Nancy Drew: Secrets Can Kill! (Remastered)

Game review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Nancy Drew: Secrets Can Kill! (Remastered) Game Poster Image
Drew's first game holds mystery with more mature themes.

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 3 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Drug use by teens is portrayed as an obvious negative.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Nancy Drew is a smart, intrepid, independent teen. She is never cowed and always ready to do what is needed of her. She also comes across as compassionate and understanding of the problems of others.

Ease of Play

You can play on either "Junior" or "Senior Detective" level, which effects the difficulty of the puzzles but doesn't really change the challenge involved in solving the mystery itself. Some of these puzzles are quite challenging even at junior level. Kids will need a good deal of patience and focus.

Violence

The story revolves around the murder of a high school student. The crime is never seen, but is talked about throughout. He was killed by being pushed down stairs. In one scene, Nancy Drew (you, playing from a first-person perspective) gets threatened at gunpoint, and is hit by her assailant with the gun.

Sex

There's some mild flirting.

Language
Consumerism

From the home screen, you can access the "case book" of Nancy's other adventures (i.e., other computer games).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A portion of the plot revolves around steroids used by high school athletes.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Nancy Drew: Secrets Can Kill! (Remastered) is a a remake of the original Nancy Drew computer game from Her Interactive which originally came out in 1998. The visuals have all been updated to be in 3-D, but much of the puzzles and suspect interviews remain the same. For those who played the original, though, this remastered version does have a completely new and different ending. Parents should know that this Nancy Drew game skews a little older than most because the story revolves around the murder of a teenager, Nancy gets threatened at gunpoint in one scene, and taking of illegal steroids plays a big part in the mystery.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 14 and 16 year old Written byCharlotte135 August 30, 2010

A very good game

My daughter loves these games and they are very safe. She could be doing a lot worse and they are educational. You can't get much better than Nancy Drew.
Parent of a 15 year old Written byAeliene September 2, 2010

Iffy remake but great fun!

I played and loved the first game. I don't think as much should have been changed but, it is an overall good game. A little easy for the most part (though... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old November 17, 2011

Its OK

So as you see im 12 (sad I know) and I JUST missed the first ND that came out (Secrets Can Kill) and I never got to play the WHOLE origanal game ( cry ) so I wa... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old November 11, 2013

Bloody but still E10+

...it has mild blood but becareful...

What's it about?

NANCY DREW: SECRETS CAN KILL (REMASTERED) is an updated remake of the first Nancy Drew computer game from Her Interactive, originally released in 1998. With new, upgraded graphics, this game follows the same general plot as the original: Nancy goes undercover as a new student at a high school where a teen football player has just been murdered. As she investigates, she discovers secrets held by several of the students (including some interaction with illegal steroids). The ending -- and the culprit -- have been changed from the original game.

Is it any good?

 The Nancy Drew games have come a long way in the past twelve years, with major improvements in sound and graphics. The first one ever, Nancy Drew: Secrets Can Kill!, had one of the best stories, though. And at this point in time, many fans of the series have probably never played the original. So this new remastered version was a great way for Her Interactive to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Nancy Drew character. There are aspects of this new Secrets Can Kill! that still seem a bit old, like the very flat looking map used to travel between destinations. But the upgraded 3-D characters definitely look great. For all the technical improvements, though, the selling point here is still the really, really great story. There are tons of coded messages to find and decipher in this mystery, which makes playing a blast for fans of brainy puzzle games. Plus, for anyone who did play the original, there's whole new killer this time around, which is as good a reason as any to play it again.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the dangers of steroids. Why should they be avoided, especially by teens? When  you hear about a professional athlete in real life who has taken steroids, how does that change your opinion of him or her?

  • One of the characters in the story is suffering from burnout as a result of too much pressure to get into a good college. Do you know anybody who has felt similar academic pressure? How can teens deal with such pressures without risking burnout themselves?

  • Nancy Drew may be one of the most famous female protagonists in history, but does that necessarily make this a "girl game?" Can boys enjoy this game just as much?

Game details

  • Platforms: Mac, Windows
  • Price: $19.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Her Interactive
  • Release date: August 24, 2010
  • Genre: Girl
  • ESRB rating: E10+ for Violence, Drug Reference

For kids who love whodunnits

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate