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Apr 12, 2008

Review: Agatha Christine's And Then There Were None

Agatha Christine's And Then There Were None
The Adventure Company, AWE Games
Available for Nintendo Wii and PC

In the classic story, And Then There Were None, 10 people, each with something to hide and something to fear, are invited to a lonely mansion on Shipwreck Island by a host who, surprisingly fails to appear. One by one, the guests share the darkest secrets of their wicked pasts and one by one, they die in sync with a little poem in the house, “Ten Little Sailor Boys“. Agatha Christie fans and newcomers to the genre can look forward to a series of unexpected turns; although the storyline stays true to the original concept, players will encounter new plot twists and lots of puzzle solving to keep them busy.

The first comes in the form of an 11th character, the player, a boatman who brings the others to the island and then is trapped there himself. To save the lives of the intended victims, the player must unravel the motives behind the murders and uncover the identity of the killer. If successful, he will spare not only the lives of the remaining guests, but also his own.

Using the Wii remote controller, game play in this traditional PC adventure game can be taken to a new level of interactivity. For instance, players will have the freedom to control their character's actions, such as using a digging motion to scoop flour, or turn the handle on a door; and the introduction of timed puzzles where, for example, players must race up a set of stairs from a boat docked below. However The Wii remote motions weren’t programmed well and I found myself struggling just to open doors in the game.

Much like normal point and click games, players must find clues and items to solve the mystery behind the 10 little sailors murders and the mysterious guest. The puzzles I found were down right impossible to figure out on your own with having to resort to cheating. With silly solutions and sometimes hard to find key objects, its no wonder this game is incredible hard to figure out and would even have Agatha Christine tearing her hair out.

I noticed that the graphics and music haven’t changed much since the last time I played an adventure company game which was about 10 year ago and surprisingly I’m not really not that bothered by it. Truly if I wanted next generation graphics, I wouldn’t be playing the Nintendo Wii, so the 1990s looking Gabriel Knight characters don’t really bother me. I tend to play point and click games for the storyline and the puzzle solving though, and not the graphics and the music.

Although I was happy to see The Adventure Company stay true to the original storyline of Agatha Christine’s masterpiece, And then were none, also know as Ten Little Indians, I was completely thrown off by the incredibly hard puzzles in the game. Even when I referenced the answers online, the puzzles still really didn’t make sense on how they fit together. If you’re a real big fan of Agatha Christine and you want a mystery game that going to test your deduction skills to the core, then pick this title up for the Nintendo Wii or PC, but I suggest no Watson out there should pick up this title without his Sherlock Holmes on call.

Rating: 5 out of 10
Rent it!

1 comment:

Ry-Tron said...

I'd have a hard time playing this game... not because I absolutely suck at adventure games (seriously, I can't even come close to solving a sam and max puzzle without printing out a GameFAQ in triplicate), but mainly because And then there were None was one of the first books I willingly read (12 years old or so) and the story is so stuck in my mind that anything outside of the actual events in the book would irk me to no end, much like reading excessively long run-on sentences like this one.