Dungeon Detective 2: Devils and Details

Ah, Sniff Chewpaw. I remember you from last year. This second instalment's a bit more ambitious, though. We've got a window with an animated image of our hero and an inventory of both the items he's found and the statements he's received. We've got a couple of rudimentary click-type mini-games, an open map, day and night cycles, and a final puzzle in which we must present our evidence and correctly interpret it.

So, the good: I like the presentation of evidence format, which makes me feel like I'm in a real mystery story. Sniff is still as charming as ever, and I enjoyed the occasional jabs of humour. We hear more of his backstory, briefly alluded to in the previous instalment, and it appears he's not quite so abandoned as he thought. Which suggests that there's an overarching story involving something bigger going on with the old gnoll clan.

The bad: The map could stand to be more efficient. There are a few places that exist for no reason other than to bridge one room with another, and can therefore be eliminated. In fact, given the point-and-click format, it might have been better to zoom straight from one significant location to any other, rather than slowly navigate across the map. This is exacerbated by the fact that we're going from one made-up fantasy name to another rather than "north" or "south": there were a few times when I found myself going back and forth between two places instead of forwards to my destination. Also, I thought many of these room descriptions could stand to be briefer, especially when it's our second time there.

I also didn't like having to play a mini-game to earn the money I needed to obtain some of the necessary statements, or another one to access the crime scene. This sort of thing makes a game inaccessible to people of limited dexterity, sight, or processing power. But I'm rather fond of Sniff Chewpaw, otherwise I'd have tossed this story down to the end of my queue right away.

We are in fact having breakfast. It's three fried eggs (overdone: the yolks are like hockey pucks) with crispy bacon and toast and hash browns and strong, black coffee. Actually not bad, despite the eggs -- and after all, some people like their eggs that way.