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An ICE Review!

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  • An ICE Review!

    The White Wolf of Icicle Creek
    A Review by Songlily

    Senior Detective

    I've seen all kinds of reviews on the ICE board, so now I'm throwing in my two cents.

    Length & Puzzles
    I liked ICE. I really did. I felt the length was shorter than I'd prefer but not
    too short. The puzzles, though there were few, were very challenging.
    I often sat down with my notebook and planned out strategies.
    [And, just for the record, though the Fox and Geese game you hear about took
    awhile, I found it one of the most stimulating puzzles yet--that one really
    made me think ahead!] However, there aren't very many puzzles at all, so
    if you're looking for constant brain teasers, check out SHA =) One thing I did like
    about some of the puzzles is that they reminded me of classic games--chess/checkers
    [fox and geese--you have to plan ahead and calculate what your opponent may do],
    the skating pond [minesweeper], etc. I thought that was fun.

    A lot of the game was chores--cooking, making beds [with one click], collecting
    laundry, and shoveling the skating pond. It was nothing too difficult, but
    eventually it got rather monotonous. The cooking was fun and exciting the
    first few times, but I was a bit miffed that my snooping schedule revolved
    around mealtimes. If you want to sleuth without constraints and are allergic to
    monotonous tasks, rethink buying this game. Eventually, the cooking spree ended,
    and few rooms need housekeeping, but having to remember to do all those chores
    was a bit much--on top of sleuthing! I think HER went a little too far on this one.

    There was little conversation in this game. The characters [VERY well programmed,
    by the way--excellent] were absent half of the day, and even then you didn't talk
    to them much. Instead, the plot was driven by one small task after another; the
    game was very sequential. You pretty much had to do everything in order--
    have this conversation, then explore this specific place, then come back at this
    time, etc. If you've played CUR, this was its polar opposite in that respect =)
    I, personally, did not mind the lack of conversation--sometimes I find too
    much talking in the games to be a bit boring.

    Suspense & Resolution
    Suspense-wise, this game didn't have much. It wasn't scary, it didn't have any
    real 'jump' moments [like CUR], and there was only one moment where you
    had to get yourself out of a tough spot [unless you count making sure you don't
    freeze while you're exploring outside]. The end was a little disappointing, since
    most of it was out of your hands, and I didn't understand what exactly you
    were supposed to do in the last moments. The end was incredibly similar to
    the end of CLK; however, the tone of CLK merited that sort of ending, but I'm not
    sure the tone of ICE did. The game-makers did have me tricked til the end as
    to the culprit, though--this one was not painfully obvious.

    If you're into major snooping, suspense, and even a bit of creepiness, check
    out CUR, MHM, DOG, and TRT. If you want a spicier ending, try DOG, SHA, and FIN =)

    History & Learning
    I liked the fact that you do learn about several different topics in this game.
    No, it may not be as exciting as castles, history, prohibition, or Houdini, for an
    avid learner like myself, it satisfied. I discovered a bit about wolves, dinosaurs,
    and seismology. History buffs won't be satiated, but animal-lovers and geologists
    certainly will be, as will anyone who loves learning, no matter the subject.

    Graphics, Voices, Music, Etc.
    Overall, I loved it. The wolf was beautiful, the voices were perfect [especially
    Lou's--his character seemed particularly real], the setting was gorgeous.
    There were many little architectural details to feast your eyes upon. The music
    disappointed me some--until the end, I rarely noticed that there was background
    music at all; the one beat I did notice sounded like something from DDI...The music
    near the end of the game was great, though.

    Menu & Screen
    Okay, a lot of people are complaining about the new set-up. While I would like
    to have a menu as you start the game [with the classic music and a 'Load Game' option],
    I thought the new playing screen was wonderful!! The viewing window
    is nice and large, and your inventory, journal [which contains several handy
    sections and a phone numbers list], and task list are easily accessible.
    There is a save button and and exit button right on the screen, so you do
    not have to go to a menu to do either of these. Also, you can change the
    sound settings from the playing screen, as well. I found the new set-up well-designed
    and a lot more hassle-free than the old one.

    On the whole, ICE was enjoyable, very challenging puzzle-wise, and engaging.
    The extremely sequential nature and endless chores were the only major downpoints,
    in my opinion, as they detracted from the actual mystery itself and your flexibility
    in solving it. I'd say GO FOR IT! Sure, you may want your $20 back, but several people
    [including myself] genuinely liked this game. You learn a bit, you cook a bit, and
    believe me, when you beat that Fox and Geese game, you'll feel like you've
    accomplished quite a bit =)

    Last edited by Songlily; June 15, 2011, 10:46 PM.


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  • #2
    Wow! I can tell that took some time. Very indepth review. Definatley would recommend this review. Excellent points and humorous as well! I agree with your topic on the chores- I felt very robotic about it, and very repetitive. Excellent review!
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