The creators of Golden Gate, Ix Entertainment, have taken great pains to convey the beauty of San Francisco in their "360-Degree Non-Linear Graphical Treasure Hunt" by utilizing over 2000 watercolor paintings as the panorama for your quest. The watercolor graphics contain a touch of impressionistic softness that really sets the look of Golden Gate apart from other first-person adventure games, and this effect is successful in conveying the lush beauty of the San Francisco landscape.
In Golden Gate, you stroll through San Francisco's famous landmarks, keeping an eye open for the clues you will need to unfold secrets of the past. Objects found and collected will aid your effort, but you are never bombarded with a bulging inventory, wondering where or when you are ever going to use that "one-legged pink flamingo statue." Golden Gate doesn't force its puzzles on you, and it doesn't require a nonsensical puzzle solving genius, either. This is a relaxing quest, a vacation of sorts, that recommends use of awareness and logical talents to solve its sequential conundrums. (One item that is required early is the Avalon Necklace, found after completing the Chart Wheel Puzzle in Fisherman's Wharf. This item is needed to "see" eight video-clues, so try for that one first, as the video clips are both crucial to the game and historically interesting.)
There are over 70 minutes of ambient soundtrack throughout Golden Gate. Each area of the game is accompanied by an original musical score reflecting the unique mood of the location. The quality of music is so high that you may find yourself taking advantage of the "jukebox" mode on the CD and leaving it on in the background of your next cocktail party. The music is a perfectly complements gameplay, and it immerses you in Golden Gate's seamless scenario. As you move through locations, scenes scroll into each other. If this effect bothers you, you can change it via the hidden taskbar at the top of the screen.
Golden Gate is a beautiful adventure, a haunting mystery, and a fine substitute for paying the outrageous rents required to see these San Francisco vistas for real.