How would Sherlock Holmes commit murder
Crimes & Punishments: Sherlock Holmes
The nice thing about the Holmes universe is that it has never really changed since the beginning, and yet it is always exciting and spectacular at the same time. In "Crimes & Punishments: Sherlock Holmes" the adventure begins in the apartment of the star detective, which is, as usual, on Baker Street. The prelude is quite bumpy, as Sherlock is blindfolded for shooting training in his living room. In general, everything seems to be as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle once intended: Holmes looks strange as ever, the entire ambience is tastefully coordinated and the game view, compared to other point & click adventure games, is unusual (we see Sherlock in the literally when working over the shoulder) was also retained. So if you need a familiar gaming atmosphere as security, you will not be disappointed here.
Spectacular cases well portioned
In this part, too, the manufacturers focus on their greatest strength: puzzles. Right at the beginning of the game, Inspector Lestrade leads us to the country house of an elderly lady who laments the tragic and at once cruel loss of her husband. The old whaler hangs in his shed in the grounds of the property, peppered with harpoons. After a detailed assessment of the crime scene, Holmes and Watson immediately procure the appropriate halves of pigs to help clarify the case. Can a single perpetrator even commit such a murder alone? What looks like an exciting experiment at the beginning quickly turns out to be a nerve strain. The controls are quite idiosyncratic and throwing the harpoons is simply not fun. This is problematic insofar as such details during the entire course of the game are the reasons why many of the mini-games on offer keep spoiling the fun. Picking the locks is a similarly complicated affair.
The episode-like division of the individual cases is well done, so that the game testers also know at the end of which event the case actually started. Compared to earlier parts of the series, a positive development can be determined here.
Clumsy controls, useful hints
The controls are actually the game's Achilles heel. Basically, faulty missions and imprecise controls are an absolute "no go" among gamers, so it is in no way surprising that the game testers lost interest in solving the current case. Fortunately, a kind of game routine can be developed relatively quickly, whereby certain errors and technical difficulties can be foreseen and avoided. Even after the first successfully completed missions, the game testers moved safely through the game world, so that supporting elements, such as the archive in Sherlock's living room, were often not necessary. Otherwise there is Sherlock's brother Mycroft, who is a further support due to his numerous relationships. This can be contacted by telegraph, for example.
Tasteful crime scenes, loving details
The game is particularly enhanced by the design of the various spots that the game testers passed over time. When looking for clues, it is above all the small and loving details that catch the eye. Sherlock's ingenuity, for example, represents a particular sophistication: while witnesses are being interrogated, the scenes stop temporarily so that the players have the opportunity to identify the interlocutor on the basis of external characteristics. The findings flow into the course of the interrogation, giving the players the chance to influence the situation in their favor. “It's really cool with scanning people, like in the series” (Felix, 15 years old).
The new findings can also be interpreted in different ways, so that there are numerous ways to interpret and close the case. So previously innocent people become main suspects and those previously accused become key witnesses, depending on how many clues the game testers encountered and interpreted accordingly. There are also difficult moral decisions to be made from time to time: Do I get someone an alibi or do I pass the case on to Lestrade and decide for right and not for justice? These and other peculiarities round off the puzzle factor of the game and even largely hide the fact that some of the logic within the game simply could not be understood by the group.
"Crimes & Punishment: Sherlock Holmes" needn't be ashamed: The Point & Click Adventure again manages to inspire the game testers with exciting cases, a tasteful ambience and weird humor. The classic presentation in the style of the 1850s represents a contrast to the contemporary series, which most group members have been more familiar with than the original. The partially incomprehensible consequences within the game do not matter here, since the fun of the game is not spoiled by them. The exciting puzzles and numerous mini-games fit comfortably into the main story, so that clues can be interpreted differently and cases can be closed accordingly. Due to the complexity of the game that has prevailed in the meantime, the game testers recommend the game to young people aged 14 and over, who tend to be older, as some relationships are a bit more multifaceted and often had to be explained to younger players.
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