Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror
Generally speaking, I have to be in the right mood to enjoy point-and-click adventures. They're about as linear as a game can get, and they don't give you much in the action and replay departments. Thankfully, I was in the right mood. And besides. Broken Sword II has a funny and thoroughly entertaining story line. I wanted to keep going to see what would happen next--that is, if I could figure out the next puzzle. In addition, there's a huge cast of interesting characters to run into, tons of talented voicework, and rich, colorful graphics throughout the game. Of course, the game isn't without a few problems. First, even though the background graphics and character animation is topnotch, some graphics get a bit washed-out, making it difficult to see what's what (and in some cases, making it difficult to solve a puzzle). Most puzzles are easy to sort through, but others are ridiculously obscure (nice in a way, since it exercises your brain, but also very frustrating). Sure, this is the nature of point-and-dick adventures to a certain degree, but this doesn't excuse those extra-toughies. You'll probably have to resort to a walkthrough at one point or another. And finally, the saving interface is klunky--probably due to the port from the PC to the PlayStation. But as far as PC ports go, Broken Sword II is quite enjoyable.
This is a dying breed of games, which is a crying shame. Some of you remember this from the PC a couple of years ago, and the translation to PS is more than admirable--if a little slow in the ol' disc access dept. The story line is involving, and more importantly it's actually interesting. The characters' development is topnotch (you actually care what happens to them) and the presentation is very good. It plays even better if you have a mouse.
Nearly everything about Broken Sword II can be described in one word: "lush." Scenery is lavishly detailed and full of stuff to play with. The voice acting (of which you'll hear plenty) is topnotch. And the game's story is packed with clever twists and loads of funny moments. I only wish some of the puzzles weren't so obscure. There's nothing worse in these point-and-dick games than getting stuck just 'cause you've hit a puzzle that makes no sense.
This game brought back memories of playing King's Quest 4 on my old Apple IIGS. If you've got the patience and have played and enjoyed games like Myst or The 7th Guest, you might enjoy it. But I just couldn't get into it. Like Shawn said, some of the puzzles are very frustrating or obscure, sometimes leading to peeking at a walk-through to get by. Animation and storywise, it's fine, but pointing-and-clicking isn't enough anymore.
Download Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP