|System: PC, PS3||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Telltale Games||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Telltale Games||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Aug. 31, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
By the time you make your way into the bowels (trust me, theres no pun intended here) of the game, youll see all of the pieces of the presentation come neatly together to form a cohesive, satisfying experience that is perhaps the perfect bite for fans of Sam & Max. At roughly four to five hours in length, The City That Dares Not Sleep is a pretty short romp. That being said, the game is paced amazingly well, and having the season doled out episodically will likely prove a great value for folks who still relish this style of gameplay.
Though the visuals are far from cutting edge, the facial animations and expressions are some of the very best artistic renderings youll see in a current-gen game. Telltale Games are masters in their field, and the games graphics play no small part in telling this sordid tale. The camera pans and other visual cues do a great job of adding subtle nuance to plot points, as well as offering direction to the player.
For this review, I played the game on an average PC with a mid-range video card (ATI 4670). There arent many options when it comes to tweaking the graphical fidelity, but its a sensible interface considering the target audience. The menus are easy to navigate, and though you wont be wowed by what The City That Dares Not Sleep has to offer in a technical sense, its a game thats quite easy on the eyes.
If theres one thing that truly stands out above all else, though, its the voice acting in the game. You may not find the biggest names in the business populating the credits, but the performances are absolutely stellar. The dialogue is made golden by the flawless execution of the voice talent. The themes and sound effects also do a bang-up job of capping off the vibe of this quirky, loveable adventure.
Truth be told, Im not the biggest fan of point-and-click adventure games. I had a great time with the genre back in the early 90s, but my interest eventually gave way to other types of gameplay. That being said, The City That Dares Not Sleep has renewed my interest in this particular series, and I cant wait to go back and play through the episodes Ive missed. Though the games length might be a bit short for some, I found it to be the perfect slice for my tastes. My only real gripe is that this episode is only available as part of a season package. Telltale Games sales approach seems to be counter to the whole notion of episodic content, but folks who are on the fence can still try before they buy.
CCC Freelance Writer