A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn reading, listening, and investigative skills as they solve a mystery. Some mini-games involve patterns and shapes. One puzzle teaches kids to read notes on a musical clef to play the bagpipes. Kids learn about Scottish history, including Mary Queen of Scots, clan tartans, and traditional cuisine. The Silent Spy delivers challenging puzzles and an engaging mystery steeped in Scottish culture.
The love of Kate Drew, Nancy's mother, for her family and the struggle she has balancing family with work is the game's major theme. Nancy is trying to thwart terrorists, which is a positive goal.
Positive Role Models
Nancy is a positive role model, demonstrating fearlessness, tenacity, and intelligence. The other characters she encounters have more complicated morals and motivations.
Ease of Play
The game offers two difficulty levels: Amateur Sleuth and Master Sleuth. Master Sleuth offers more challenging puzzles, no hints, and a less detailed checklist to keep track of goals. When you mess up a puzzle and get the "You Have Made a Fatal Error" message, you're always given a second chance.
Violence & Scariness
Characters are knocked unconscious by gas. Nancy’s life is threatened numerous times, and she's seen in perilous situations such as having to escape from a garbage compactor. Nancy must stop terrorists from launching a nonlethal biological weapon. One puzzle involves dismantling a bomb. Failure is met with the message "You Have Made a Fatal Error," but you're given a second chance.
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Products & Purchases
Clicking on the More ND link from the main menu takes players to a page where they can browse other games in the series and visit the publisher's website and its Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Pinterest pages.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Nancy Drew: The Silent Spy is the 29th mystery title in the Nancy Drew point-and-click adventure series from Her Interactive. There are two levels of difficulty, and younger kids might need a parent's help to solve some of the puzzles, which can't be skipped. There's a lot of reading required. The subject matter -- terrorists, biological weapons, threats to Nancy's life, and the events surrounding Nancy's mother's death -- is heavy for a Nancy Drew game and might upset younger players.
Is It Any Good?
The Silent Spy is a full-on spy thriller complete with secret hideouts, daring infiltrations, coded messages, and high-tech spy gadgets. Ruggedly scenic, history-rich Scotland is a fantastic setting, and kids will learn a lot about Scottish culture along the way. The puzzles are as challenging as ever, and the storytelling is mature and compelling. Like its predecessors, the game lets players fast-forward through the dialogue if they choose. The Silent Spy is a high point in a series that's already full of fantastic titles.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.