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[+]----» A RAN Review!

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  • [+]----» A RAN Review!

    Ransom of the Seven Ships
    A Review by Songlily

    Senior Detective

    A mostly deserted island in the Bahamas. HER did very well in capturing
    the Caribbean spirit! The graphics were stunning, and there were many places to
    visit and explore. Great setting for a game!

    RAN has a treasure hunt plot, wrapped up with a kidnapping; however, most of
    the game is focused on the treasure hunt. While this is a well-used plot in the ND
    games, it worked well here and didn't feel stale.

    This game is not terribly sequential, which I really liked. There are multiple things
    to work on at once, so if you're stuck on one part, you can always go work on another.
    There is more third-person gameplay than I would like, but it was okay for this game.
    Also, you play as both Nancy and George, but playing as George is not as interesting
    as playing as Bess in CRY.

    Time and Transportation:
    True to the spirit of the Bahamas, Nancy is outfitted with a golfcart for traversing
    the island. It reminded me of driving the roadster in CLK, which is a very good thing :)
    Nancy also uses a sailboat throughout the game. While I wish this could have been done
    in first person rather than third person, I appreciate its inclusion into the
    game--it made the setting seem more real and made exploring more interesting!
    Also, true to the Caribbean lifestyle, there is no sense of time in this game [no days or
    alarm clock]. While this fit the setting, it removed the sense of urgency that should
    have accompanied a kidnapping. In this sense, the tone of the game didn't quite
    fit the plot.

    Snooping and Exploring:
    There are multiple places on and off the island to explore, so props to HER for making
    a tiny island feel so huge! The snooping is nonexistent, however, but there really
    isn't a need for it in this game.

    Puzzles and Activities:
    FANTASTIC! I love puzzles--the harder the better--and this game didn't let me down.
    I have felt like the puzzles in the last few games I've played haven't been terribly hard,
    but there were definitely some in RAN that tried my wits and my patience :) HER brought
    in some new puzzles and activities that we haven't seen before [like cryptograms
    and sudoku], which made the puzzles feel very fresh. There are also some games,
    some diving, and some metal-detecting to add to the variety of activities. If you're
    not a puzzle person, though, you might be frustrated by this game, because most
    of the activities are puzzles.

    Minimal. This was the most disappointing aspect of RAN. You get to see and interact
    with George, but aside from George there is one other character. I understand
    that the island is supposed to be mostly deserted, but I thought HER took it a little
    too far. It would have been nice to interact with more characters, as well as to
    interact with the characters more.

    Overall Value:
    I think this game is a good buy if you love to stretch your brain and you're up for
    a challenge. It's got some great puzzles and activities to test your sleuthing skills.
    RAN is not as exciting as some other games, which is in part due to the laid-back
    Caribbean setting. If you're not a puzzle person and you want more snooping, more
    characters, and more excitement, you might want to look elsewhere. If you are a
    puzzle person, however, look no further!

    Last edited by Songlily; June 15, 2011, 10:43 PM.


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  • #2
    Professional Review

    Pardon if we just add a few things to your wonderful review, which seemed professional (consider ad copy or reviewing for a career). We found the golf cart hard to control with a mouse, but loved the sail boat. It is fun to sail the caribbean seas. The graphics were excellent, and the game flow perfect. You are right to comment on solving multiple puzzles at once. That is a big plus. Probably our favorite game.



    I took the Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon
    I rode the Haunted Carousel
    I circumnavigated Deception Island
    I defeated the Creature of Kapu Cave
    I illuminated Shadow Ranch
    I broke the Curse of Blackmoor Manor
    George and Bess Paid the Ransom of the Seven Ships
    The Lights went out for the Final Scene
    I Haunted Castle Malloy