Nancy Drew: Legend of the Crystal Skull

Common Sense Media says

Fulfilling mystery has spooky sleuthing & puzzles.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Nancy is a strong heroine. Bess does a few devious things like putting hot sauce on someone's food to make them sick.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

This is the 17th mystery in this software series.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

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?

QUALITY
 

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.

Families can talk 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?

Game details

Platforms:Windows
Price:$19.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Her Interactive
Release date:October 8, 2007
Genre:Role Playing
ESRB rating:E for (Windows)

This review of Nancy Drew: Legend of the Crystal Skull was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 1, 5, and 9 year old Written byAG Fan Parent July 2, 2012
AGE
12
QUALITY
 
LEARNING

Extremely Scary, Extremely Difficult, Extremely One to Skip

This game is two of the things to encounter most often with Nancy Drew games -- extremely scary and extremely difficult. However, it seems to put both of those things to an even bigger extreme for this one. Literally less then 3 minutes into the game, you walk into a dark scary house, see a skeleton, everything goes black, and the skeleton appears again -- right up against your face. If this weren't enough for scariness, the whole house is nearly empty during the game and is all dark. It's impossible to find your way around or see any people -- except a creepy man who scared the living daylights out of my 9-year-old daughter. It is also extremely difficult, because though we didn't get far enough to have to solve puzzles, there were ones to be solved, and not only that, but it was impossible to know what to do. My daughter got back on the game at least 4 times to look around, but couldn't find any new places or people that would make the game go on. We hardly got anywhere, because it was impossible to know what to do. Though you do get to play on Nancy's friend, there's not much to do with her at least at the beginning, and even though the place she's at (a store) is lit, it's a sort of eery yellow lighting and it still gives off a scary glow. Though Nancy Drew is a very loveable character, and her games are very fun, this one, like the Ghost Dogs one, is definitely one to skip for any child under about 11. My 9-year-old daughter had trouble sleeping because it terrified her.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 13 years old Written byDangerRanger101 July 26, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

This game should NOT!!!Be rated E, so be cautious

The game is fairly difficult and it may take you a while to figure out what to do. But like all of the other games Nancy is a good role model, but she goes a little off here by having her friend, Bess do things that she doesn't feel comfortable with. Also the ending was a little dissapointing because of the culprit choice atleast to me. So if you don't like hard puzzles or good people going bad, than this isn't really the game for you. Also the animals can kill you, so that may be kind of scary too and the housekeeper, Renee really gave me the creeps and other kids will probably find her pretty creepy. But the scariest part was the beginning. The game encourages you to be in total darkeness, while it sounds like fun let's not forget who the target audience is, kids six and under will definetly get scared and it really pushes the E rating. On the more positive side, not all kids get scared very easily and it can be fun to get scared. The game is also very fun with the creepy scenary because let's not forget that this is a mystery. Overall, I think this is a fun game but there should be an option to skip a hard puzzle. Also the beginning doesn't fell quite necessary, to me it felt more like an entrance to a horror game rather than a mystery but I guess it's not all mystery, there has to be some horror to spice it up. But some of the content may not be the best for kids, like the beginning and the deaths that involve the animals, like Bernie the alligator. But I feel that this is a good game for a ten-year old with not only a fun game and interesting plot but with Nancy as a good role model, even if she tries to force her friend to do bad things, but hey, this is Nancy Drew we're talking about!
What other families should know
Great role models
Too much violence
Teen, 14 years old Written byshayshay96 March 21, 2011
AGE
13
QUALITY
 

Not for 10+

This game was one of my faorites, because it featured an attractie guy (in my opinion, though, he may scare others) plus you got to play as both nancy and bess marvin, which was a nice feature. Though the game does involve Bess putting hot sauce in a mans food so he gets sick, it is also a very challenging game so i would recomend it to older kids ( 13+) so they understand the message is not to hurt others to make people sick, but to help people (How they help henry). I found it a challenging game that was a little creepy. I got scared in the begining as there is a masked skeloton, and the power goes out. You play the whole game in darkness and the rain, and can get frightening at times. overall its a very good game.
What other families should know
Great role models

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