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Last week, I celebrated the 100th anniversary of the publication of The Murder on the Links by Agatha Christie.
I’ve played puzzles games on the computer since the early days of Tetris. My current favorites are Microsoft Jigsaw in my browser and I Love Hue Too on my Android phone.
The broader world of video games is pretty foreign to me. I’ve always been too cheap to buy a game console. Once in a while, I’ll play a game that is available for Windows.
Given that experience, I’m also not very good at video games. But I wanted to continue to celebrate Agatha Christie’s birthday this month with a game based on her famous detective, Hercule Poirot.
Fortunately, the game play in Hercule Poirot: The First Cases isn’t too challenging. The two major tasks for the player are to search rooms for clues and to link clues to make deductions. I had some trouble in the beginning with both, but I also got better over time.
Unfortunately, I got stuck a couple of times, early on. It was always because I missed a clue in a room. I don’t have the patience to search again without a hint about what I’m looking for, so I cheated and used this page (from Adventure Gamers) that walks through the game to get me back on track again. I didn’t need that cheat later in the game when I improved my searching skills.
Much of the activity of the game is Poirot interviewing suspects and witnesses. Most of the time, the player doesn’t do anything but listen to and read the response. Once in a while, when an interview subject is testy or difficult, the player can choose between two different questions that take the conversation down a path that might yield more information or one where the person completely cuts Poirot off. There is an opportunity to attempt the conversation again to gather that clue so that the game can keep going. I enjoyed those times when I felt like my choices impacted the direction of the interview.
I bought the game on sale for half-price a few months ago. Given that it provided hours and hours of entertainment, it was well worth a cost that’s roughly equivalent to a matinee movie ticket or a trade paperback book.
I was especially grateful to have this game on my computer when I had COVID. It didn’t take too much energy but required just the right amount of attention to keep boredom at bay.
Two new Hercule Poirot games have been or will soon be released:
Are you a gamer? Do you have any suggestions for someone who is pretty new at this?