Jerusalem: An Interactive Pilgrimage to the Holy City
There are four routes through Jerusalem: An Interactive Pilgrimage to the Holy City (Simon & Schuster Interactive): Journey through the Ages, through A-Z Index, through an Eyewitness to Jesus, and, finally, through a game called ChronoQuest. The Journey part starts with a really nice idea: a map of the city with a timeline on the bottom. Slide the timeline button, and the map changes to fit the era. Stop at an era, let the cursor wander over the map, and sites light up. Click on a site to get photos, an audio description, and sometimes a video. It’s all well-produced, with good photos, sharp video, and pleasant narrative. The content is more problematic. A video of an ancient building, for example, is really just video of a model for a reconstruction, but the program doesn’t tell you that. The Eyewitness to Jesus button leads to a series of rather bad drawings which form the backdrop for an audio narrative of Jesus’ life, accompanied by swelling organ music. The ChronoQuest game is a quest for “relics of the True Cross.” A monk, Francis, sends you on your way as you explore the city of Jerusalem – not a bad game, but not the game of choice for an objective program. Jerusalem offers more spiritual sustenance than scholarly substance. It’s definitely intended for a Christian audience, not for an audience interested in an objective, possibly scholarly look at the history, archaeology, and current status of this fascinating city.
– April 1996