Nancy Drew: The Captive Curse

Common Sense Media says

Solve a mystery while learning about German folklore.

Age(i)

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

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The game encourages players to be observant and think logically to solve puzzles.

Positive role models

Nancy is an articulate, observant, and persistent young lady who makes a great role model. Despite being in her teens, her detective skills are world-renowned.

Ease of play

Players can play as Senior or Junior Detective, the latter providing a task list to keep players on track as to what they need to do next. No matter which mode is selected, though, puzzles are challenging and can't be skipped. In an added twist, Nancy can't always use her cellphone to call her friends for advice due to "poor reception." If a fatal mistake is made that causes Nancy to die, you have a redo which brings you back to the moment before making a bad decision. The navigation is this game can be confusing.

Violence

There are some scary moments and mild violence. A woman is chased and grabbed by a growling creature. The player can cause Nancy to make several "fatal" mistakes that end the game, including falling into a pit and getting severely burned by a glass-maker's oven (but you always get a redo). One of the mini-games involves moving monster tiles to "kill" cow tiles, which makes X's appear over the cow's eyes to show that they're dead.

Sex
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

From the main menu (Nancy's Desk), players can click on a Scrapbook that contains summaries of the first 23 Nancy Drew games by Her Interactive, but there are no links to outside websites or prompts to purchase the games.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Nancy Drew: The Captive Curse is the 24th adventure game in a long-running series of interactive mysteries starring teenaged sleuth Nancy Drew. The game offers two modes of difficulty, and both contain challenging puzzles and mini-games that can't be skipped. The story, in which Nancy investigates reports of a monster terrorizing the community, contains some scary moments and mild violence. The game also exposes players to German culture, folklore, and language.

Parents say

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Kids say

What's it about?

In NANCY DREW: THE CAPTIVE CURSE, Nancy travels to Germany to investigate reports of a creature that has been terrorizing a remote Bavarian castle and surrounding community. As Nancy, players investigate the mystery by searching for clues, interviewing suspects, and completing mini-games and inventory-based puzzles.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The Captive Curse follows the same successful formula as previous Nancy Drew mysteries, combining challenging inventory puzzles and mini-games with a cast of interesting characters to talk to. There are also collectibles to hunt for (coins and medallions scattered throughout the scenery) and trophies to earn. The setting is the weak link this time around, however. The nondescript castle has a layout that makes it difficult and confusing to navigate, and the same goes for the game's other two primary locations. The good does outweigh the bad, but The Captive Curse isn't quite in the same league as some of the other top Nancy Drew mysteries.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the words that they learned in German. Do some of the German words sound similar to their English equivalents (such as "maus" for "mouse," and "einhorn" for "unicorn.")

  • Families can also talk about other famous monster myths, such as yeti and the Loch Ness Monster. Why are there so many stories about monsters, and why do you think people make them up?

Game details

Platforms:Windows, Mac
Price:$19.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Her Interactive
Release date:June 28, 2011
Genre:Adventure
ESRB rating:E10+ for Mild Violence (Mac, Windows)

This review of Nancy Drew: The Captive Curse 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; OK 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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Teen, 14 years old Written bySuperSadie March 18, 2012
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

~Warning, this Review has some Spoilers!~ c:

I think this game is really great, (just finished playing it a couple hours ago!) and it's good in plot. However, I think the creators needed to go more into depth with the plot. What exactly happened to the girls who were kidnapped? Was there a real monster back in the day? These questions aren't answered, only cleverly avoided. But, when there are certain points in the game where the monster was, say, on the castle grounds or something, and Nancy was approaching a scene where she'd interact with the said monster, my pulse would quicken and I'd start to sweat, not knowing what to expect. Would I have to control Nancy and make sure she didn't get attacked by this monster? Or would Nancy be safe? These questions would race through my head as I was playing. There were quite a few times where I was really puzzled, and Nancy didn't have anything new on her checklist or the 'hint hotline' didn't help, but I managed to struggle through and finish the game. There are some puzzles which are really difficult, and a 10 year old probably wouldn't be able to solve. But with a little help, they should be able to get it. Overall, I give this game a 7/10. If only they went more into the plot and told us about the missing girls! I'd also like to know how Renate's sister died while trying to protect her.. I wish they went more into the backstory! But, overall, this game was very good and I recommend it. Some parts made me jump back a little, but they were just jump scares. c: This game was definitely a favorite.
Kid, 12 years old November 17, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Great German culture!

I was excited about this game! The graphics and culture made my mouth hang open! Beautiful scenery, awesome architechual culture same with clothing! One of the things that bothered me a little bit is I expected it to be more scary! (seriously a german monster! it just sounds scary!) One of the things I loved about this one was: The charectors! They were so cool and their german accents! ugh amazing! I dont actually have any warnings this game is pretty easy!
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Teen, 13 years old Written by10987654321bri July 21, 2011
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

not for young kids but great for pre-teens

i think itz great
What other families should know
Too much violence

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