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Title: Dark Cases: The Blood Ruby
Started: September 16th, 2013
Finished: September 16th, 2013
Rated: 8/10
Leafeon‘s rating: 6/10
By: Big Fish Games
Duration: ~5 hours

September 17th, 2013

Wow, I didn’t see the time fly by so fast while playing this game. You’ll notice that I started adding Leafeon‘s ratings. She’s harsher than I am, so maybe you can just do the average of our ratings and find a better rating. But why do you even care about the ratings? You can just go and seek the reviews on the official website!

The atmosphere was ‘fitting’ for the type of tale, there was no ‘real life’ actors, but the computer graphics and the animation, I found, were great. [then again, I’m not a pro at this, why are you even reading this blog?]

I loved the fact that the ‘detective‘ (essentially, ourĀ character) this time was a woman. Though I think that the Mystery Case Files made certain the gender of the ‘Detective’ remained ambiguous, so that was also pretty good/smart on their end (but hey, I’m not a professional reviewer and I’m not a professional player, just sayin’).

Art-wise, the colourfulness of the whole scerenies and the brightness of the objects were appealing to the eye. Leafeon also found it pretty to look at.
Is it the fact that the main character was female? That the game was meant to attract more women? If so, I find it sexist and they shouldn’t have done it. It would be more believable and coherent if I hadn’t likes the colourful schemes they used.

The puzzles were far spread, i.e. the clues you found were either found too early or too late in Leafeon’s opinion [mind you also that she wasn’t there for the whole game period also]. It meant that for her, it was tougher to find the logic behind some of the things we collected.
However, I found that the very fact that they chose to do this many and added it like this made sure my brain had to be active in order to find the clues and to understand them without use of the hinting system, which is existent by the way, and there’s still the option to skip puzzles, though… I don’t recommend that.

At Game Play Setting: Casual, the level of difficulty of the puzzles was, I think, well-mixed. Sometimes, they were super easy, sometimes, they were medium. I found them easy because I followed the storyline closely. The notebook/diary that our characters keep, in any hidden object game, or rather, in any puzzle game, is your best friend.
There was one in particular that comes to mind when I think about a ‘hard puzzle’ in this game. Because it had many layers to it. I welcomed the difficulty because difficulties. [Let me come back to you once I finish the easy and the harder game play options]

The Hidden Objects Boards were ‘easier’ than the Mystery Case Files series. It may be because we know what to expect from Big Fish Games, or it’s just because our vocabulary has increased since then. Or the vibrant colours kind of helped? Both Leafeon and I loved the second level they added to the boards. It was interesting and interactive. It was the highlight of the game, in my sister’s humblest opinion (she didn’t like the abrupt ending).

Speaking of the storyline and the ending, the visuals and the atmosphere set the tone for the storyline, it dragged you in (for my part anyway). Some plot twists were quite easy to deduce, but then, it might be just me, I won’t judge based on that. The ending, indeed, may have been elaborated upon a little bit more. I don’t know what has happened to the main character, and this frustrates me quite a bit, I mean, she went to the past. Now what happens? Does she go back?

In short, despite the minor discomfort at ties that are cut short [though, IDEA, maybe they put the epilogue at the end of credits? Like… ending credits secret endings in movies? I’ve got to play the games again to find out!], I found, I really enjoyed playing the game and, as I’ve mentioned, I will be replaying it for the harder levels. I know that the puzzles will be harder to solve, so… if you were looking for a challenge, it might be more there (no duh, Ponyo, how dare you say such stupid things-plz?)

See you guys next time,
Ponyo!

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