Sunday, November 9, 2014

Ben Jordan: The Cardinal Sins Review

The penultimate case of Ben Jordan: Paranormal Investigator is Ben's most dangerous yet, and it is also one of the best of the series.

Ben receives a mysterious call from a man in prison in Rome, who was given his number by an unknown caller.  The man murdered a priest, and claims that a demon made him do it.  Even though Ben doesn't like the circumstances behind the call, he heads to Rome with his friends in order to investigate the crime.  This is the darkest case yet, but it is also one of the best written.  The tension builds up right to the last minute of the episode, and plot threads are tied together masterfully.

This case once again has voice work, and like the deluxe editions, the voices are all well done though some times the audio volume varies.  The quality is as expected for a free indie adventure, but it is worth playing with voices on though.  The voices all work for the characters, with the three main characters in particular all receiving suitable voice performances for their personalities.  The personalities of the characters here really do shine, and both returning characters and the new characters that are important to the story arc are given a lot of background information.

The series has always been good at showing the wonder of the locations despite the low resolution, and that trend continues here.  Rome is a place with a lot of history, and a lot of mystery, and that's shown off quite well here.  The character portraits are all well done here as well, and once again fit with the game's art work, and show off a good deal more of the character than is possible with small sprites.  The music is also well done, with the exception of one early song which had some notes that grated a bit.  This didn't last long though, and the rest of the game's music was up to the high standards set by the rest of the games in the series.  The puzzles here are also pretty good this time around.  The missteps from the previous episode aren't repeated here, and all of the puzzles fit the world of the game.

Ben Jordan's seventh case is one of his strongest.  The missteps in the puzzles from the previous episode are made up for here, as all of the puzzles are well done, and all fit within the logic of the game's world.  There is one song that grates a bit, but the rest of the music is wonderful and fits the game's world quite well.  The audio volume of the voice work varies, but the voices are done pretty well for a free indie adventure, and all of the voices fit the character's personalities.  The best part of the game though is its story.  It is a wonderful, yet dark, tale, telling a suspenseful story where the tension builds up right up to the exiting final moments.  It ties up the plot threads together wonderfully, while leaving enough anticipation for the finale to come.

Final Verdict:

4½ out of 5

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