The stunning visuals are impressive, but you might wish you had more control in battles, and you'll spend more time reading than you'd expect. Graphically, Path to Nowhere really shines. Characters are drawn with an impressive level of detail, and dramatic music and sound effects heighten the tense mood. Much -- although not all -- of the dialogue is read aloud, and a list of tasks outlines what kids need to do to move forward. Along the way, kids amass a team of Sinners, criminals who help fight opponents with magical abilities, and can position them in battles against various foes.
That element -- particularly the shackles the main character uses to control Sinners -- is a dubious plot choice, and other aspects are also confusing. The introductory sequence is fairly vague, presenting characters who aren't fully identified, and overall, the plot feels needlessly drawn out. Fighting capabilities, too, can be unclear. Aside from the occasional conversational responses you click on (which don't always offer a choice; sometimes there's just one option), the battles are the game's main interactive element. Most scenes involve written descriptions of what's happening, shown over still images. Kids can place characters in certain positions at the start of battles, and shift them somewhat once they start. Sinners can only be moved to another square so many times, though, which can limit kids' ability to strategize -- and it can sometimes be hard to tell whose energy is depleting, because the red and green bars can overlap during combat. If kids are OK with a slower story pace and their involvement in battles primarily centering on them setting everyone's position up, they might enjoy checking the game out. Kids who want a chance to customize each battle move, though, may feel like they aren't able to contribute to the outcome enough -- and could, as a result, decide to discontinue walking down the Path to Nowhere.