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Nancy Drew the Mystery of the Clue Bender Society DS Review

01/11/2008 Family Teen Gamer Review
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Nancy Drew the Mystery of the Clue Bender Society DS

Nancy Drew the Mystery of the Clue Bender Society



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When I was given this game to review, I was really excited, as I really enjoyed the Nancy Drew film recently, although I haven't played any of the other games before. Nancy Drew is a super sleuthing teenager with a craving for trouble. This adventure story game is therefore in the mystery genre, and so there are a lot of clues to find around the mansion where this game is set.

I found the game frustrating at times, but when I persevered, I found the right answer. There were many different puzzles to complete and I still haven't completed them all! Some are easy to work out but others are not - well, not for me, anyway! Someone who is better at puzzles might get a bit bored with them, but they were about right for me.

When you begin the game, you (playing as Nancy Drew) have received a letter from the Clue Bender Society to inform you that you have been chosen to be a candidate to fill a spot at the Society. You also receive a finger print scanalyzer so you can scan selected objects to look for finger prints. This helps you along the way.

I liked this game because it was different to games that I usually play.

Once at the mansion you are told that there is a tome book hidden somewhere in the mansion, so Nancy sets off to find it. There is a series of puzzles before you find a box in a juke box, which you take to the head of the society. He opens it and whilst doing that he tells Nancy that she has succeeded in her mission, by passing the test and finding the box, but when he looks inside, there is no book - it has been stolen! And then the real game begins, you are off to solve the mystery, interacting with characters, objects, and playing mini games along the way.

The music was good because when you went into different rooms the music changed which I quite liked. After a while though, it began to be repetitive and I turned it off.

I was a bit disappointed with the graphics. They were not as good as they could have been; the backgrounds were good, but the movement looked pixellated. Also, I found the interface for moving around to be difficult to use; to 'explore' there were arrows to show were you were allowed to go and although you seemed to have freedom to move around where you wanted to, in fact you had to follow the prescribed path. The story was gripping, though, and it really made you want to complete the puzzles in order to find out what happened next. The other game characters were interesting as well. However, it was often tricky to find out exactly what needed doing, which I found frustrating.

I liked this game because it was different to games that I usually play, but I did find bits of it annoying. I recently reviewed Professor Layton and the Curious Village and I would say that that was a better game in terms of the story, and also the animations, as well as the ease of finding the puzzles. I suppose if you are a big Nancy Drew fan you may prefer this game, but I'm not sure I can be bothered to stick with the interface for long enough to finish it.

Written by Rowan Brown

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Rowan Brown writes the Teen Gamer column.

"I write about my favourite games from a younger person's perspective. It's often surprising how different this ends up to other more grown up reviews."

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