The Hand of St James

1992 Impressions

Platform: Atari ST, PC and Commodore Amiga

“A game of murder, intrigue and adventure, in which nobody can be trusted in the abbey, a monk is dead and the sacred relic has been stolen. It’s up to you to find out who is responsible.”


Well, that’s all well and good – but it seems no one had the opportunity to find out, with this intriguing point and click adventure game that was promised back in 1992 from Impressions.

The game featured impressive graphics, with large main characters that animated well and could interact with other characters via the use of the mouse and a set of pre-defined sentences for interrogations.

Action and sword fight sequences were likely to have been controlled through the mouse as well we assume, with arrows on the interface to move around. However, the main part of the game was to solve a series of puzzles and mysteries to lead to finding the person responsible for the terrible deeds.

You would have to explore large houses, with many rooms – picking up items and gradually uncovering the plot which is causing turmoil in the abbey and village. There are secret passages, rats, animals and villains to contend with.

The PC edition was to have VGA graphics, with the Amiga version containing 32 colours and the ST 16.

Although previewed in several magazines of the time, including French magazine Joystick, Generation 4 and Games X, the final title never saw the light of day. Impressions would carry on releasing games for a few more years until around 1995. So what happened?

More digging and research is required, though thanks to an old EAB forum thread, it has been established that Data Design Interactive did at least the PC and ST versions of the game.

We’ll check with Stewart Green on what happened to the title and will update this page as soon as we learn more. We know from researching Deathwatch that DDI had lost all their backups in a data storage accident. In the meantime, if you know anything more about the game – please do get in touch.

With thanks to Karl Kuras for highlighting and for the scans.


5 Responses to The Hand of St James

  1. I can’t help but think this game was heavily inspired by L’Abadia del Crimen (The Abbey of Crime), which is a game where you visit an Abbey to try to solve the murders and recover a precious artifact. The developer’s previous project was called Crime City, so they do seem to like crime. Perhaps someone called them out on the similarities?

    • I think its certainly possible that it was inspired by L’Abadia del Crimen. Not sure though that they would be called out for any similarities, as the games are visually so different from one another and in their style. My guess at the moment is that it was something down to the ambition of the title, and perhaps it was found to be more work than anticipated (but that’s only my own opinion and not fact :) )

  2. As always You have top quality articles.
    This game was looking very promising.
    I wonder how much it was complete, was there playable code or only graphics were done.

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