Sins of the Fathers was released cross-format as both a single CD-ROM disc as well as the Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers (Floppy) version. The CD-ROM version included voice-acting by Tim Curry, Mark Hamill, Michael Dorn, Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., and Leah Remini among others. The CD-ROM version also included video sequences that the floppy version instead included as a sequence of still images.
Sins of the Fathers is set primarily in and around New Orleans and includes such real life locations as the French Quarter, Tulane University, Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, Lake Pontchartrain and St. Louis Cemetery #1. The game also includes locations in Bavaria and Africa.
PlotEditThe game follows Gabriel as he insinuates himself into the police investigation into a spate of killings which apparently have voodoo overtones, hoping to use the investigation as the basis of a new novel. While touring the most recent crime scene with his childhood friend, Detective Mosely, he finds part of a pattern around the murder victims and recovers a scale he believes belongs to the murderer's snake. Also at the crime scene, he encounters rich socialite Malia Gedde, whom he becomes infatuated with, though she appears unrelated to the crime spree.
Gabriel reconstructs the pattern around the bodies, a veve, which the police have neglected to do, and presents his work to a Tulane professor Hartridge who confirms it is an act of real voodoo practitioners, contrary to the police theory that the voodoo is merely a cover for an underground gang war. Gabriel investigates local voodoo-related people for a link, including Dr John, owner of a voodoo museum, Magentia Moonbeam, a local voodooiene, and Madame Cazaunoux, an old creole woman. After being attacked by Dr. John's snake, he concludes that snake is likely the one from the crime scene, and hence Dr John is involved. With the help of Moonbeam, Gabriel decodes a message left in the cemetery for Dr John, hence discovering how the voodoo group sends its messages. Gabriel also obtains, by nefarious means, a copy of Cazanoux's bracelet, which she claims is enough for entrance to voodoo rituals. The professor at Tulane contacts Gabriel to tell him of the veve's origin, but is murdered before he can do so, leaving behind only a cryptic note referring to the Agris Tribe from Benin.
Meanwhile, Gabriel has begun receiving visions in his dreams of occult nature, and is contacted by a German man claiming to be a distant relative. His grandmother tells him that his grandfather's original name was Heinz Ritter, and hence the man calling him, Wolfgang, is his real great uncle. Wolfgang tries to persuade Gabriel that he is in mortal danger based on visions he's had, but Gabriel ignores him. Wolfgang also tells him that his family is a line of Schattenjagers ("shadow hunter" in German) who fight supernatural beings.
Gabriel attempts to initiate a romantic relationship with Malia Gedde, first by impersonating a police officer, and then by deliberately encountering Malia at her family's tomb. Though initially he's rebuffed, Malia shows up at Gabriel's bookstore, St George's Books, and the two sleep together, much to the consternation of Gabriel's employee Grace Nakimura.
Mosely invites Gabriel to sit in on an interrogation of a confidential informant, Crash, who knows about the voodoo killings. Though Crash doesn't help the police, Gabriel follows him and observes him speaking with a drummer in Jackson Square. Gabriel then follows Crash into the nearby cathedral and confronts him with the voodoo object he got from Cazaunoux. Crash admits that he knows the voodoo cult, but he knows nothing more. Crash, suspected by the cult to have spoken to the police, has been poisoned and dies, but Gabriel makes a copy of his snake tattoo, which Crash says is the mark the cult recognizes.
Gabriel receives the journal of his ancestor, Gunter Ritter, in a parcel from Wolfgang. Upon reading it, he recognizes that the murders Gunter investigated in the late 17th century seem to be related to the Voodoo Murders. The journal tells how Gunter fell in love with a slave girl, Tetelo, who was also the head of a supernatural murderous cult. Gunter used the Ritter family talisman to embue Tetelo with a tremendous amount of power, which she uses to murder all who oppose her. The talisman, the key to schattenjager effectiveness, was lost.
By decoding the drum message being sent by the rada drummer in Jackson Square, Gabriel deduces that Dr John will be attending a conclave that night in the Bayou St John. He leaves a message on the wall instructing Dr John to bring a small coffin with him. Gabriel places a wireless tracker in the coffin, and follows the signal to the conclave. He attempts to infiltrate the ritual and observe the murder, but is recognized by Dr. John, who drugs him with an airborne powder. The ritual mentions Tetelo by name, confirming that Gunter Ritter's case involved the same cult. Though dazed, Gabriel recognizes the woman conducting the ritual as Malia, though she is being possessed ("ridden") by the spirit of Tetelo. Grace, having followed Gabriel, pulls him to safety, though it is unclear whether the cult wanted him dead in the first place.
Gabriel returns to the Gedde tomb, believing that perhaps the Ritter talisman is there, but is knocked out by someone in the dark. He opens a central door and finds the body of Mosely. Believing his life is in immediate danger, he books a flight to Rittersberg, Germany. However, arriving there, he discovers that Wolfgang has already left to find Tetelo's base in the African People's Republic of Benin. Gabriel performs the induction ceremony to become a schattenjager, and then follows his great uncle's path to Benin. There he finds the Ritter talisman in a ceremonial table, but only after Wolfgang is killed by one of the many zombies that protect the remains.
Armed with the talisman and knowing that the voodoo hounfour is underneath Jackson Square, Gabriel returns to New Orleans, where he finds a letter from Malia telling him that Tetelo has abducted Grace. Mosely, alive and well, appears, and they devise a plan to infiltrate the hounfour separately. Gabriel does so, finding costumes for the two of them, and locates Grace. As the ritual to kill Grace begins, Gabriel reveals himself, and Mosely shoots Dr John. Tetelo, in Malia's body, goes to kill Mosely, but Gabriel gives him the talisman to protect him and Grace. Unprotected, Gabriel is dragged to the ritual table by Tetelo, who intends to kill him, but she is temporarily thwarted by Malia, giving Gabriel the chance to destroy the idol that is the source of Tetelo's power. A fissure opens in the earth, and Gabriel is presented with the choice to try to save Malia or to kill her. In either case, Malia falls to her death.
Sins of the Fathers is a point-and-click adventure game, played from a third-person perspective. Its story unfolds over a sequence of "days", each of which has a required set of actions to be performed before proceeding to the next. In this way, the game proceeds mostly linearly, since the puzzles on a given "day" must be completed in order to reach the next day. However, within each day play may be nonlinear. Throughout the game a running score is added to as new challenges (both required and optional) are completed. Unlike newer graphical adventure games that use context-sensitive cursors that change based on what the cursor is hovering over, Sins of the fathers uses "dumb icons" or "dumb cursors" in which the correct cursor must be chosen for a specific interaction with an on screen object. The various cursors are accessed by either selecting the respective icon from the "icon bar" or by cycling through the cursors in a predefined order. The available cursors are: WALK, LOOK, ASK, TALK, PICKUP, OPEN/CLOSE, OPERATE, and MOVE. Inventory items can also be used as cursors with the active inventory item also available in the cursor cycle.  Also located on the "icon bar" are the INVENTORY and RECORDER buttons, the active inventory item window, score, and the CONTROLS and HELP buttons. Clicking on the INVENTORY button will open up the inventory window, where items can be selected and combined as well as cursor icons that allow the player to use READ, OPEN, and LOOK commands with any inventory item."ASK" and "TALK" differ in that "ASK" results in "interrogation mode" and is only available with main characters, while "TALK" results in general, usually shorter, interactions and is available for most characters. Interrogation mode allows the player to ask the main characters questions by clicking on a topic from the list displayed. Global Topics may be asked of any character and are always present in the lists while specific topics are unique to each character and are subject to change. Past conversations are accessible through the RECORDER button which opens a recorder tapes window that displays tapes for each of the main characters.
At certain points during the game, the player is required to translate and send Drum Codes and Voodoo Codes. This is done by either selecting the correct character for the Voodoo code or by selecting the correct sequence for the drum code. Once the phrase is complete the player will select the SEND button to send the message.
- Main article: List of characters in the Gabriel Knight series
Cast for 1993 version:
- Tim Curry as Gabriel Knight & Gedde Butler
- Mark Hamill as Detective Mosely & Jeep Driver
- Michael Dorn as Dr. John
- Leah Remini as Grace Nakimura
- Efrem Zimbalist, Jr.as Wolfgang
- Rocky Carroll as Willy Walker
- Virginia Capers as Narrator
- Jeff Bennett as Sam,Technical Artist,Uniform Officer,Bruno,Lucky Dog Vendor & Motorcycle Cop
- Mary Kay Bergman as Gerde,Little Boy & Old Lady
- Jim Cummings as Desk Sergeant Frick,Jazz Band Leader,Blues Band Leader, Dragon,Gunter,Cajun Band Leader & Muscle Man Pedestrian
- Linda Gary as Grandma Knight & Tetelo
- Leilani Jones as Malia Gedde
- Nancy Lenehan as Magentia Moonbeam
- Chris Lytton as Crash
- Monte Markham as Professor Hartridge,Bartender,Stonewall King & Marcus
- Stuart M. Rosen as Priest, Phone Guy #5 & Beignet vendor
- Susan Silo as Madame Cazaunoux
- Dorian Harewood as Watchman Toussaint Gervais
In every Gabriel Knight game, the popular gospel hymn "When the Saints go marching in" can be heard, albeit in different remixes and forms.
The CD-ROM version featured voice talents of such well-known actors as Tim Curry as Gabriel and Robert the butler, Mark Hamill as his friend Detective Mosely and the Jeep driver in Africa, Leah Remini as Grace, and Michael Dorn as Dr. John, a proprietor of a voodoo museum in central New Orleans.
- Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers (Floppy)
- Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers - 20th Anniversary Edition
- Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers Novel
- 1994 Adventure Game of the Year - Computer Game Review
- 1994 Adventure Game of the Year - Computer Gaming World
- 1993 Best of Show - Consumer Electronics Show
- Official Website from 2001
- Template:Moby game
- Review at Adventure Gamers
- Sierra Community Forums: Gabriel Knight