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SAW - A Game Review

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  • SAW - A Game Review

    INTRO:

    Hello, everyone! This is my review of Shadow at the Water's Edge. Please enjoy!

    SYNOPSIS/PLOT:

    - Nancy has been rewarded for completing her latest case, and is now traveling to Japan for a special foreign teaching opportunity, accompanied by her friends, Bess and George. For the duration of her trip, Nancy has chosen to stay in the Ryokan Hiei, a spooky Japanese inn that has a reputation for being haunted. You, as Nancy Drew, must discover who, or what, is scaring the guests away, while unraveling the shadowy past that plagues the Ryokan and its owners... I absolutely loved the plot of this game, and have always enjoyed a good ghost story!

    CHARACTERS: (Accents were fantastic and very believable!)

    - Miwako Shimizu: Very polite and hospitable, she is the manager of the Ryokan and its guests. She genuinely cares for the business and puts a lot of hard work into making the inn seem warm and friendly. But lately, with all of the hauntings going on, she has been under enormous stress, trying her best to keep the Ryokan from falling into bankruptcy. Although she may seem calm and collected on the outside, her unwillingness to talk about her past leads us to believe that there's more to her character than she's letting on... I thought she lacked a strong personality, but even so was still a solid character!

    - Rentaro Aihara: An old friend of the Shimizu family, he now works as the Ryokan's handyman. Very mechanically minded, he loves to tinker with things around the inn, and even bought a robotic cat for his girlfriend, Miwako. But even though he loves the Ryokan, his dream is to move closer to the city, where he can be free from the rules and culture of the Shimizu family. Could his desire to leave be reason enough to frighten away the guests? He was by far my favorite character! From his amusing dialogue, to his quirky personality, he never failed to make me smile!

    - Yumi Shimizu: A fun-loving girl who has left behind the tradition and culture of the Ryokan in pursuit of her own dreams. As the eldest daughter in the Shimizu family, she is soon to inherit the Ryokan Hiei as her own. But, caught up in the fast-paced life of the city, the last thing she wants to do is return to the sleepy, old inn. Could her own self interest be reason enough to scare away the Ryokan's business? She was, in my opinion, one of the characters I most enjoyed! She had a fun, carefree attitude and was always so much fun to visit!

    - Takae Nagai: The grandmother of Yumi and Miwako, she is now the cultural director for the guests staying at the Ryokan. Extremely superstitious, she believes a vengeful ghost (also known as a yurei) has come back to haunt them, and will not rest until revenge is found. She did talk a little slow, and her lessons were a bit tedious, but the depth to her personality left me wondering what she was really thinking and what she might possibly be capable of... In other words, great character development!

    SETTING:

    - Set in the city of Japan, the setting was split into two parts: the Ryokan and the Downtown area. The Ryokan was dark and extremely creepy, with multiple floors and a beautiful outdoor garden to explore. Due to Nancy's job during the daylight hours, the game was always played at night, which added to the spooky atmosphere. I loved the little details around the Ryokan that really added to the feeling of their culture and the way they lived. For these reasons, I think this location was one of my favorite aspects of this game! Then, of course, there was the downtown district. These locations weren't creepy or spooky in the least. In fact, they were very bright and cheery, giving you a break from the dark, gloomy atmosphere of the Ryokan...

    MUSIC:

    - The music in this installment was spot on! It was a fantastic addition to the location and atmosphere of the game. If you were in the Ryokan, the music would be dark and suspenseful, which really added to the spookiness of your surroundings. But if you were in the downtown area, it would play some upbeat, modern music. This change of pace was very smart, and gave players some diversity as they explored the different locations...

    PUZZLES:

    - To me, this was the greatest let down of the entire game. Don't get me wrong, some of them were unique and intriguing, but most of them only involved numbers. This was an essential part of the gameplay, as you needed to finish them in order to complete a task. The first few were fine, but after a while, it got pretty boring. So, if I were to rate this aspect of the game, I would give it a 6 out of 10...

    SCARE FACTOR:

    - It all boils down to this: This was an extremely scary game, and even I found myself a little tense at more than one point throughout the story (this coming from a 15-year old). But even so, most of the incidents were only "hauntings", and I can only think of a couple of times where you actually SEE the ghost. This in mind, I felt that this aspect of the game was really well balanced and spread evenly throughout the plot...

    ENDING:

    - Because each and every character had a such a strong motive, it was not easy to tell who the culprit was going to be. I must admit, I wasn't completely surprised, but it was still a lot of fun to complete the rest of the game!

    CONCLUSION:

    - A truly spooky game with a well-written plot, this game hasn't failed to amaze me! But, in my opinion, because of the extremely high scare factor, I would definitely exercise caution with younger players... (unless they're feeling brave!) Overall, this is definitely a must-play!

    Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you enjoyed this review!
    Be sure to check out some of my other reviews!
    Last edited by CandyDrizzle821; August 10, 2016, 02:18 PM.

  • #2
    Thanks for reviewing this!!!! I'm playing this game right now and I absolutely love it
    tina


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    Comment


    • #3
      Thank you SO much for taking the time to read my review, and I'm glad you're enjoying the game!!!

      Happy Sleuthing!

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