. But it was interesting because the hint meter was a b&w televison set. I thought that was cool. The visuals were good overall. It had a dark theme to it, (which was appropriate), but it didn't hinder you from looking for the things you needed to complete the game. There is no map at all. But you don't really need one. I think the only ones this game is NOT recommended for are those who like bright & vibrant colors throughout. Otherwise, I think you should at least check it out.
Date published: 2013-01-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from excellent adventure game I really enjoyed this game. Different in that there are no HOGs but I like that. It did not really explain why the guy was so weird altho he had been in the war - but why would he kill his entire family? or was it the missing younger son? I have no idea... even tho I played the whole thing and enjoyed it all. Why was the girl kidnapped anyway and what was he going to do to her? What on earth was that green dog doing? These are questions about the storyline but did not detract from the game. The tools you picked up could be used almost straight away which was good. Some of the puzzles were quite hard but enjoyable and some were really easy.
Date published: 2012-10-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not A Hidden Object Game I have no idea why this is listed as a Hidde Object Game, there was not one hidde object scene. Good Parts: Excellent graphics. Lots of detail, great designs, very modern. Amazing storyline with great voice-overs. Intro hooks you frm the start. You can tell a lot of effort has been put in to this. Hint and skip button recharge quick OK Parts: Would've liked a Hidden Object Scene or 2 Bad Parts: Puzzles way too hard. This was frustrating for me, as usually I would like to have had a go at the puzzles, but these were just too hard, At times you would have no idea what to do, and if you didn't have to do anything, the hint wouldn't tell you where to go next, it would just say "there is nothing to do here" Overall, even though I hate this developer, I have to admit this is a good game. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2012-07-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good challenge Not too much going backward and forward, great graphics and an interesting story.. some of those magic stone puzzles got a bit boring but still there is a skip button if you wait for it... Good one bigfish!
Date published: 2012-06-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from No HO Scenes Yep, there are no HO scenes in this game. Yeah!!! Can't remember the last one I played that did not have them. The game is good but the mini games really stumped me, but then I'm not real good at those anyway. -Bought the SE and didn't miss the bonus section -Didn't need a SG either -No map, but not needed in this game -Journal, but not needed -Music is the same thing over and over, turn it down -Real actors, that's a real nice change Enjoy Fishies
Date published: 2012-06-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from More adventure than anything else - A guy's review *review based on completing the full game in hard mode* This game plays like most of the games in this genre with one huge exception. There is not one single HO scene in the whole game. That could be off putting to some but, me being an adventure addict, I managed without them quite well. It also helped that it was quite challenging in parts. The downside though, is that there aren't that many puzzles either, so I found myself missing something from this game. Another thing I found a little annoying is at times totally lack of logic. I almost fell out of my chair laughing when the game told me that I could not take a needle from a ball of yarn with just my fingers. Graphically the game is adequate. Most things seem crisp and clear with a few exceptions. Of course as with many of the similar games it is in places quite dark and grey, but it also had some brighter scenes too which was quite refreshing. Nothing special about the animations. The game uses live actors and they are nicely integrated into the scenes and do not stand out too much. The quality of the acting however leaves a lot to be desired. Music and sound could be a lot better. Not that it is too annoying, but it's not that great. Especially the lip-sync is at times awful. I actually thought it was dubbed at first, but when trying to follow lip movement it actually seems that they are speaking what is said, but just being totally off target. Also, voice-overs are uninspired and does not feel believable at all. Game mechanics and hud works well, and here the game is top notch. Also transitions between the scenes and scene-within-scenes are well made. Everything seems accurate, but at times it feels like you really have to be on target to pick something up. The story itself seems highly unoriginal, and because of bad acting/voice-overs it doesn't really engage at all. There is a little background story that unveils throughout the course of the game, but there is really nothing to tie it all together. I didn't really find much of the story making much sense at all, and the connection to the main characters is vague at best. In the game play itself there are really fun moments though, and that adds to the rating. Even with the lack of HO scenes, and sometimes being illogical, it does provoke some mind twisting and alternative thinking. Even though there weren't many puzzles, several of them were quite challenging. I wish there was a little more guidance a few times, but not a big problem. There are 3 levels of difficulty to choose from: Casual: Quick hint/skip recharge, sparkles on active zones Hard: Slow hint/skip recharge, no sparkles on active zones Advanced: Very slow hint/skip, no sparkles, black-bar tips disabled (whatever that means) Playing on hard I found the hint/skip recharge to be adequately slow. No chance for hint abuse ;o) I honestly had fun playing this game, but got a bit tired of it in the end. It should have had some more variety. I'd still recommend this game to adventure fans, who wants something to challenge their brain a little. If it was possible I would have given the game a 3.5 rating, but will go with 4 because of the enjoyment and challenge. For the guys: As far as I could tell you actually play the father in this game, though there are few times where that is apparent. It should still suit both genders. TJ
Date published: 2012-06-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fun Adventure Game There are NO hidden object games in this game, but there are GREAT puzzles (I'll take a challenging puzzle any day over a HO game). The music track is repetitive and does not add to the "ghostly theme" of this game, but you can mute the music. Some of the rooms were dusty and unclear, but for the most part I didn't get lost. I played the game through on casual play and thoroughly enjoyed this ERS game. A definite winner for me.
Date published: 2013-06-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not a HOG/A but a Puzzle/Adventure Let me start by saying ~ What's with all the "let's put a kid in danger" scenarios lately? Lighten up! 1- This is a straightforward Puzzle/Adventure mystery game. So if you're looking for a HOG/A, look elsewhere. 2 - The storyline is dark. A family is slaughtered and a child goes missing. Some of the action is really creepy (man being attacked by a glowing Rottweiler, for instance). Some of the scenes are disturbing (child in cage). 3 - The artwork is good, if unoriginal. A hotel straight out of "Psycho", and the run of the mill decaying town. 4 - Acting is okay, but the little girl got a bit annoying after a bit. Music is repetitive and boring. 5 - Puzzles are pretty intuitive and actually make sense within the context of the story. Recommended because the artwork is good and the puzzles fit the scenario and are just challenging enough to be interesting.
Date published: 2012-07-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Lots of gameplay and some intriguing puzzles The storyline is a bit macabre - there's lots of skeletons and ghosts and bits of dead people, and allusions to child abduction -- and, shock horror!, the most disgusting bathroom EVER. There are lots of scenes to explore. I enjoyed finding various objects and carrying them around until I found what to do with them. The HOG scenes aren't overdone - I hate games that just go from one HOG to another, but this was quite varied. Some of the puzzles are fairly easy, some a bit harder, but nothing impossible. Only downside was the music - actually quite good music but not enough different themes, so after several hours of play the repetition is really getting on your nerves. Turn the sound off and you'll have a good game!
Date published: 2012-06-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from HOPA without the HO I bought this game as a CE and now wish I had waited for the SE. I am a big fan of the developers and am slightly surpirsed at the direction that they took when creating 'Dark Alleys'. Unfortunately, to my dismay, this game is definitely not up to their usual high standard of games and the more I played, the more I felt let down. Unlike their previous games, such as the AZADA series, the challenge and fun factor that I eagerly anticipated and looked forward to just wasn't present here. Unfortuantely 'Dark Alleys' just did not thrill me nor did it offer me the challenge that I expect to find in an Adventure game. It was a long game, took me well over 5 hours but I did give myself alot of intervals. Storyline begins with a missing child #not one of my favorites#, a grusome murder of an entire family and an abondoned Hotel haunted by the past. There are many things I did like about the game and unfortunately many things that I didn't. Visually the graphics were blurry, colors sombre giving the entire game a very depressing look. I did like the artwork and there was voice-overs. Unfortunately It isn't anything we havent seen before. I did however like the live film footages used and ofcourse using real actors to play various parts added some merit to the game. As for Game features, you are given three play modes, a journal, a goal bar which did not work and a hint system that operated well. Suprisingly this game is not a IHOG that I had expected as there were no HO scenes. This game turned out to be adventure with many puzzles and mini-games to solve. I enjoy adventure games but I really wasn't thrown by the overall gaming experience. It did play lie a rountine IHOG without the HO and there was the continous backtracking, clicking everywhere for items to pick up and trying to remember where you need to use them. There were mini-games that varied in dificulty but overall gameplay soon became stiff and tedious. By the time I got half way, I lost sight of the entire storyline and got bored. In a nutshell, what is missing in this game was the crisp sharp graphics, HO scenes and most of all the fun factor. However after having completed the CE, I can say that it is a good SE game to play on a bleak and rainy afternoon.
Date published: 2012-06-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty nice! I have doubts to buy this game when it first came out because of the mixed reviews but couldnt resist the 2.99 USD sale last week. I love it when ERS does adventure games, purely, w/o any HOG games. They are actually pretty good! I like it that they use live actors on this one and they did quite a good job in combining them with the game. Sometimes the conversation is a bit off, but at least they speak English. But this game still leaves all the trademark of ERS: wash-out graphics, pastel color, background music, and lots of skeleton. As many other ERS games, they're sometimes a bit gore and disturbing, I esp. dislike the ghost dog. It reminds me of my cousin's dog way back then which is a doberman. It's not a pleasant creature. Seeing it 'attacking people' is not the most interesting sight you will see in the game. But if you can get past all those, this game is pretty good. I dislike the skip and hint button, recharge so very slowly, I think it takes 4 minutes even on Casual mode. I almost turn bonkers. Other than that, this game is good. You might want to give it a try^^
Date published: 2013-06-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I wish I could do a 90 instead of a 4. The system of 5 stars does this game an injustice. No, it doesn't rate a perfect score, but I think it's overall, above a 4. The graphics were better than average. Story line and flow were good. the puzzles were good, and some unusual or unique elements were there. It was linguistically a bit more sophisticated than the average foreign made games, and it was written for adults, not infants. ERS studios makes better than average games. Just the name is a good sign to me.
Date published: 2012-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not a bad game but needs improvement Good storyline and good length of game. The hints took too long on casual play. The music was spooky. There were a lot of dead ends in the game where you do not know what to do next. The hint button was not helpful. It also needs a map with things to do icons. It had a good ending but the game still needs improvement.
Date published: 2013-11-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty easy, great intro for those new to genre! You must safe your friend's daughter from a killer. This game was pretty easy. I sped right through almost all the puzzles and figuring out what to do next was a snap. A good intro game for those new to the genre, otherwise, play in the more challenging mode to ensure that you face some difficulty. Recommended.
Date published: 2012-08-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not bad but not great either. First off, I love ERS studio games. Having said that, this one is a bit 'off'. There are no Hidden Object scenes. If you're looking for that type of challenge, this game is not for you. There is, however a great variety of mini-puzzle games, excellent graphics and a good storyline. The downside is that sometimes, it's a bit hard to tell what exactly you're supposed to do next. Plus, I seemed to have a constant cursor lag which was a bit annoying. Overall, it's a good game and as long as you don't expect Hidden Object scenes, you'll probably enjoy. Very good atmosphere and graphics!
Date published: 2015-01-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from TOO MUCH SEARCHING Review based on about 3 hours of gameplay. Couldn't complete it to the end. Live Actors/VOS - Excellent Puzzles/Mini-Games - Unusual than the norm. Found them to be, well, puzzling. :-) Did more skipping than solving. Slow skip charge. Hint - Slow to recharge. States nothing to do here. Map - None Collect war medals. Diary - Contains photos, story, clues, etc. Goals - Lists tasks to be done. Visit repeated locations with no direction. I had to use the walkthrough several times. When I'm taken away from the gameplay then I lose interest. No HOS but plenty of items to pick up along the way to add to your inventory. I wanted to like this game but became frustrated.
Date published: 2013-06-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Creepy atmosphere, but difficult to follow This was one of those games where you can end up with a bunch of items in your inventory and no idea what to do next. Penumbra has good graphics, a nice creepy atmosphere, and some decently challenging puzzles, but the balance and flow could have used some work. The difficulty level of the puzzles was inconsistent and I ended up having to refer to the walk-through more often than I would have liked because there wasn't always a logical connection between what you had and how/where you were supposed to use it. Hint system is useful if you want to know when a space is clear, but doesn't provide a lot of direction if you're completely stuck. Storyline was ok, if somewhat random. I'm still not sure where all the WWII references came from. SE ending was sudden, but satisfying. Didn't feel like I was missing out by not having the CE. Also, as other reviewers have pointed out, there are no HOS. This is purely a seek, find, and use adventure / puzzle game - not a problem for me, but possibly disappointing to HOG lovers. Overall, a good buy for a half price sale or use of a freebie coupon.
Date published: 2013-02-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Just OK I did buy the full version but 1/2 way through it seemed to lose the interest factor. I found some of the puzzles too difficult and therefor more frustrating than fun; others were too easy so there was no happy medium. I quickly got bored in the last 2 chapters...
Date published: 2012-10-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from SE gets upgraded to 3 stars, don't bother with the CE version This is a pure adventure game from ERS, no hidden object scenes. If you are wondering if this game is worth getting the CE version (which I played) 100% rest assured that you should stick with this SE version. Apart from everything else (nothing to collect, no achievements, 45 mins bonus play) the plot is a lot better finishing in this version and you will be 100% satisfied about it being tied up. CE bonus went loopy loo on the plot. This game started out OK for me, it was middling along but nothing exciting then in the middle it lost pace (not many new areas, not many puzzles was a bit boring!) and at the end it picked it up again, it also had puzzles at the end some back to back, if it was spaced out a bit more it would have been better. Azada libro was far better than this, being a straight adventure game. ERS concentrated on the live actors and seemed to not put as much effort into gameplay or plot or even some of their graphics. And although the lip synch in the actors was mainly good - when it wasn’t, it’s just so off putting. They are obviously trying to catch up to elephant and BFG with using them but just putting live actors into a “C” adventure game isn’t being different and it doesn’t make a blah game good. This is coming from a frequent pure adventure player, so it's not that I am missing the hidden object scenes. Plot was a mishmash of a nod to haunted halls and every other game – mostly children in peril, and ending been done so many times. I’d forgive the tired plot if the gameplay wasn’t as tired. There was nothing new or exciting or even captivating about this game (apart from some old film footage you could see) There didn’t seem to be many new areas to explore. There was a puzzle which was a twist on the rotating rings puzzle and that was good but you had better like it as it kept repeating, getting slightly harder each time. The last hour suddenly got more interesting and had a couple of harder puzzles in it very close to each other, with some others. I would have loved if it had been spaced out a bit more, so I could have enjoyed them in amongst the same old tired gameplay. Most of the puzzles were on the easy side. There was a choice of 3 settings of hardness for gameplay. I play on the hardest for ERS games as they are easier games to play.(compared to some DEV) But I still got full explanations for all the puzzles even though they say there would be no tips and occasionally I still got the black bar tips which they also said wouldn’t be there. Do developers not know that when you play on advanced you don’t want any hand holding? While I don't recommend it, I'm not going to not recommend it as If you don't mind not many new areas, (a lot of it is rooms) and drabbish scenery then it certainly is worth a coupon or a DD. I just wish this was a good "same old same old" game as I don't mind same old games if it's done well. TIME – main game took me 5hrs on 3rd setting. (no skipping puzzles - I say this to give you an idea of time as if I skipped puzzles it would make the game shorter and I would tell you in fairness to the game)
Date published: 2012-06-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from "Dark Alleys" felt a little like "Confused Alleys" I really like these kind of games when I want to take a break from straight out HOGs or even HOGAs. I bought the CE version, but, after reading the reviews here, I think I would have done better to buy the SE, so that is why I am putting my review here. The story started out very good. The graphics were okay. It might have been a good story, but, after awhile, it got a bit confusing and, in the end, I'm not sure exactly what the story was. From what I've read in the two reviews above, it seems to me that the dev's extra content only confused the story. I was a common enough story, but I like try to find the clues to mystery's and so that was okay. I would have given this game a much higher score if I wasn't one of those people who were into the story as much as the game. For those who like to play just to find the right action etc., I think you would like this game more. I had fun, but wish I had saved my CE money for another game.
Date published: 2012-06-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Hint System spoiled it This was a really good game, but I got very tired of needing a hint and all I got was "there's nothing to do here". Obviously I knew that or wouldn't have asked for a hint! Extremely disappointed. Will recommend because not everyone requires hints I guess.
Date published: 2014-02-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay but not great No hidden object games in it at all - it was quite good but I think I've been spoiled by Raincliff and other Mystery Trackers games because they're brilliant - ending was very abrupt. Worth playing but not as good as I thought it would be.
Date published: 2012-11-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from There weren't any hidden images to find, you walked around looking for clues to unlock other things the story ended very anticlimatically, plot holes
Date published: 2012-07-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Can be a bit boring Interesting story, not much to do
Date published: 2012-11-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from No conclusion to storyline I really loved this game up until the ending. It had a good selection of puzzles. that progressed to harder puzzles. I found the storyline line to be a bit of a mystery suspense. And I loved how creepy/ thriller movie the whole game was. But the ending did not come together. I'm still scratching my head after an hour trying to figure out what happened. Who killed who? Was that his daughter or someone elses? Who was the guy at the end? Is the dog dead? I mean is red ead.
Date published: 2013-12-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from nothing great nothing good stood out in this game to me. It was dark and the programmers didn't provide the option to adjust the gamma. The centering of screen for everytime you needed a close up look gave me eye strain. The music was boring and didn't change throughout the entire game. A pure adventure game was a nice change but I'm looking forward to playing advent/HO next. I'm recommending this.....but don't hold me responsible for your overall fun...you won't find it here. (2012)
Date published: 2012-08-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Very dissappointing gameplay I was so excited when I tried the trial version, No HO scenes and it seemed as if it was gonna be a very exciting game. I had a hard time telling which way to go and where to go. Then the storyline just died and puzzles were not challenging. I thought this would be a great game but t was a huge dissappointment. UGH Can someone please find me a good game. It is harder and harder to find. And NO HOS scenes please.
Date published: 2012-11-22
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Dark Alleys: Penumbra Motel

Rescue a young girl from the Penumbra Motel. Solve puzzles, unravel a long standing mystery of death and disappearances in this heart-pounding adventure game!

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