Supposedly when you hear about a “hidden-object game” the first thing that pops up in your imagination is something sugary, fairytale-like infested with flying unicorns, evil curses, wizardry or at least Sherlock-styled magnifying glasses and smoking pipes.
Yes, the HOG genre got a heavy overdose of cute and harmless imagery and plot-lines.
Criminal Case available for iOS/Android is a reckless attempt to challenge both the entire genre and personally you. Make sure your stomach isn’t weak though before launching this game.
Not so smooth criminal
In Criminal Case you assume the role of a greenhorn police detective who investigates various crime scenes. As luck would have it, all of the crimes involve homicide, manslaughter, and other quite unpleasant and shocking things.
The gameplay incorporates a number of elements, such as:
- Searching for evidence scattered through a particular crime scene. The faster you do it – the more lucrative your reward will be.
- Autopsies, interrogations, evidence examination etc. – e.g. at some point you’ll have to dig through rubbish in the suspect’s trash bucket, looking for a precious clue.
- Star collecting – these stars are sorta a currency in the game, and you’ll need them for different activities. The stars are awarded to you after you finish evidence searching and I gotta say without them your progress will be slower than a sloth high on barbiturates.
These are the three key components of the gameplay, mechanics of which are primarily based on primitive tapping/swiping, so there’s nothing to complain about regarding the controls.
As soon as you solve all the puzzles and harvest all the evidence, you’ll need to crack the case finally by arresting the real murderer and releasing the rest of the suspects.
But it’ll take you some time actually: as in any HOG you have an energy meter which is quite reluctant to recharge. And sometimes it doesn’t regenerate at all due to a malicious bug. It hinders your progress greatly making it not any more rapid than a steamroller.
It’s been done of course to urge you either to log-in to your Facebook account to play the game and get a daily bonus or to make you pay up to $170 for extra stuff. Although the app itself is totally free. Talking about crimes, right?
Have you ever seen a crime scene?
Well in this game you have a chance to enjoy the view of corpses swiss-cheesed with bullets, mutilated body parts, wrists and throats slit, dead women chopped in half, and many other abominable things. It’s strongly recommended to play the game on an empty stomach.
But what this bloodthirsty feast of nauseating meals greatly lacks is the bitter-salty sauce of black humor. As for me, the storyline of the game isn’t as elaborate as it could be and most of the characters (if not all of them) have the personality of wallpapers. No plot twists, no unpredictability, no nothing.
However the game still manages to be captivating, and I hope the script for the sequel will be done more carefully with cynical jokes, back-stabbing corrupt police officers, false accusations, a cross-cutting romantic theme, and so forth, so you could feel as a true hero who’s going to save the day.
Another shortcoming that ought to be fixed a.s.a.p. is a technical glitch that came with the latest version of the game: those who downloaded it were stripped of all their progress, making them start playing the game from the scratch. It’s pretty inhumane if you ask me.
Criminal Case breaks the vicious circle of the HOG banalities. It’s new, brave, and fresh which explains its enormous triumph in the genre. Trust me: you’ll love it. Escape the repetitive GroundHOG Day together with Criminal Case.