Post by Steve Farrelly @ 05:32pm 24/11/21 | 0 Comments
It seems crazy that there aren't more detective and investigation-based games. Sure, plenty of games feature mysteries and puzzles and riddles to solve, but as far as truly detective in nature, it's not a massive field (excluding post-and-click adventure games). Which is one reason why Frogwares' Sherlock Holmes Chapter One really manages to stand out. Well, that and its stellar story.
It's just a shame that with that, it's not quite as good as it deserves to be, which can really be brought down to the tech driving the game, and maybe Frogwares just being that bit too ambitious with what it wants to serve up in the genre.
Here's a clue from our in-depth review:
What’s immediately great, and jarring, all at once is Frogwares wastes no time throwing you into the thick of things. The pressure to perform a decent job of investigating is that Holmes is written as a narcissistic know-it-all who has little-to-no humanity when it comes to the cold, hard truth of things. Logic is his friend and he’d have made an excellent Vulcan.
The game itself plays like this: clues and deductions and the game’s overall story -- main and otherwise -- are all intimately linked. There’s a coherent journey that never feels disjointed in how it’s narratively presented. This is at minor odds, however, with use of its investigative systems; Mind Palace, Case Book, the world map and Sherlock’s Wardrobe (you play dress-ups, a lot). Jon, Sherlock’s imaginary childhood friend, a kind of ye olde timey lad who affectionately calls Sherlock “Sherry”, also helps keep you up to date with a sort of simplified delivery of all that has transpired at any given point. But those systems mentioned above, they’re clunky and difficult at times to discern one moment to the next, and take some time to work through from a functioning and confident level.
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 12:09pm 10/11/21 | 0 Comments
"Sherlock has his childhood pal alongside him. Their playground suddenly became all grown-up, but their demeanor is yet to catch up."
This is just one quote from a fascinating developer diary from Frogwares (The Sinking City), highlighting the cinematic flair and nuance the studio has packed into its forthcoming Sherlock Holmes Chapter One open-world detective opus. The studio also expresses its thanks for the community hype around the game, but implores patience via a candid note.
In addition to the dev diary we're also including the most recent Prologue video for the game from the team, which is a bit of a primer for those still keen to learn more before taking the investigative plunge. Interestingly, as part of these pre-release media drops from the studio, Frogwares has also seen fit to curb expectation on the game's 'hopeful' release quality, essentially accepting that Chapter One isn't a Triple-A release, while reiterating it is still its biggest game to-date.
As we near the release SHCO, we’re seeing a lot of comments excited for the game which is such an amazing feeling. But we also see a fair amount of comments comparing some of our stuff to much bigger and more expensive titles. We totally understand the demand for technically-flawless games. However when a team of our caliber creates a game, we need to prioritize what matters most - an emotional experience that is hopefully bigger than the sum of its technical parts.
It’s with this mindset and understanding that allowed us to make the game with no crunch. And why we’re able to publish it all on our own after 20 years of being forced to always sign away part of our creations. It’s also why we priced the game at 45 USD and not 70 USD.
This is still our biggest project yet in terms of size, gameplay time, new systems, open-world design and story. And we’re extremely proud of what we’ve made. We hope you'll enjoy it too.
- Wael Amr, CEO, Frogwares.
This sort of transparency is fantastic and we absolutely need more of it in our industry. Check out both videos embedded below. Sherlock Holmes Chapter One releases this November 16 for PC, PS5 and Xbox Series X|S, and later for PS4 and Xbox One.
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 11:45am 18/06/21 | 0 Comments
And by meta game, it's kind of not. And while we're yet to see how deep it goes (so it might still be meta), what Frogwares has revealed in its latest Sherlock Holmes Chapter One video deep-dive suggests there's a lot hidden on the game's island setting of Cordona, the discovery of which will be entirely reliant upon your disguises.
This is shaping up to be Frogwares' best outing yet. The talented studio gave us a very solid effort with The Sinking City and if they've expanded on the various investigation mechanics found in that game, and added more to truly craft a Sherlock Holms fantasy here, as highlighted with the disguises mechanic, well this could all be elementary.
Getting information out of suspects is a priority for Sherlock. But on the island of Cordona not everyone is so welcoming to outsiders. So hopefully a change of threads will get those tongues wagging.
Similar to Frogwares’ previous investigation themed titles, the game will however not simply tell you what disguise to find and use on characters. It’s up to players to logically conclude what disguise could work based on observation, additional clues and sound reasoning. Similarly, a certain disguise can have the opposite effect and cause a character to be even more tight lipped.
Watch the disguises video deep-dive embedded below, and check back for more updates as we edge closer to the game's 2021 release.