Secrets of the Ark - A Broken Sword Game  - Review

Secrets of the Ark - A Broken Sword Game
Ages: Teen

This is the fourth in the Broken Sword series of Nikki-and-George-do-adventure. So you know that at some point you will be encountering Nikki; meanwhile George has fallen on hard times and is now working in a Bail Bond office. Suddenly, into his life comes blond, curvatious Anna Marie followed by two goons. A lowly beginning for a game that enters into the Vatican, the Topkapi museum, a Rome monestary and the catacombs.

The Ark referred to here is the Ark of the Covenant -- the one holding tablets which are inscribed with the Ten commandments. The Arc that lead the Jews to battle and in some myths could release the Angel of Death. It is the latter force we are dealing with here.

Sequencing and finding the correct paths are the basics for many of the puzzles, as is using the PDA for hacking at every opportunity. Hacking is both fun and satisfying when you finally route into the computer you are trying to hack. As always you must pick up every item you find. Besides the puzzles, it is a surprising action oriented game with George moving boxes, jumping, running, evading enemies and hanging onto ledges. Because of the third person format, the characters are very much in your face. After two similar games, Secrets of Atlantis is the other one, I am wondering if I don't prefer action in the first person where the flow feels quicker and I don't feel that I have to handle every action the character takes.

Because of the locations, some will find the use of nuns as players, a rosary as a tool and a trip to the communion wafer factory irreverent. For the rest of us it is just a novel part of the game I mean - a communion wafer factory!

Fun Factor: A very active adventure game no time for strolling. A nice mix of action (no shooting) and adventure gaming,
Female Factor: The female characters don't always need rescuing, not only sexy, they are smart and play an active part in the game.
Player Friendly: Saves are activated by pressing ESC, and getting to the Pause menu. No automatic saves.

Reviewed by: Editor - 08/07

Location changes from bail bond office, derelict partial building, seedy hotel, Mafia front meat packing plant, apartment in Rome, the Vatican, Middle Eastern Palace, ancient ruins under catacomb's and a secret abandoned high tech science lab. Plot has lots of twists, voices are great, graphics good, music good, characters get in the way of some needed actions and character movement clumsy around doors and objects. The suggestive interlude where George and blond sleep together (not graphic - just indication) plus when George has to search a dead mobster who is hanging upside down in the meat packing plant - give it a Teen rating. End, all questions get answered, blond takes a bullet for George but Nickki and George are good to go for another adventure.

Reviewed by: Adison Garzon - 08/07

  • Secrets of the Ark - A Broken Sword Game
  • © The Adventure Company
  • Platform(s): WVISTA XP
  • To Order: Win $29.99