games, or point-and-click games as some may call them,
are best left in the domain of the PC where they have
thrived for many years. Although they are becoming
passé, there are still some good games being
released which bend and blend the genre to ensure
they will continue long into the 21st century.
Life is an old-school adventure game that won't tax
your grey matter. It's good for novices and those
hardcores that might want to run through such a game
in a couple of days. There's nothing for replay value
so I would recommend a rental if you think you're
good enough. There's always the walkthrough if you
have to return the game in a few hours.
Live has some CSI overtones to it although it doesn't
get as deep in the forensics as many fans of the show
might expect. The puzzles do relate to the story and
the gameplay for the most part, although there are
some instances when you feel as though you've been
detoured for no good reason. I suppose in that regard
it's not unlike a real murder investigation where
disruptive situations can and do occur when you least
McPherson is investigating a grizzly serial murder
on the cold streets of Chicago. Not getting anywhere
fast, the unsolved case begins to weigh heavy on her
psyche as she is reminded of a similar case that her
grandfather was involved in in Prague during the 20s.
Toggling between the two cases we witness the different
techniques and technologies separated not only by
an ocean but by two generations. One thing that we
do learn is that the advances in technologies are
no match for a criminal genius unless they are employed
by an equally sophisticated crime-solving mind.
include locating items, combining items to create
something new, tile sliding, code cracking and the
dreaded, box arranging. There's nothing new in any
of the puzzles but at least they relate to the gameplay
so as to not be so vague or difficult just for the
sake of being difficult. There is a certain logic
here that won't have you pulling your hair out, at
least not with the puzzles per se but the load times
will really start to get on your nerves. They don't
take long to switch from room to room but some puzzles
require that you enter and re-enter a number of rooms
over and over while you continue searching for your
of the clues, especially the text-based ones can be
hard to see on the Xbox. The PC monitor has much better
resolution. Plenty of detail is lost on the Xbox.
There is at least one puzzle that I just couldn't
get because of the lack of resolution. Thank heaven
look good when they're still, but the animation is
really awkward looking. Their mouths don't always
match up with what they're saying and are prone to
exaggerated movements which make the characters look
like puppets. If you're lucky it will give you nightmares.
The voiceacting is good but there are some rough spots
with poor phrasing. The dialog gives you insight into
Victoria's and Gus's motivations and thought processes
so you will definitely want to listen to it.
Life is the kind of game that will be regarded by
many as, "Not bad." It won't make anyone's
top-five-games-of-the-year list but it tells an interesting
tale and allows you to match wits with a couple of
notorious serial killers. And did I mention that the
dame ain't too bad looking?