The Raven: Legacy Of A Master Thief is an episodic point and click murder mystery adventure by developers KING Art that will get you using your brain matter more than most games of 2013. In this first chapter you play as Anton Jacob Zellner, a constable in the Swedish police force, who has been assigned to assist Inspector Nicolas Legrand in tracking down a master criminal called ‘The Raven’ – who has seemingly returned after a long absence.
The Raven: L.O.A.M.T could best be described as an interactive Agatha Christie novel, and in fact, KING Art has done little to hide what surely must have been its biggest influence. This is not to say that it doesn’t have its own charm, it does, and the nods to Agatha Christie are part of this. For example, it’s amusing that the main protagonist Zellner resembles Poirot, he even reads crime novels, but within the context of the game it works.
The games systems are incredibly simple, you point the mouse cursor to an object of interest and examine it. Some objects can be picked up, combined, or given to NPC’S. You will need to have a keen eye to find every clue to help solve the case. If you do find that you have gotten stuck and cannot progress, then you can use an ability that reveals all points of interest in a particular scene for you to investigate, or it will add more blatant clues into your notebook.
The pacing is slow, both in the storytelling and in the characters movements. If you were looking for an action packed speedy romp, then you will be disappointed, this game will take time to get moving. Of course this might be exactly what you are looking for, but certain things appear to take just a little too long to accomplish, and sometimes Zellner can get stuck in an infinite loop of walking, forcing you to quit the game and restart. Fortunately the game auto-saves and you will most likely only have lost a few minuets.
The puzzles are not particularly hard, but there will be moments, especially later on in the game, where you will spend 10-15 minuets scratching your head trying to work out a possible combination of items to say distract someone. Although, all puzzles seem to have realistic solutions, and none feel out of place.
King Art has done a great job in making the characters likable; Zellner himself has a particular elderly wisdom that makes him quite charismatic. The voice acting is not on the same par as bigger studios, but it is still excellent, and each character has a distinct tone and demeanor.
The music is well crafted and suits the game setting perfectly, but does get repetitive after some time. There are also some timing issues with certain cut-scenes and dialogue, but nothing that distracts from the enjoyment as a whole.
Overall if you are looking to spend some time with a game that forces you to think hard about a situation rather than a reflex test, then The Raven: L.O.A.M.T should be a game that you should definitely play. The game is episodic, so it’s hard to understand exactly how the rest of the game will play out, but if the games store page on Steam is anything to go by, then at some point you will get to see the adventure from the criminals point of view.
The Raven: L.O.A.M.T is available right now in two versions. The Standard edition, and Digital Deluxe Edition will cost you $32.97 & $39.57 respectively. Both editions include a season pass that provides access to the other chapters as they become available on August 27th and September 24th 2013.
The reviewer received a review copy of the game for the PC platform from the publisher.
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