ktx.jpgKTX-1 is a short cyberpunk espionage adventure game by the developer known as DoorKnobHandle, or DKH. The game won last month's MAGS (Monthly Adventure Game Studio) Competition, and with good reason. Only about 90 hours of work over the course of one month went into the game's development, but it's as polished as many commercial adventure games. The KTX-1 of the title is a high-speed train on which terrorists have planted a bomb. As the agent of a shady government, it's your job to find and defuse the bomb while avoiding detection yourself.

Your handlers have provided you with assistance in the form of a DWA, or Digital Warfare Assistant, which is what the government calls its hackers. You communicate with your DWA in sequences that manage to incorporate imagery from both Metal Gear Solid and The Matrix, and you take control of him during hacking attempts. The game incorporates several minigames, the most interesting of which is a completely new (and fun), dexterity-based take on hacking. Actually, it kind of reminds me of Super Hexagon in reverse.

Most of the puzzles in KTX-1 have more than one solution (e.g. hack a lock or figure out the key code using a sliding-tile interface), and your choices can affect what options are open to you later in the game. That's right--your decisions have consequences.

KTX-1 boasts a custom interface that's extremely intuitive. Point with the mouse, left click to walk, and right click on things to open a context-sensitive menu of actions. Another unique feature of the game is the use of picture-in-picture displays to show you hacked security camera feeds. Oh yeah, and there's a Wilhelm scream in it.

The entire devlopment cycle of the game was livestreamed and recorded, and you can watch it on TwitchTV.

KTX-1 is a well-constructed adventure game and one of the best thrillers I've experienced lately in any medium. It's a free download for Windows, and is available from the AGS Archives.