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CUR review, from a fan of the horror/thriller genre

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  • CUR review, from a fan of the horror/thriller genre

    I thought I could handle this one on my own. I was wrong.
    CURSE OF BLACKMOOR MANOR
    From a fan of the horror/thriller genre

    So today I finally finished CUR. After years of procrastinating, I actually got the game, instead experiencing it through walkthroughs and trials. I absolutely love horror and thriller games, and I knew that this game had a reputation as possibly the scariest Nancy Drew game in existence. So did it live up to that reputation? The answer is, "...sort of."


    Technical issues: As with a lot of other old games, on my computer--Windows Vista--it made a small squeak or squeal in the background. It was barely audible, though, and very easy to ignore. Otherwise there were no problems.

    Setting: The setting is very ornate. There are lots of secret places to explore and most of the castle looks very beautiful. If you know or are learning Latin, it's also fun looking at all the crests and figuring out what they say. My only problem with the setting is that it's kind of bright in the main hall and conservatory at night, but this is okay seeing as it lets you see what you're doing.

    Music: Besides for maybe 1 or 2 songs I can remember, the music was pretty good. It wasn't too intimidating, but oh well. It set the tone and didn't seem wildly inappropriate for the setting.

    Puzzles: ARGH. I just could not figure out these puzzles. Some of them made more sense, but for the most part I would have never guessed what to do unless I looked it up. Just like in CRY, the clues are very vague and take a whole lot of connecting one thing to another.

    Characters: Jane, the young girl, is very out of place in the castle, but I guess that's alright. She makes up for it with surprising depth. Mrs. Drake and Nigel are alright, neither of them are particularly creepy or threatening. Linda is creepier, always acting cryptic and never letting anyone see her. But Ethel? Ethel pops up out of nowhere. Ethel shows up when you least want her or expect her to. I was half-convinced that she was stalking Nancy.

    Plot: This game's plot is about discovering why Linda is acting so strange, and what's hidden in the castle. Both of these are history-oriented--learning about the past of the witch and beast of Blackmoor, and about its treasure. The plot is actually fairly interesting.

    Cheesiness: Oh, Jane. Her room was the source of almost all the cheese in this game. Her, and Loulou the talking parrot. Maybe Loulou was supposed to be intimidating when you didn't know what she was at first, but after a while she's just kind of a joke. Cute, but she doesn't have much of a place in an almost-gothic setting like Blackmoor.

    Deaths: There are actually a few inventive and scary ways you can die in this game. There are also some where you just annoy people until they kick you out, but the ones that are interesting are better than a lot of other Nancy Drew deaths.

    Overall, how fun it was: Well... it might be fun if you're smarter than I am. But for me, this game was a whole lot of going "huh?" and then looking up my problems. I did enjoy the Latin everywhere, but that doesn't really make up for the amount of time I spent running around clueless. The scary scenes were fairly good, but that's not part of this section.

    Overall, how scary it was: It was creepy, definitely. The gargoyles and strange noises and sights at night definitely set the tone as gothic and creepy. Plus Ethel popping up out of nowhere to be passive-aggressive at you may or may not make you audibly squeak in surprise.



    Here's a quick rundown of the review:
    Technical issues: 4/5. The squeal may be my computer's fault, so expect this to work fine on your computer.
    Setting: 5/5. Detailed with lots of places to explore.
    Music: 3/5. It was pretty good for the most part but sometimes it was too happy.
    Puzzles: 2/5. Really hard to figure out.
    Characters: 4/5. BAM! ETHEL!
    Plot: 4/5. Intriguing. It makes you want to solve the case.
    Cheesiness: 3/5. Fine, besides Jane and the bird.
    Deaths: 4/5. A few good ones.
    Fun factor: 2/5. Too much time on elaborate puzzles.
    Scare factor: 4.5/5. It's not perfect, but it's very good.
    TOTAL SCORE: 33.5/50. That's 67%. The problem with this game is not that it's not scary, it's just ludicrously difficult to solve. This game is going to go below Danger on Deception Island on my list, but mainly just because I found it so unenjoyable to play.
    Follow the Banana to petition for games for us, uh, mature people.

    Mature people are cool with dancing bananas, right?


    Creepiness game reviews:
    Very scary: SAW, 94%, MHM, 88%, and CAP, 80%
    Sorta-scary: CRY, 72%, DDI, 72%, and CUR, 67%
    Not so scary: DOG, 60%, CAR, 58%, TRT, 57%, and ASH, 50%
    "Be okay with who you are."

  • #2
    Good review:) Yeah, I thought that the game was scary, but mainly creepy, what with the music, chanting and other things. Reps for being honest

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