Sometimes a game really surprises you. One that makes you think differently about the kind of game you enjoy. Back in 2014 Sherlock Holmes Crimes and Punishments came along and really took me by surprise. I had no idea what to really expect but I found myself hooked. This time I’m here with another console version of the game series with this Sherlock Holmes The Devils Daughter Review.
Frogwares previous release on PS4 and Xbox One was well received generally, even if the mechanics weren’t the friendliest on console. So with the chance to get on with this new game, I was eager to see how it moved the series forward. It was a shame a big delay on the console version has affected some gamers, but it’s available now.
The game sees a number of changes. Some very good for the experience and some that maybe could have been done better. But once again, these indie developers have created another surprise package that is one to pick up for the gamer that likes their adventures, puzzles and graphic adventures.
Look and Feel – All in The Details My Dear Watson
There are layers to this game, and I’m really not quoting Shrek here gamers. There is a real level of detail to what you do here. Especially when you take a closer look at some of the characters during your famous analysis.
You’ll see some wonderfully rendered character faces, clothing and little details that you, as Sherlock, deduce to give you an idea on their personality.
When the game gets moving it does lose that layer of detail however and becomes nothing particularly special in comparison to some games out there. Some of the lip syncing is hit and miss too, along with a few glitches here and there. Nothing that ruins the game but enough to break some of the emersion in the story at times.
When you consider the small team making this, they have made some really positive steps forward from last time out. The game is far more console friendly in its presentation and movement and looks much more solid. One thing they really, REALLY need to get better on is loading times however. Moving from place to place in a horse and cart really gets a bit dull after a while.
Story and Gameplay – Done By Design
Here you have the reason to play the game and the reason why you need to be a certain type of gamer to fully enjoy it. Much like Telltale Games and the latest creation of Batman, there is more of a slow approach where it comes to gameplay. Focusing more on quick time events for action along with puzzles to solve and conversational choices to make.
You take control of Sherlock Holmes, a seemingly younger and with a new voice actor coming in to portray that. The thread which keeps everything moving along is the return of his adopted daughter following a case in which he was responsible for her real father’s death.
But the game stays traditional to its routes and works in the form of different cases to solve with parts of the overall plot mixing in here and there.
The cases are where you’ll get hooked. This time Sherlock starts in the heat of the action with a chase in the woods. You are being hunted and everything around you is very desperate. It’s an exciting start, more than I was expecting. In classic Uncharted Fashion you go back in time to where this is actually part of the first case.
Where some of the cases are inevitably more entertaining than others, the writing team really have done a great job in creating variety of different adventures to solve. A personal favourite of mine was a later mission that sees a disaster in the middle of London. After rescuing the injured you piece together what happened to cause the crash by moving pieces around the scene and subsequently piece together who was responsible.
All the cases use similar mechanics, you explore the areas and speak with witnesses and piece together clues. There are people to analyse with choices to make here too that can see you miss out on a complete deduction if you get the choice wrong.
Piecing together clues and putting possibilities together will see you enter your mind-map and choice where you see the case going. The more clues collect the more accurately you can solve the case and make the correct choices. But even with everything in place, you can still condemn and innocent person.
It’s slow at times, lot helped by the loading times but the overall quality of the cases will keep you coming back till you see the game completed. Especially to see what happens with your daughter.
Overall – Whatever Remains…
I really do like these games and I think the developers have improved the experience this time. It’s certainly worth your time if you enjoy graphic novel games or adventure titles.
The gameplay elements have been improved to work better with a console too. You’ll find sharper controls and better use of the thumb stick functions.
What holds it back is some very long loading times and an average presentation during gameplay. Although, in close up and cut scenes it looks quite impressive. What will keep you going is the story and the addictive cases that will see you keeping going until they have all been solved.
Another step forward for the series and one I hope continues for next time.