Sherlock Holmes: The Testament of Sherlock Holmes Review
We’ve seen Robert Downey Jr. play him on the big screen, Benedict Cumberbatch play a modernised version on the small screen and now you can play him. Another addition to the Sherlock Holmes franchise, The Testament of Sherlock Holmes.
This game involves frolicking around 1900’s London solving crimes and turning up before Scotland Yard do. This is, I believe, Frogwares first game to be released on anything other than PC, but by no means their first Sherlock Holmes title. So they’ve got the plot cracked. It’s you the standard Sherlock Holmes. You investigate seemingly unsolvable crimes, solve them and make the police look like complete idiots. Unfortunately the game play is annoyingly clunky for an Xbox 360 title.
This is one game where you have to pay a lot of attention to every cut scene. And I mean every one of them. If you, like me, try to skip them there is a whole world of pain attempting to correctly do the puzzle ten minutes later. Don’t skip the cut scenes. Luckily everything that is said, Watson writes down in a handily little note book, but having to read that every five minutes get’s annoying. The puzzles themselves are a little harder than I anticipated, I got so frustrated with one quite early on that led me to stop playing for the rest of that day. After investigating a crime seen you have to make your deductions. Each deduction Holmes has made could mean one of three things, and as I mentioned before if you haven’t been playing attention you have no hope. You then have to work your way through a sort of spider diagram getting every deduction correct before you can move on. This cripples the flow of the game play and makes you want to throw your controller at the TV.
There are ridiculous puzzles at the crime scenes as well that you need to solve before moving on. Many of which are not explained very well and you sit there looking at the screen wondering what the hell you’re meant to be doing. The crime scenes themselves can be quite fun. There’s some nice looking mutilated bodies, but unfortunately you basically have too look round a room twice, once with normal Holmes and then one with Holmes sixth sense to find clues that you first missed. The clues can be on the floor or up high on ceilings which gives you a lot of time to look at the visuals.
The graphics themselves are fairly standard, they’re nowhere near as good as we see in the new EA sports releases but you get what’s going on. It’s not realistic, but then does it need to be? There are very few glitches and you are able to move very smoothly around in either first or third person and this can be done easily.
The controls are very basic and there is usually a pop-up on screen telling you which button you should be pressing if you get lost. Which is very hard to do.Move and look are the same as any other game on the Xbox 360 and every time you arrive at something to look at it will tell you what to press. Flicking through items you have in your inventory is the same as flicking though weapons. It’s all pretty generic and no one should have any problems picking them up.
Overall, I think that maybe this should have stayed on the PC or even a DS game (which I think is in development) it just really doesn’t feel right playing a Mystery adventure game on the Xbox 360. It’s a very logic based game with no action at all. Possibly being able to do a bit more than point and click would have made this game better for the platform it has been released on. I would have loved this game as an iPad app or even on the DS but I feel it falls short for the Xbox 360.