The Clue (Second Review)

Title		The Clue (Second Review)
Game Type	Strategy
Publisher	Kompart (1994)
Developer	NEO
HD Installable	Yes
Compatibility	All (AGA and CD32 versions available)
Submission      John Burns ( Profiled Reviewer

Note: This review is based on the 32 colour standard version. The AGA
version I believe has 256 colour graphics and enhanced sound effects. The
CD32 version has the same but does not incorporate a save game facility
though there is a password function to enable you to proceed from previous
preset positions.

Of all the reviews I have done so far this maybe will be the hardest.
Not, because the game is terribly bad or good, but because it was trying
to be different and as such suffers from this dichotomy.

Okay, so it's apoint and click adventure game but it also incorporates
enough elements of both strategy and RPG games to justify an inclusion
under those categories, The game puts you in the character of Matt
Stuyvesant, a poor downtrodden worker who arrives in London in the 1950s
with nothing to sustain himself but his wits and a certain ability to
succeed. Almost immediately you are involved in the politics of the
underworld, Not forgetting your first task; finding a place to stay; a
base of operations, which, once done you can proceed.

Without giving the game away your task is to rise from petty criminal
(robbing a news stand) to the ultimate crime of stealing the Crown Jewels.
Of course how you achieve this is down to you and the inevitable
accomplices whom you recruit.

The game interface itself is adequate but could have been better. For
instance, the parser used during conversations does contain the odd bit of
Germanglish which whilst not insurmountable, does show a lack of detail in
the testing.  But, given that the preset questions are fixed and answers
set this does not effect the overall game.

So where lies the problems?  Well they lie in the next, and in my view
best, part of the game; planning and executing a robbery. This is the
part where you set all the parameters for a 'job' using the plan which you
have devised. You can of course edit this plan or create alternatives at
any time afterwards, but, and it's a big but, once instituted you cannot
change the course of events - (so much for thinking on your feet).

So to summarise. A decent game with reasonable controls and graphics whose
only failing is in trying to be different. A different sort of game in
which, if you can forgive the obvious flaws, will give you some hours of
enjoyment. Hey, maybe in real life crime doesn't pay but to see your plan
successfully carried out does bring a certain measure of satisfaction, if
not elation - love it.

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