Fascination GAME NOSTALGIA Fascination
Fascination - game by Muriel Tramis - Coktel Vision






* Part 1: Fascination: storyline

* Part 2: Background of Fascination

* Part 3: Bio Muriel Tramis and info Coktel Vision

* Part 4: Interview with Rachid Chebli

* Part 5: EOG screens & Censored screens



Background of Fascination

A triad of games

While she was working at the French company Coktel Vision during the 80s and 90s, Muriel Tramis designed about a dozen of games. Her very first games, Méwilo and Freedom, dealt with the issue of slavery, and it would become a recurrent theme in her later designs.

Less serious was another characteristic of some of her designs. Her work includes 3 mildly erotic games that were released after eachother in three succesive years: Emmanuelle (1989), Geisha: A Game of Eroticism (1990), and Fascination (1991).



In Europe, Emmanuelle (the book and later on the movie) became a symbol of the "liberated woman who would espose her desires and claim her right to please".1 It was a symbol that inspired Tramis and it resulted into the aforementioned triad of games. As such, she promoted women in lead roles, years ahead of a game like Tomb Raider. In an interview she stated her reason:


"I have indeed a temperament of an activist feminist. Since graduate studies, I have always been in a minority in a masculine environment, which besides has not been displeasing for me ;-)".2

Asked about the second game, Geisha, she responded that she was

"quite proud to have invented the first virtual-sex system, via a hologram. The game focussed on caressing a female hologram to the point of ecstasy. It was also a technological advancement of the Studio, because for the first time, real images were used within an illustrated setting".3

In Fascination, the lead character became a female airplane captain, called "Doralice May". Her character would return in Lost in Time (1993) as "Doralice Prunelier", a game in which the slavery theme was adressed as well.



  (l/r) Doralice Prunelier and Doralice May
Tramis about the games

Tramis' was born on Martinique, originally a French colonial outpost against Spanish and English dominance in the Caribbean. Many of her games were based on her personal and familial Afro-Caribbean history, and embodied a strong anti-colonial perspective. In an interview, she commented on the other, erotic aspect of her games as follows:

"In Emmanuelle and Geisha, while I was immersed in an atmosphere charged with testosterone (which had been the case since my studies and my first job in weapons; it hadn't changed much in video games) I had fun getting into the head of a man. I wondered what a man could feel in the context of Brazilian or Japanese exoticism and flirtation."4

"I knew my audience was mostly male, my team were male, so it was only natural to talk about male desire. However, my heroes were female and free, which was not usual at the time. We did all this with humor. Nobody was upset in the team."5

"As for Fascination, I had fun reversing the codes by creating a female heroine whose intelligence was at least as important an asset as seduction, who solved riddles through logic. But unlike Lara Croft, a heroine who arrived later and was created by a competing studio, she did not use weapons. That was probably my mistake!"
6

Graphics and music



  (l/r) Chebli, Chosse, Kluytmans and Tramis ca 1992
Responsible for the graphics were Rachid Chebli, Yannick Chosse and Joseph Kluytmans. Only Chosse had worked on two of the other games (Emmanuelle and Geisha). Kluytmans would also become involved in the design of Lost in Time.7 He is shown in the intro of Fascination when he leaves the building with his briefcase.
Rachid Chebli also created all the artwork of Bargon Attack, and he was one of the artists working on the puzzle-intensive Ween: The Propecy and the hilarious The Bizarre Adventures of Woodruff and the Schnibble.

As the player character could die in various ways, EOG graphics were added to the game.
For more EOG screens, see here.

The CD-Rom version was censored, the disk version showed quite explicit scenes, such as the main character taking a shower or pin-up posters on a wall.
For more censored screens, see here.

(l/r) Amiga intro "Sea of Love" and DOS intro
François Peirano composed the music for Emmanuelle, and Frederic Motte created the music for the other games. Motte wasn't very happy with the opening song of Fascination called "Sea of Love" (Amiga), and couldn't understand why so many people loved the piece.8

Released versions

Fascination was released on disks (5.25 and 3.5) and CD-Rom. It was the first game the company created on CD-Rom. The European and USA boxes show different artwork. The game was programmed for three different platforms: Amiga and Atari ST (1991), and DOS (1992). The CD-Rom version included voices and was translated in English, French, German and Italian.9

Ratings

The game got mixed ratings. A few examples: Amiga Power 67/100, Amiga Mania 78/100, CU Amiga 80/100, The One Amiga 62/100, Amiga Format 65/100, Amiga Action 51/100, Amiga Computing 53, 47/100.10

See for notes here.

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(c) All artwork copyright Coktel Vision
(c) Text game-nostalgia.com 2020