May 29, 2014

Broken Sword 5 - the Serpent's Curse Review for PS Vita

Revolution games brings their point and click adventure to the PS Vita. What do you have to look forward to, and is it worth your time and money?

Back in the 90s, I was an avid gamer when it came to point and click adventures. Maniac Mansion, Monkey Island, King's Quest (and all the Quest spawns), Gabriel Knight... I spent a lot of time enjoying those games because of several core reasons: they had a good story line and engaging puzzles. I was happy to find out that Broken Sword 5 - the Serpent's Curse (Part 1), follows the same patterns in these games (in most respects) and ended up being an enjoyable (albeit a little short) adventure on the Vita.


The story (and no, you don't need to know what a Broken Sword 1-4 is to start playing) involves 2 characters, Nico and George, a reporter and an art insurance agent, investigating a painting with a history. La Malediccio, a Spanish painting holds dark secrets, and certain factions (that are slowly unearthed in the telling) vie for the painting. I finished the game in about 3-4 hours but then realized there was no real conclusion. It is a "Part 1." Part 2 will come soon, and, according to a promo trailer for the game, if you purchase the 1st part, you get the next free! I hope that option sticks with the Vita, because the game had a cliff hanger with an obvious need to finish. It would make the $17 you spend on the game feel more worthwhile knowing you had another thing coming. 

solve someone's problem and they'll usually help you out!

The gameplay: You spend a lot of time swiping the screen looking for objects and people with which you can interact. You pick up items, some of which need to be combined in order to solve puzzles. A majority of the puzzles I was able to piece together on my own, but man sometimes I just had to consult a walkthrough to get un-stumped. One puzzle in particular I had no idea what they were asking me to do, and I wish there was a "get a hint" option that didn't tell you outright what to do, but maybe give you a nudge. 

Picking on the French police, eh? This guy's weakness? Flowing water makes him want to go to the bathroom. 

The game is full of spoken dialog. The voice acting is good and you'll enjoy hearing the story evolve through conversations. There are some weird philosophical things that arise through the game... a trait I've read is common in the Broken Sword series. 

A coffee shop that only serves to French nationalists. 

Graphically, the game is really pretty. The backgrounds of Paris and London are colorful and detailed. The character models look nice but simple. There isn't a lot of action in this game, so nothing really moves around. You walk and talk and solve.  

Look closely and you'll recognize Pink Floyd's Animals album cover. Nice!

Verdict: 
Broken Sword 5 the Serpent's Curse has an engaging story with colorful characters and clever puzzles. 
7.5/10

The humor is appreciated!

You will like this game if you
  • enjoy the old point and click story formula. Be ready for static backgrounds with you trying to figure out how all the pieces need to fit together
You might not like: 
  • the odd difficulty on a few puzzles
  • the shortness of the game (although part 2 is supposed to come free to existing owners of part 1...)
  • the fact that the real action doesn't start to happen until the very end, and then it's over!

While you consider the game, watch the promo trailer for it!




Thanks to "Revolution Games" for the opportunity to play the game!

What do you think? Are you going to point and click your way through the PS Store to download this adventure? Let us know in the comments below. 


 
                     
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