A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this game contains no violence and presents a strong heroine and challenging puzzles. While it doesn't have a two-player mode, it's good to play with someone else because two heads looking for clues are always better than one. There is some discussion of "hoodoo" (voodoo) beliefs and practices and New Orleans' secret societies.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
NANCY DREW: LEGEND OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL takes place in New Orleans. Bruno Bolet has recently died in the old mansion, and when you stop by to check on his grandson, Henry, a person wearing a skeleton costume accosts you. Instead of being scared away, you decide to check into whether Bruno Bolet's death was really from a heart attack.
You solve the mystery by questioning characters and snooping around to find clues. As with all the past Nancy Drew mysteries, this game is loaded with puzzles. For one, you will need to make grave rubbings to decipher a code to open a mini-crypt. You will stumble upon secret rooms, passageways with peepholes, and a cemetery full of clues including some that are found on headstones.
Is it any good?
The 17th computer mystery in this series adds a new gameplay element to its award-winning formula. Not only do you play as Nancy Drew, but also, at times, you get to become her best friend Bess.
As for the game's spookiness, the music, rain, and periodic lightning help create an eerie mood, but it's never overpowering. And if you make a fatal mistake, the game returns you to the moment before that bad decision and gives you a second chance.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what makes this game scary. Would it be scary without the music? How about the dark lighting or the thunderstorm? Families can also talk about parts of the storyline they may not understand: What is voodoo and where did it come from? What are some of the myths about immortality? What is the role of secret societies in helping to put on Mardi Gras? Also, do you think it was OK for Bess to make the store owner get sick by putting hot sauce in his gumbo?
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