|Ark of Time|
|Publisher(s):||International Computer Entertainment Ltd., Koei, Project Two Interactive|
Ark of Time (刻の箱舟, Toki no Hakobune) is a point-and-click adventure game with inventory-based puzzles. Players take control of sports journalist Richard Kendall whose journey to find four missing explorers takes him to the legendary city of Atlantis.
The game was produced by Edoardo Gervino and programmed by Fabrizio Lagorio. Luigi Gaggero composed the music tracks while Mario Ricco and Tommaso Bennati handled the graphics.
To progress through the game, players must solve numerous problems and requests using logical thinking. Interacting with NPCs and the environment is mandatory in order to find items or clues; clicking on an object of interest allows players to use or examine it at their own discretion, though responses may change depending on how much information is gleaned. Backtracking between different places becomes more common as new destinations become available.
- Richard Kendall - The protagonist of the game, he is an American sports journalist working for a newspaper publication in London. Affable and informal, he is initially uninterested in the disappearance of Professor Caldwell's exploration team until certain events spur him to seek out the truth.
- Professor Caldwell - An English archaeologist whose research on Atlantis was deemed a lost cause by the scientific community. To prove his colleagues wrong, he leads an expedition in the summer of 1997 to find the mythical city only to disappear from the public eye.
- Helen Milton - Professor Caldwell's assistant who joins the expedition to Atlantis. While said to be an enigmatic intellectual, she is actually sarcastic and prone to hysterics when under pressure.
- Greg Blower - An ambitious billionaire with an eye for opportunity. He sponsors Professor Caldwell's expedition in hopes of making money off the discovery of Atlantis.
- Simon Creek - Blower's bodyguard and nephew. Dim-witted at best and unreliable at worst, he acts as the muscle to his uncle's mind and is strongly attracted to Helen.
- Chief Editor - Richard's boss who urges him to investigate Professor Caldwell's disappearance. Nicknamed the "Slavedriver" by Richard for his demanding tasks, he has a fascination for dead languages and provides much of the mandatory requests in the first half of the story.
- Judith - One of the few inhabitants of Rum Cay Island, she is a world-renowned psychic painter who finds inspiration from her visions.
- Sailor - An aged sailor who escorted Professor Caldwell's group to their destination, he is the descendant of an ancient pirate called Mancussin. His distrust towards strangers is mitigated by their interest in his heritage.
- Curator - The curator of the Rum Cay Island Museum and a car aficionado. He tends to act rather cautious in front of visitors and is very protective of his Mustang.
- Polly Jane - A young girl who lives in a farm near the dilapidated church at Avon. Sassy and friendly, she is commonly seen picking fruit from trees while caring for her cat Attila.
- Worker - A middle-aged workman residing close to Stonehenge. Laid off after the discovery of an ancient monolith, he is unable to inform his wife about it in fear of straining their relationship.
- Tobias - The younger brother of the sailor from Rum Cay Island. An irresponsible yet charming individual, he makes a living doing balloon ride tours in Easter Island while conning his customers at the same time.
- Amir - An Algerian prince who graduated at Oxford with honors, he was set to marry his betrothed until an unfortunate incident leaves him stripped of his title and accused of murder.
- Lallah - Amir's wife and the daughter of a Tuareg tribal chief. She mourns her husband's imprisonment and provides assistance to those trustworthy enough to help him.
- Narraboth - A veteran soldier charged with watching over the imprisoned Amir. Despite his stringent personality, the guard harbors a keen sense of justice and may be convinced of the prince's innocence if enough evidence has been gathered.
- Hakki - A member of Amir's tribe, he sprained his ankle following an accident with his dromedary and is easily agitated by strangers.
- Merchant - Found in a Tuareg bazaar at the Algiers, the merchant eagerly hawks inferior wares to unwitting tourists for outrageous prices.
- Gadir Ahmed - A Tuareg holy man found in the desert mountains. Religious yet overly trusting, he bemoans the loss of his tribe's sacred gem and is elated by its return. His knowledge helps shed some light on Atlantean lore.
- Thief - A con artist who took refuge in Gadir's home and stole the holy man's sacred gem. He is seen in the desert village trying to swindle tourists with fixed shell games.
- Butcher - An elderly butcher of a desert village near the Algiers. The man is constantly afflicted by toothache and complains when stressed out.
- Mystic - A Yucatán shaman living in isolation. Initially distrustful and prejudiced towards Richard, he comes to acknowledge the young journalist's sincerity and aids him in unlocking the secrets of the Atlanteans.
- Atlanteans - The Atlanteans are an ancient race of humans thought to have been made up by myths and legends. In truth, they were a scientifically advanced society who relied on technology to sustain their growing need for energy. Those deployed outside the city found themselves stranded and mingled with other civilizations, appearing as posthumous characters via recorded transmissions. The rest succumbed to an epidemic caused by overuse of geothermal energy.
- London - Richard's place of work. Acts as a minor hub during the early part of the game.
- Caribbean Island - Also known as Rum Cay Island, the area consists of a small town, a museum, and a pier.
- Church - An abandoned church dedicated to St. Theodore in the English county of Avon. A farm can be seen from behind.
- Stonehenge - A monument from ancient times, it hides a secret involving Atlantis.
- Easter Island - Filled to the brim with tourist spots like the moai statues, the island has a lighthouse, a visible airport, and hot air balloons.
- Desert Fort - A fortified construct found in the Algiers, it is the home of the Tuareg tribe. Available areas include tents, a bazaar, and a turret.
- Desert Mountain - Located near the desert fortress, Ahaggar Mountain is where religious figures of the Tuareg reside. It is also close to a small neighboring village called Tammanrasset.
- Yucatán - A jungle region somewhere in Central America. Areas consist of a small hut, a lake, and a pyramid.
- Atlantis - The final stage of the game, the city's interior has dormitories, a laboratory, and a room containing a weather-manipulating machine.