Sherlock Holmes Chapter One is the newest iteration of the world’s greatest detective in digital format. Strangely enough, Sherlock Holmes has had a late start on showing up onto the video game medium. Ever since 2002, there have been some fairly frequent installments by developer Frogwares regarding Holmes and company. However, these games were only exclusive for the PC and Nintendo consoles, respectively. Therefore, many gamers have missed out on these brain-twisting adventures. Luckily, the newest addition of the famed detective’s video game library will be a multi-platform offering, giving a broader audience a chance to check out what these titles are all about. Of course, the developers over at Frogwares are taking into account the evolution of action-adventure games in which Chapter One will acknowledge.
The story of Sherlock Holmes Chapter One will serve as a prequel to the other games. Holmes will be in his early 20’s and will be acting as a “consulting detective” during a murder scenario at his home island of Cordona. His freakish observation skills will be in their infancy and players will be tasked with honing them. Based on what was shown in the recent trailer, this game has a vibe to it that’s akin to the Hitman series. It will take patience, puzzle-solving skills, and even sharp-shooting tactics to find the murderer and serve justice. There is a lot to digest with this game and gamers that are clamoring for something more cerebral might want to consider tagging along with Sherlock and his companions.
There is no question that the world of Sherlock Holmes comes with a wealth of material to sift through. From a gameplay perspective, Sherlock Holmes Chapter One seems to hit all the right notes in being in Holme’s skin. From what the Batman Arkham series accomplish in making players “feel” like Batman, Chapter One should excel in making players “feel” like Holmes. This game will be open-world and Sherlock will be free to explore anywhere on the map. Of course, there will be blockades, guards, and gates that will need to be bypassed. Players will need to sneak, fight, charm, and even disguise their way into certain segments. The island of Cordona will be separated into five unique districts that will each have its own culture and identity. As a whole, the descendants of the Ottoman Empire generally populate the island, giving it an exotic and enticing design.
The map will be littered with side-quests, colorful characters, activities, and all manners of nook and crannies to explore. Depending on where Sherlock is, what he is wearing will matter. While attending a ball at a rich part of the island, dressing dapper will garner the attention of the residents. Of course, if Sherlock shows up dressed in rags, nobody will let him in, much less give him information. Using the customization menu on how Sherlock looks will be key to getting closer to suspects, obtaining clues, and entering restricted areas. Outfits can be purchased by vendors and they can even be collected by completing quests. Each little adornment will either increase or decrease the “credibility” of Holme’s disguise in which can be either beneficial or detrimental to the quest.
Every NPC throughout the map can be interacted with. Players can even observe the behavior and characteristics of people by using the “concentration mode.” This will engage an in-game sub-menu to where players will be able to read how people are in three distinct levels. The first is occupation, the second is dependant on Holme’s disguise and the third level is a particular personality quirk. Using this mode will assist players in deciphering whether or not people will help them, drive them off or even attack. By gathering clues, players can accuse their suspects of a crime anytime they please. This game won’t give players a checklist of things to find, then highlight the actual killer to chase down. No, instead players will be tasked with using their own gut instinct and intuition to find the criminal. Just know that accusing the wrong person could have dire consequences. Hence, it is best not to go hog wild and accuse everyone that seems even remotely guilty. It will make the finding of the true criminal much more difficult to find as a result.
Yes, there will also be combat in Sherlock Holmes Chapter One. Even though it isn’t the deepest combat system, it appears to be effective enough. Holmes can use his pistol and systemically shoot enemies to either neutralize or kill them. Gunfights are a rare occurrence in this game and players can even use the options menu to turn them off completely if they choose. Sherlock has a small health meter and he can go down easily. Frequent dodges and switching of cover will be the most effective way to win in this game. Enemies will flank from all directions. Some with charge head-on while unleashing a flurry of bullets, while others will get in close for a melee attack. Sherlock has the ability to slow down time for more precise aiming, just like the “Dead Eye” feature in Red Dead Redemption. This will be needed to break away armor and even pinpoint environmental hazards to stun them. If players want more action, the map has “Bandit Lairs” to where they can fight as many enemies as they want for a money reward and other goodies.
Eye for Adventure
Any player can have played the last three Assassin’s Creed games and enjoyed the side-quests that involved solving mysteries, then Sherlock Holmes Chapter One is catered just for you. Thus, players that just enjoy solving puzzles, or maybe just being a fan of the titular character, will get a kick out of this title. The source material seems to be highly respected with this game, even though there are some liberties taken. Nonetheless, this game seems to feature endless hours of exploration and brain-teasing fun for Holme’s fans. This game will be launching on November 16th for the PlayStation, Xbox, and PC.