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Ride 'em, cowgirl: A SHA Review

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  • Ride 'em, cowgirl: A SHA Review

    Plot: 7/10
    Nancy is off to Arizona to Bess's Aunt Bet and Uncle Ed (that's Elizabeth and Ed Rawley to you!) for a nice vacation with Bess and George. Or so she thinks... First, a rattlesnake bites Uncle Ed. Then, Bess and George's plane is delayed. And...a phantom horse? Nancy slowly uncovers the mystery about Dirk Valentine and his love, Frances Humber. It seems Dirk was a felon and hid away treasure for Frances before he was arrested. What's that? Treasure, you say? Yes, indeed, we're going on a treasure hunt in the old West! Yippee!! Nancy follows the clues that Dirk left for Frances, but she's got to be careful with that phantom horse running (and glowing!) around.

    This plot is super far-fetched, but I absolutely love it! Treasure, forbidden love, and...bank robbers?! Well, what could be better? Something strange is going on at Shadow Ranch where everyone has a secret and the only person you can trust died over a hundred years ago.


    Suspects: 10/10
    Dave Gregory: Foreman. He's a very cute cowboy, but is he hiding something behind those sweet brown eyes? Dave mainly hangs out around the chicken coop, but sometimes you can find him doing some snooping of his own. Hmm. Does this cowboy know more than he's letting on, or is he just flustered a sweet girl like Nancy?
    Shorty Thurmond: The cook. And the resident gossipmonger. He first tells Nancy about Dirk Valentine and his supposed treasure. Shorty also tells Nancy that the horse that appeared when Ed got bitten is supposedly the spirit of Dirk's horse. Creepy. Is he telling this story because he believes the legend or is he trying to scare Nancy away?
    Tex Britten: The head wrangler. He's a little scary and a litte harsh, but he takes very good care of the animals. Tex is very strict about Nancy going around riding Bob, the bay. Is he being strict for Nancy's own good, or is he hiding something of his own?
    Mary Yazzie: Owner of the shop, Mary's Gifts. She is just a local merchant and artist, but she's also trying to buy a piece of the Rawley's land. And what's that? She doesn't even like the Rawleys that much? Huh, that's weird. What's Mary up to: just trying to expand her business? Or trying to find some treasure?
    Bet and Ed Rawley: The ranch owners; they're not really suspects. You communicate with them by phone only, but they start off the mystery for you. Bet tells Nancy about the first unfortunate incident, and Ed mentions the phantom horse.


    Puzzles: 8/10
    The puzzles in SHA are neatly broken into five neat categories:
    Shorty's chores: Each day you have various chores to do for Shorty before he'll give you a canteen of water (so you can go riding). There are generally three tasks that he will ask you to do. They don't take much puzzle-solving, but they take some effort sometimes.
    Tex's quizzes: These are annoying... Finding the answers are all around the ranch, which means the answers aren't so hard, but finding and remembering them all is quite difficult sometimes.
    Mary's favors: Nancy needs to borrow or get some things from Mary, but she won't let Nancy just have them, of course. Like Tex's quizzes, these are more annoying than difficult.
    Treasure clues: These are FUN! I mean, they're usually really weird and difficult to decode, but they're still pretty fun. Dirk leaves clues all over the place, and there are all different kinds of puzzles to solve! I enjoy them, anyway.
    Misc. (games): There are two actual games in this mystery ( and they're related). One in in Mary Yazzie's shop; once you win it, you can play the other games. The former takes some logic, but it isn't too terrible. The latter is a game of chance, which means there's no skill to it, but it's more annoying because you can't control the outcome.


    Difficulty: 7/10 (Note: This is NOT a number showing how difficult the game is, but how appropriate the difficulty level is.)
    Finding some answers makes aspects of the game difficult. Overall, though, it's not very hard to figure things out.


    Hints 5/10:
    Bess and George: In this game, they mainly complain about their flight being delayed. They will give you hints if you ask for them, but they're not always entirely helpful. Dang.
    Frank and Joe: That's right, you get the Hardy boys in this game, too! Sadly, they also do more complaining than hint-giving. They'll give one hint (per conversation) if you ask for it as well, but (like B&G) most of their hints are vague and not very helpful.
    The Rawleys: Bet and Ed aren't really hear to give hints, but you can call them during the game. They can give you some insight to your suspects. Mostly, they're helpful, but they don't give too much away.
    Sheriff: He doesn't give hints either, but he also tells you what he knows about your suspects (at least the ones at Shadow Ranch). He gives you permission to go to certain places, which is helpful, I guess, but the Sheriff doesn't really help otherwise.
    Charleena Purcell: SO! Very helpful in this game. At first, she's a little tentative, but once she knows Nancy is super cool, Charleena is very helpful.


    Scare Factor: 6/10
    The run-ins you have with the (glowing -- eep!) phantom horse aren't that scary, but there are a few other moments where things jump out at you. BOO!


    Ending: 7/10
    You're in a different location for this End Game, which makes sense since you're on a treasure hunt. Following the final clues is a bit of a challenge (which is good!), and that's not all (also good!). There's a bit a of a twist so you can catch the culprit. Overall, a pretty good ending.


    Additional Comments:
    -The length of the game is structured into three days (and two night, but you can only do anything during one of them). The game took me a couple of days to finish the first time, but if you concentrate, it's a pretty quick mystery.
    -There are a decent amount of notes to take during this mystery. You need to keep track of certain things to advance in the game, etc.
    -I really like this game; I've played it many times. I like the history (well, fake history) behind it.

    Overall: 7.1/10
    -Sam :]
    Last edited by samajama; September 2, 2010, 12:30 AM.
    Sleuthing Since 2001
    SCK STFD MHM TRT FIN SSH DOG CAR DDI SHA CUR CLK TRN DAN CRE ICE CRY VEN HAU RAN WAC TOT SCK2 SAW CAP ASH TMB DED GTH SPY MED LIE SEA LCC RED @nancysassdrew
    New York City: You'd have to be crazy to live there, but on the other hand, you'd have to be crazy not to live there.

  • #2
    Great review! I can clearly see where you are coming from! What a spectacular and neat way to lay out all categories in the review-- I bet this took a lot of work! Great job!
    `;',.><

    THE STORY OF HEROES AND THIEVES
    my next ae, coming soon

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    • #3
      It did, but it was fun :] Thanks for your feedback!
      Sleuthing Since 2001
      SCK STFD MHM TRT FIN SSH DOG CAR DDI SHA CUR CLK TRN DAN CRE ICE CRY VEN HAU RAN WAC TOT SCK2 SAW CAP ASH TMB DED GTH SPY MED LIE SEA LCC RED @nancysassdrew
      New York City: You'd have to be crazy to live there, but on the other hand, you'd have to be crazy not to live there.

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      • #4
        You've written a great review there!
        I especially loved how it was laid out. And I think that it's really cool how you have a 'hints' section.

        Great job!
        C:


        So whether you come back by page or by the big screen,
        Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.

        J.K. Rowling


        Solved:
        SCK MHM TRT FIN SSH DOG CAR DDI SHA CUR CLK TRN DAN CRE ICE CRY RAN WAC TOT DED SCK2 LCC RED

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        • #5
          Originally posted by samajama View Post

          Hints 5/10:
          Bess and George: In this game, they mainly complain about their flight being delayed. They will give you hints if you ask for them, but they're not always entirely helpful. Dang.
          Frank and Joe: That's right, you get the Hardy boys in this game, too! Sadly, they also do more complaining than hint-giving. They'll give one hint (per conversation) if you ask for it as well, but (like B&G) most of their hints are vague and not very helpful.
          -Sam :]



          I liked Frank and Joe the best in this game!

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          • #6
            Great review! I agree with almost everything you said! You did an awesome job writing all of this out :]
            -Danni
            No measure of time with you............
            ( will be long enough. )*....But we'll start with forever.
            .................................................. ...........................11-18-11



            Currently obsessed with: The Hunger Games, the song "Goodbye" by SR-71, TMNT (team Raph!), The Vampire Diaries (Gah, choosing between Stefan and Damon is harder than I thought.).
            - / * нσω ℓσηg يs fσяeveя -[a cяε aε]

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ATAC agent View Post


              I liked Frank and Joe the best in this game!

              Me too! They were wonderful. And Joe's cute, too.
              Sleuthing Since 2001
              SCK STFD MHM TRT FIN SSH DOG CAR DDI SHA CUR CLK TRN DAN CRE ICE CRY VEN HAU RAN WAC TOT SCK2 SAW CAP ASH TMB DED GTH SPY MED LIE SEA LCC RED @nancysassdrew
              New York City: You'd have to be crazy to live there, but on the other hand, you'd have to be crazy not to live there.

              Comment


              • #8
                Really nice review! I enjoyed reading it! It was very well structured and written! Reps given!
                .........I think Earth is a pretty great place.....¸.·°¨¯¨°·¸
                ...........That's saying something....¸.·`.......`·-·`
                ...¸·°¨¯¨°·.¸ 'cause I've been through outer space!
                ...`·-·`.......` · . , ¸ _ ¸ , . · `(_¸ , . · `

                Hope everyone's having a great summer!

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