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Welcome to Mystery Mania - Game Review #13

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  • Welcome to Mystery Mania - Game Review #13

    Nancy Drew in

    Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    A Mystery Mania Review
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Welcome to the thirteenth edition of Mystery Mania! Here at Mystery Mania we strive to give you an unbiased review of each and every Nancy Drew game in the series. As chief editor, I have played all of the games five times and consider myself to be very involved in the world of Nancy Drew. While this certainly does not mean that I know all there is to know, I hope that my in-depth reviews will be helpful to all who read them!

    Mystery Mania Mission: Explain what each game has to offer and how it caters to the individual preferences of every detective! There is no bad mystery...there are just different mysteries!


    Plot and Storyline

    Nancy has been invited to take a ride on a centuries old train and, what's more, she gets to go with the Hardy boys! Frank and Joe Hardy were invited by a celebrity, Lori Girard, to accompany her to Copper Gorge, Colorado. Several other celebrities are also on board the train and all for the same purpose: to find out what happened to the train's original owner, Jake Hurley, and his mysterious gold mine. A mystery laced with legend and history, this could be one of Nancy's most difficult cases yet!

    As far as plots go, this one is superb! Nancy finds herself in the midst of an intricate, fascinating, and mysterious story that goes way back in time. All components of the mystery fit intimately together, making for a storyline that is extremely well thought through. It also holds attention and is full of unique surprises that will baffle and amuse, excite and amaze!

    Detective rating for 'Plot and Storyline': The Pulitzer Plot Detective - Good for detectives who appreciate the best of plots.

    Character Interaction

    There are seven characters and two phone friends, Bess and George, to consult with on this case. Nancy is mingling with celebs, which can only mean one thing. Prepare for gossip and lies, tempers and laughs! Character interaction plays a big part of this mystery and sorting out the truth from the lies becomes incredibly tricky. Egocentric characters, with the exception of Frank and Joe, make for very interesting conversations. Detectives may find themselves rolling their eyes at these characters, but they will likely also be incredibly entertained! Unique, enjoyable but not overwhelming, character interaction is a real treat in this case!

    Detective rating for 'Character Interaction': The Chatty Cathy Detective - Good for detectives who enjoy full, interesting conversations with suspects.

    Exploration

    Even though Nancy is confined to a train for most of the mystery, there are tons of locations to explore! There are numerous train cars to explore and Nancy does venture into the outside world once the train reaches Copper Gorge, Colorado. A creepy crypt, an eccentric restaurant, and several secret locations are just waiting for Nancy to peruse their corners and leave no stone unturned. There are lots of clues to follow, especially once the whole mystery basically turns into a treasure hunt, and several fascinating objects to find. Lovers of exploration will not be disappointed!

    Detective rating for 'Exploration': The Eagle Eye Detective - Good for detectives who enjoy countless opportunities for invigorating snooping.

    Puzzles

    At one point in the mystery, Nancy is provided with a series of very important clues that she must work through logically. Therefore, while the number of defined puzzles is moderate, the whole mystery itself because a big logic puzzle. There are not any specific chores or superfluous tasks and Nancy is free to focus on the mystery. This mystery will really make detectives think while hardly being overwhelming or tedious.

    Detective rating for 'Puzzles': The Logical Detective - Good for detectives who excel at tests of logic.

    Scare Factor

    A relatively calm mystery laced with adrenaline-pumping moments and an eerie story, scare factor is at an admirable medium in this mystery! Surprises and spooky moments are evenly placed all throughout the mystery, keeping detectives on their toes and their minds alert. However, the moments are not blatantly terrifying, so detectives also do not need to worry about being scared out of their socks. Furthermore, spooky music, eerie background music, sneaky suspects, and rumors of ghosts make for an intriguing atmosphere that could trigger some chills. Good for the calm detective and the detective who enjoys some excitement, this game is an admirable compromise.

    Detective rating for 'Scare Factor': The Subtle Detective - Good for detectives who appreciate a subtly creepy atmosphere without obvious scare tactics.

    Setting

    This game is unique in that the setting is literally the train that Nancy rides upon. While the ultimate destinations of the train are Western states, Colorado and Nevada to be specific, the mystery overall doesn't take place in any one geographic location. The setting is instead evoked through cultural decorations and hints on the train. Victorian paintings, family dynamics, dances, and cultural practices are scattered throughout the train and help place Nancy in an intriguing context. Colorado and Nevada have very little to do with the setting and their only real presence in the game is mention of their names, but the train acts as a mobile and authentic setting all on its own.

    Detective rating for 'Setting': The Navigator Detective - Good for detectives who enjoy subtle hints of the setting without it being a major focus of the game.

    Length

    Not too long and not too short, this game finds itself perfectly in the middle regarding length. When playing for the first time, it may take a little while to sort through all the clues and gossip. Any replays are much quicker, but still a good length.

    Detective rating for 'Length': The Goldilocks Detective - Good for detectives who like games that are neither too long nor too short.

    Graphics

    Graphics are quite nice in this game, from the suspects and cutscenes to the backgrounds and environments. The mystery starts with one of the best cutscenes in the series thus far. The character movements are very fluid and they look much more natural than they have in past games. Regular character interaction still has some jerky movements and mouth movements that don't match up with the words, but overall improvements have definitely been made. The characters look and move more like humans than robots, especially Frank and Joe Hardy who are expertly designed. The backgrounds and environments are fantastic as always; the beautiful train and stunning atmospheres are wonderful!

    Detective rating for 'Graphics': The Enhanced Detective - Good for detectives who appreciate quality graphics in most areas of a mystery.

    Music

    The music in this mystery mixes Victorian nuances with Western charm, making for a unique and pleasant soundtrack! By perfectly matching the environment, mood, and design of the mystery, music becomes a strong point and a lovely addition to an already lovely case!

    Detective rating for 'Music': The Virtuoso Detective - Good for detectives who love good Nancy Drew music.

    Mystery Mania - Thirteenth Edition - Summary


    Good for detectives who appreciate the best of plots.
    Good for detectives who enjoy full, interesting conversations with suspects.
    Good for detectives who enjoy countless opportunities for invigorating snooping.
    Good for detectives who excel at tests of logic.
    Good for detectives who appreciate a subtly creepy atmosphere without obvious scare tactics.
    Good for detectives who enjoy subtle hints of the setting without it being a major focus of the game.
    Good for detectives who appreciate quality graphics in most areas of a mystery.
    Good for detectives who love good Nancy Drew music.

    Thank you for reading! Join us soon for our next edition featuring Danger by Design at a message board near you!
    Last edited by mysterygirl70; December 29, 2012, 09:34 AM.
    .....·¨¯¨·.
    ....`-¤-...)...At first people refuse to believe that a strange new thing can be done...
    .........¸·´
    .¸.-¤´....(¯`´¯)´¯)...Then they begin to hope that it can be done...
    (............`·¸·´¸·´..Then they see that it can be done...
    .`·.,¸_¸,.·´....(....Then it is done, and all the world wonders why it was not done centuries ago...
    .....................`-¤-´.....
    --Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

    Think you have what it takes to conquer the Nancy Drew Summer GP Challenge? Click here to join!
    Thank you, olbrso for the beautiful swirl!
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