8

A great adventure game, if a little frustrating at times.

The last game in this series was "Sherlock Holmes - The Awakened", and I think many of us were pleasantly surprised with that game due to its great atmosphere, story and user interface.

This latest game continues in the same vein as The Awakened but also has many improvements to the basic game design. Especially the graphics stand out here and this may very well be the best looking full-3d-adventure-game made to date.

Some of the artwork in here is just downright impressive and the 3d-designers surly must have spent a lot of time, and effort, recreating the various museums that you come across; sometimes it's almost like being there at the museums in person. The game engine also seems very well taken care of, if you have the processing power you can crank up the settings and enjoy some very good looking surroundings.

Similarly the voice acting and storytelling is also top notch and anyone who enjoys Sherlock Holmes and/or a good detective story is in for a treat.

So why then isn't this game rated higher than 8.0? Well - the simple truth is that the game can be frustratingly difficult and vague at times. In order to catch Lupin you have to follow a large number of clues that he's placed in your path, but some of them you truly would have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out.

I can honestly say that I don't think anyone who plays this game will be able to complete it without resorting to a guide. It's not really that the riddles are exceedingly difficult (Heck - I've beaten Riven and Myst, that's difficult!) but instead that sometimes it's very vague what you're supposed to do. Most of the times it works, and then it's great, but then suddenly you just become completely stuck and have no idea of what to do next.

At several points you also have type in the correct answers to riddles, and if you then don't think along the lines of the game designers you're in trouble. The problem is that in real life there would be several answers/solutions on how to solve a problem, but here in the game you have to do it in the exact manner, and sequence, that the game designers were thinking about and it can all become very frustrating.

So while "The Awakened" was a much more easygoing "come along for the ride" kind of game this one is a much more in your face puzzle/riddle type of game. Some will surely like it but I myself found some of the puzzles unnecessarily vague and farfetched. So yes - it's a good adventure game, but definitely not the first choice for casual players.

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