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While the aesthetics and atmosphere closely mimic that of its prequel, the soul that was present in the first game seems to have been stripped away, leaving a story that, while interesting, doesn't quite engage the player in the same way that Hotel Dusk did. That being said, despite the drop in overall quality, Last Window still has moments where it lives up to its predecessor. It's a shame that Cing no longer exists, as it's fairly obvious that Kyle Hyde's journey for answers is still ongoing by the end of the game. As a swan song, though, Cing could have done much worse than Last Window. Those who are looking for an adventure on the same level as Hotel Dusk may be somewhat disappointed, but there is no question that despite the chinks in its armor, Last Window is still an adventure game that's worth playing.
Overall, Last Window won't suit everyone's style. It's a lot slower than similar games on the DS, and one that requires time and patience to get through and this isn't helped by the text-heavy nature of the game. However, for those who can appreciate graphic adventure games, it makes notable improvements over its predecessor resulting in a rewarding experience that will keep you occupied for many hours.
As with practically all of Cing's output, Last Window: The Secret of Cape West is a bit of an acquired taste. Less a game and more a sequence of tightly-focused - if not always successful - set-pieces, it's the rich atmosphere and masterful sense of narrative that drives the experience along. Those of a less patient disposition will undoubtedly balk at Last Window's deliberate pace and text-heavy delivery but anyone looking for a sophisticated, stylish slab of hard-boiled intrigue should revel in Cing's lovingly-realised world.
Last Window's unique marriage of art, story and game feels at once contemporary and anachronistic. Pitched to the Professor Layton
crowd, its ponderous pacing and obscure puzzles will seem laborious, too much work for too little payoff. For those hankering after a modern take on Broken Sword
, the emphasis on dialogue and ambiance will feel as though substance has been traded for style. As such, the game is best viewed as a curio quite unlike anything else, an experience that deserves its niche off gaming's highway, and whose mild shortcomings are made up for by a combination of uniqueness and general competence.
Last Window : Le Secret de Cape West est la digne suite d'Hotel Dusk, un roman interactif qui avait l'insigne mérite de s'assumer comme tel. Il bénéficie des mêmes qualités narratives, mises en exergue au détriment du gameplay, et du même style visuel unique et fascinant. Il est dommage que son entame un peu poussive et que sa propension à la redite le relèguent un peu en deçà de son prédécesseur, qui bénéficiait de surcroît de l'effet de surprise. Les adeptes des productions CING y trouveront toutefois un titre captivant, difficile à lâcher à partir du moment où l'on a réussi à s'y plonger, à l'instar d'un bon polar.