Sherlock Holmes Nemesis
After coming face-to-face with the mythical Cthulhu in his previous adventure on PC ( The Awakened ), Sherlock Holmes confronts Arsène Lupin, the gentleman-burglar made famous by the literature series penned by French writer Maurice Leblanc. Arsène Lupin, whose exploits are enjoyed by millions of readers throughout the world, provides the perfect foil for Holmes as he attempts to pull off the ultimate heist.
This battle of wits between the most famous detective of all time and the world's greatest thief takes us to late 19th century London. Arsène Lupin is a young French burglar at the beginning of a glittering career, who comes to town with one goal - defy Scotland Yard and Sherlock Holmes. He states that he will steal five objects of immense value in five days from prestigious sites such as the National Gallery, the British Museum, the Tower of London and even Buckingham Palace! Sherlock Holmes must use all his daring and ingenuity to avoid a terrible humiliation for England.
First of all, let me present to you the two major characters in this game. We have Sherlock, who is a cold and calculating mastermind detective and Arsene, an extravagant and insolent gentleman master thief. However, they both have a lot in common. One thing is the law. One is preserving it and the other is breaking it. They both also have huge egos which sometimes cloud their minds.
Over the years we have seen that Frogware's baby (the Sherlock Holmes games) have evolved a lot. Sound effect, graphics and story are much better than they were in the first game of the series - Sherlock Holmes: Mystery of the Mummy .
Of course, Sherlock needs to find his equal, so wouldn't it be fair to have his path cross that of the French master thief with an intellect as big as his own to give him a real challenge? As a child I watched the Arsene Lupin series on French television. Back then I saw Arsene more as a modern Robin Hood - a hero among the thieves. So now two of my childhood heroes are pitted against each other - two masters who won't rest until the other one is beaten. Sherlock has never found his match before. He never refused a good challenge, but in the end he wanted to show everyone around him that his is the greatest mind of all.
The French thief has been the subject of every newpaper headline for days and is now challenging the master detective with a hide and seek match. The message is very obvious - catch me if you can. At the beginning of the game Holmes is always one step behind Lupin, but the distance between them gets shorter as the game advances. This is indeed a battle between two great minds.
Most of the puzzles were quite challenging. There are some quizzes where questions are asked or riddles are found, and you need to type the answers. It kind of reminded me of our old text adventure games. For most of the quizzes, answers are easy to find, but some of them require a lot of thinking, and you will need to do some reading to find the answers. One sad thing about the puzzles is that some are not very well integrated into the story and not a lot of information can be found to solve them. Some of the puzzles are inventory based. There is a puzzle where you need to put some paintings in the correct order so you can get another image. The difficulty of this puzzle was increased because each of the paintings can be rotated 360 degrees. There are also a couple of mathematical and geometrical teasers. Visual and logical puzzles are also present in the game. One puzzle I didn't like was chasing and capturing the bird in the Buckingham Palace courtyard. It was long and not very interesting.
Graphics and Gameplay
The voice actors were well chosen and fit each character pretty well. There is not a lot unnecessary dialogue - almost everything said in the game has a purpose. Sound effects are equal to the ones we heard in the previous Sherlock Holmes games. Music is quite interesting. Most of it consists of classical pieces which were well selected and fit most of the scenes. There are a couple of repetitive phrases that keep occurring during the gameplay, but there is enough other dialogue to forget about this element. Watson's dialogue in the previous game was very predictable and not very diversified, but there is a big improvement in Sherlock Holmes Nemesis .
I didn't come across any bugs on either of the systems I played on. I started playing the game on my old computer which crashed on me. We bought a new one and I finished playing the game on that one. Thanks to MaG from Gameboomers who sent me a couple of saved games. The game ran smoothly on both systems.
Some of you might not know who Arsene Lupin is, but I can tell you he is a nice villain, and one that I had trouble pursuing! I had the impression the game was more about Arsene than anything else. The game had a nice story, and the main plot was interesting, but some parts of it could have been developed a bit more. Scenery was beautiful and colorful and puzzles were very diversified. All in all, it was a well balanced game. At some points in the game, choices need to be made, so be sure to save often or you might have to go back much further than you expected.
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