Blue Toad Murder Files Episode 3 Review
Blue Toad Murder Files (BTMF) occupies quite a niche market falling under the genre of murder mystery. On the one hand such games can be fun and addictive, whereas on the other they can be very frustrating. Think along the lines of the DS’ Professor Layton series, BTMF is basically a videogame spin on the board game Cluedo.
The BTMF story is set in the small town of Little Riddle, and by the time you jump into Episode 3 the mayor and the windmill-residing village idiot have been killed. A robbery has taken place in the mansion and the town hall has just been the victim of an arson attack. You naturally take it upon yourself to deduce who started the fire and for what purpose. After finding out the likely suspects behind the fire, you visit each in turn for questioning. However, puzzles need to be solved first, with each becoming slightly more complicated than the last. Puzzles range from deducing who ate the sausage to finding out where a woman’s slippers were buried. Don’t be fooled by the silliness of these puzzles though, as some require a lot of concentration and could leave you feeling frustrated if you fail.
In addition to the puzzles, your memory will also get a work out. At intervals you will be reviewing the facts of the case, with questions in the same vain as “What did X mention?” and so on. This is to make sure you’re paying attention and not ignoring the narrator, who has a habit of rambling. Of course, the narrator is useful (he does have his moments, especially when it comes to saying “murder”), but when it comes to BTMF, the citizens of Little Riddle are what really shine through. Ranging from the American Jewellers to the Librarian whose life involves nothing but books, all are contained in a little village with English charm. One old lady even squeezes your dog’s (who’s called Watson) privates!
Other than the narrator, the length of the episodes are also quite irritating. For someone who can complete puzzles at a reasonable level, the whole episode can take between between one and a half to three hours to complete. Unlike most games, there is also very little replayablilty involved in BTMF. However, developers Relentless have clearly taken this into account, because this episode of the Blue Toad Murder Files is free until the end of March (only if you purchased Episode 1 or 2, that is).
BTMF is a quaint and fun game to waste a few hours on a Sunday afternoon, either with up to four players or on your own if you feel like testing your mettle against the various puzzles. If you are on the fence about the game, you should definitely give the first Episode a try, as the episodes are certainly addictive. It was surprisingly joy to play, but quickly joy could turn to anger and frustration after getting a few of the puzzles wrong!