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Publisher: The Adventure Company
Minimum requirements: Windows XP/Vista; Pentium III 1.3 Ghz or equivalent; 512 MB RAM; 3000 MB hard drive space
Release date: Available now
Review by: Michael Smith
Gamers of a certain age (mine, for example) will recall the glory days of the adventure game. From Infocom’s legendary text-based titles of the 1980s, to 1993’s Myst, one of the first games released on CD-ROM and the top-selling game in industry history until The Sims unseated it in 2002, to modern offerings such as The Longest Journey (2006), adventure games have made a considerable contribution to the hobby. Over the years, their popularity has waned, supplanted by the more lucrative shooters, RPGs and MMOs, but the genre survives, thanks in part to the efforts of publisher Dreamcatcher Interactive, who has teamed with The Adventure Company to create a steady stream of new titles. One of their newest is Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis, a first-person mystery that places you in the shoes and deerstalker cap of Arthur Conan Doyle’s immortal sleuth.
It’s July of 1895, and Holmes receives a mysterious letter in the morning post at his 221B Baker Street home. Some quick detective work reveals that the letter was sent by the notorious French cat burglar Arsene Lupin, who has been terrorizing the continent and who now threatens to steal five precious artifacts from famous locations, including the British Museum and the Tower of London. Holmes, Watson and Inspector Lestrade of Scotland Yard must follow clues left by Lupin to track down the thief before he can complete his evil plan.
Despite the game being shipped on two CDs instead of one DVD, installing Nemesis is a smooth and fairly fast affair. System requirements are very low. Nemesis plays easily on almost any PC, and users with high-end rigs will be pleased with the advanced video settings available. In a puzzling design decision, however, it also requires the installation of Ageia PhysX drivers, which are more commonly used in action games.
Upon starting Nemesis, users are greeted by a stylish menu screen with the mournful sound of a violin playing in the background. The Options submenu allows the player to enable and adjust a surprising number of video features, such as antialiasing, anisotropic filtering, texture and shadow quality and water effects. The game’s keyboard controls can also be remapped.
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