9.2/10
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The Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery (1996)

Shortly after moving to Rittersburg to take over duties as the lone "Schattenjager", Gabriel Knight is called by the townsfolk to investigate the killing of a child believed to be caused by... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dean Erickson ...
Joanne Takahashi ...
Russell Mitchell ...
...
...
Baron Garr Von Zell
...
Doktor Klingmann
Clabe Hartley ...
Preiss
...
Von Aigner
Edmund L. Shaff ...
Hennemann
Andrea Helene ...
Gerde (as Andrea Martin)
...
Werner Huber
...
Kriminal-Kommissar Leber
Fredrich Solms ...
Harald Übergrau
...
Xaver
...
Mrs. Smith
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Storyline

Shortly after moving to Rittersburg to take over duties as the lone "Schattenjager", Gabriel Knight is called by the townsfolk to investigate the killing of a child believed to be caused by a werewolf. While Gabriel is away on the case, Grace Nakimura leaves New Orleans for Rittersburgh to conduct research and keep an eye on him. Grace soon learns that Gabriel's case goes back centuries and involves King Ludwig II. Meanwhile, Gabriel's investigation leads him to a small private hunting club, where he believes the culprit may be hiding. The two are pulled deeper into the horrific events, leading Grace out to stop the unrelenting nightmare and Gabriel in a fight for his very own soul. Written by Andrew Kasch <akasch@darkvortex.com>

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M
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Trivia

Although all the in-game video sequences were shot in front of a blue screen and none of the actors actually went to Germany, the German game package still had a sticker on it, saying: "Exclusively filmed in Germany!" to attract more buyers. See more »

Goofs

In the previous game, Malia/Tetelo injured Gabriel's left hand while he was trying to save her. In the introduction of this game, Gabriel's right hand is scarred. See more »

Quotes

Gabriel Knight: I, uh, I'm really very sorry about your daughter, Herr Huber.
Gerde: I have told them that you are the new Schattenjäger.
Werner Huber: You, you were the talisman. Now are you the Schattenjäger now, or are you not?
Gabriel Knight: I am.
Werner Huber: We do not know you, Herr Knight. But we have known the Schattenjägers for many centuries. It is to them, that we turn to in trouble like this. Sepp here, is family. Will you come? Just look around? See what you can see? Sepp and his wife go north, to be with her mother. You can stay on his farm.
Gabriel Knight: ...
[...]
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User Reviews

 
Find this game. Play it.
7 September 2005 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

"Gabriel Knight: The Beast Within" is not only the best computer game ever made, it's also one of my favorite horror movies. I guess you could say it's half-game, half-movie...although, in truth, it's so well-researched and cleverly written that it reminds me more of a novel. Who cares what it is? It's just awesome.

Like other games of its type, "The Beast Within" is very linear. If you're looking to wander freely through a huge 3D environment, wasting polygon creatures with a shotgun, you'll be disappointed. Your job in this game is basically to solve brain teasers and push the plot ahead to the next mini-movie segment. I suppose there is a passive aspect to the gameplay, and I do get frustrated when I can't solve a particularly obscure puzzle and my progress grinds to a halt. But the rich storyline and sharp dialogue - courtesy of Jane Jensen, clearly a talented writer

  • more than compensate for any shortcomings with the game's format.


The movie segments feature several strong actors, particularly Peter Lucas, who makes for a very suave villain indeed. The underrated Dean Erickson is extremely likable as Gabriel Knight; in fact, I prefer his interpretation of the character to the oily purrings of Tim Curry in the series' first and third games. Too bad he seems to be doing real estate deals these days! Oh, and come on, hands up - who else recognizes Clabe "Preiss" Hartley as the evil Caliban from Trancers 4 and 5? Oh...nobody? I guess it's just me, then.

I won't summarize the plot much; suffice to say, it involves German history, werewolves, and homo-erotic tendencies. When I played the game as a teenager, I was a little impatient with all the background information on Ludwig II, but when I replayed the game recently I found it all pretty fascinating.

It's a shame that this type of game - that is, the cerebral type - has all but died out over the years. Hopefully, at some point, the computer game industry will climb out of its rut and start taking an interest in good storytelling again.


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