🐳 Featured Group: Gameplay feature: Auto-mapping

Circle of Blood

aka: BS1, Baphomets Fluch, Broken Sword: Il Segreto dei Templari, Broken Sword: La leyenda de los Templarios, Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars, Les Chevaliers de Baphomet, Slomannyj Mech: Ten' Tamplierov
Moby ID: 499

[ All ] [ DOS ] [ Game Boy Advance ] [ Macintosh ] [ Palm OS ] [ PlayStation ] [ Windows ] [ Windows Mobile ]

Critic Reviews add missing review

Average score: 84% (based on 73 ratings)

Player Reviews

Average score: 4.0 out of 5 (based on 335 ratings with 13 reviews)

An extremely well-executed adventure for the Game Boy Advance.

The Good
I was surprised when I first heard that an adventure series, previously released for the PC and Playstation, was going to be ported to the Game Boy Advance. Having never had the opportunity to play this game, and being quite a fan of adventure games, I sought out this game for the Game Boy Advance. Suffice to say, this game is one of my most pleasant buys I've made so far for the little handheld console.

The game itself starts out in Paris, where George Stobbart is quietly enjoying his vacation. In the beginning, the peaceful life takes a turn for the worse when the restaurant where Stobbart is relaxing is suddenly blown up, and a single man dies in the incident. For various reasons, George feels that he has to solve the mystery. Little does he know that this little adventure will soon turn out to be a world-wide quest of epic proportions...

I am very surprised how well an adventure game works for the GBA. Broken Sword originally used a point-and-click system, but the developers chose to implent a different system for the GBA release. It reminds me pretty much of playing style found in Grim Fandango... The player controls George movement with the D-Pad, essentially making George the 'cursor' in the game. Whenever the player comes near a usable object, a small icon pops near the object in question, usually signifying what one can do with the object(ie. a pointing hand shows that George can walk towards a new room, whilst magnifying glass signifies that George can take a closer look at the object). The player interacts with objects using the A Button, whilst he can use the B Button to look at an object. The L-Pad brings up the inventory, in which the player can use an object or merge two objects together. The R-Pad brings up a nifty feature that will reveal all the hotspots within a room. Whilst this option makes the game less difficult, it also prevent the game from turning into a 'find-the-hotspot/pixel' game.

The graphics have been extremely well ported from the PC/PS versions to the GBA version. Every room is displayed with crisp detail, and characters only become somewhat pixelated when they come very close to the screen. All icons found in the game define very well what they're represent.

The sound effects and music are well represented. The music ranges from average to very good. The sound effects are somewhat average, they don't really stand out. Naturally, the GBA version does not have any speech, unlike its PC and PS version.

And of course, now I come to one of the (if not, the) most important part of an adventure game : the story. Suffice to say, Broken Sword delivers. Actually, Broken Sword delivers EXTREMELY well. The mystery starts out good, with a mysterious clown blowing up a restaurant. Once the smoke clears, you can start digging up several clues, and meet a fascinating French reporter who can aid in solving the murder. However, once the player starts digging further into the mystery, and searching for the identity of the murderer, everything gets turned upside down. Once you think that you have figured someone/something out, a new clue is revealed that invalidates your theories, and your mind immediately start to absorb all the information, and new questions arise... the story will surely hold you from the explosive start to the surprising ending.

Of course, an adventure game can't be an adventure game without its puzzles. Just like the story, Broken Sword delivers with its puzzles. They are often laid out in a logical fashion, but won't pose too much of a problem for the average adventurer. The difficulty is just right. You might be stuck for a long time in a certain scene, and just when you're about to get frustrated, you suddenly notice that one clue that you missed, and immediatley solve the puzzle and move on. Then, you might get stuck again, but once more before getting frustrated, the puzzle is solved. One puzzle I sincerely enjoyed was the mystery that a certain manuscript contains. I studied it whenever I could, and it's just so fulfilling to travel to a different location and suddenly recognize something from the manuscript that will help you solve the problem.

The Bad
Unfortunatley, Broken Sword has one thing that has plaqued many a game before : Bugs. There is a bug that will leave the player stuck in a situation from where he can't continue. If you have saved past this point, you'll have to completely restart the game... Apparently, if you travel to Spain before visiting Syria, you will encounter this bug. Luckily, I had been warned of this bug beforehand and didn't walk into the death-trap myself. This happens pretty far in the game and it could be annoying to start all over. Also, on a few rare occasions, George managed to get stuck in a location, and he couldn't move at all... saving often is recommended.

I've heard from several reviews that Broken Sword is pretty hilarious on the PC and PS version. Although several sarcastic comments from George made me smile from time to time, I didn't find anything that truly made me laugh out loud(a feat not too hard to accomplish). Mayhaps most of the jokes were cut from the GBA version, or the delivery of the voice actors manage to bring out a joke, but I didn't find anything outstanding..

Also, the game is somewhat short... I managed to complete the game in about three days. Of course, I also played this game as often as I could.

The Bottom Line
In the end, playing Broken Sword feels like reading a good book. The mystery manages to keep itself mysterious throughout the story, every character manage to possess a characteristic of its own, and plot twists often come at the right moment. Once you've finished the game, you might put it away, but you'll dig it up pretty soon to go through it again to see which plot points you missed, or just to be completely entertained by its enthralling story.

Game Boy Advance · by Ruben van der Leun (13) · 2002

one fine adventure game... and it's not from lucasarts !

The Good
There is something to enjoy in almost every aspect of "broken sword". Graphics first... they're just amazing for the time, and still very find by today's standarts. Professionally animated characters evolve on beautifully drawn backgrounds. Sounds... Well, the game featured full voice acting. And incredibly long dialogs, so it's pretty amazing they managed to put all this digitized speech on just two CDs. Music is also nice, though there are not so many moments when it can be heard. Gameplay... The puzzles were of a fine level of difficulty. Nothing dreadfully illogical. Of course, it has a couple of challenging moments, but I think reasonably patient folks will not have to get the help of a walkthrough more than once or twice. And this will probably be during the few puzzles that require timing. Story... the story is involving and draws you back to the game. Lasting appeal... Well, once you've solved the game, you'll probably not come back, but the whole experience is decently long, so it's pretty good value for money.

The Bad
The graphics when you are in Paris are magnificent... but sometimes, when you're in other countries, they're slightly inferior (especially in Ireland) The voice acting is sometimes a little questionnable. The story is sometimes hard to understand, especially towards the end... it's not always easy to relate the clues you find to the conclusion your character is drawing.

The Bottom Line
This adventure game must not be ashamed when it is compared to Lucasarts masterpieces : they're on the same glorious level ! While the humour is far from being as wacky as, say, "monkey island", it's still very funny, because your character can't stop using light irony (at least light enough so it doesn't get irritating). Solving the mystery of the temple knights is really a thrilling adventure I recommend to everyone.

Windows · by Xa4 (300) · 2003

One of the last true adventures of the 90s

The Good
When i played the Broken Sword demo (Circle of Blood in america) i felt that this game had something in special... Some time passed and i made of my own a copy of that game, joining George Stobbart in his adventures was a great pleasure, really great animations with an adult-cartoon feel, great atmospheric music and tons of ironic humor by our 'american hero' Stobbart. We will travel to a lot of locations (something i always liked in a game) and meet some charismatic characters, some of them will help you and some of them are just waiting for the moment to bring you down, very neat in overall.

The Bad
I really felt annoyed by the bloody disc swapping system, when you had to travel from a location to another one that 'insert disc' screen showed up, maybe having divided the game in two parts (CD1 and CD2) would have been more comfortable. There is a little inconvenient i found, maybe there is too much content in the dialogues and that can become boring in some situations.

The Bottom Line
If you like games like Gabriel Knight or other mystery/investigation games you should try Broken Sword, a masterpiece.

Windows · by Depth Lord (932) · 2004

Absolutely Wonderful!!!

The Good
This game sports one of the best stories I've ever encountered in a point and click adventure along with very nice graphics, better than average voice acting and a tremendously marvelous soundtrack!

The Puzzles range from very easy to quite hard but for the most part they are all logical!!! note to developers work more on logical and story and less on how badly you can frustrate someone with nonsensical puzzles, aka bury the fish by the palm tree in the desert to get the door to the temple open, I really should quit giving them ideas ;)

If you haven't played it then go out and buy it at any cost!!!! I've played this game three times since it's release and never get tired of the thrill it brings me!

The Bad
What's not to like?

The Bottom Line
An absolute wonderful romp around the world and a mystery that will draw you in so deep you'll be dreaming about it!

Windows · by Sylven (4) · 2002

A awsome game

The Good
The fact that is is one of the few adventure games that rivals the Lucasarts games, basically everything I said about in my review of the PC version, in short this game is great

The Bad
The Playstation version suffers from load times everytime you leave a scene, this can turn off some gamers, and because of the reduced resolution some objects can be hard to find.

The Bottom Line
One of the few brillaint graphic adventures on the Playstation

PlayStation · by Grant McLellan (584) · 2001

Learn about the Templars while searching for the café bomber

The Good
The Shadow of the Templars is the first game in Revolution's Broken Sword adventure series, and like Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers before it, it delves into some history besides concentrating on what usually happens in the introduction. The player takes on the role of George Stobbart, an American tourist on vacation in Paris, who barely survives an explosion outside a Paris café when the killer walks in, takes a dude's suitcase and replaces it with an explosive, then walks back out. Now George has to find out the identity of the killer and track him down. He discovers that there is something much larger and more dangerous going on that stretches back as far as the Knights Templar. As the game progresses, he finds out (with the help of a French journalist) that the suitcase contains a manuscript once belonging to the Knights Templar. This leads them to various locations such as Ireland, Syria, Spain, and Scotland; and soon, they want to get down to the nitty-gritty of it all.

More often than not, you will spend most of the game interviewing people for information that will lead you to the next clue. I enjoyed interviewing people because I wanted to know what would happen later if I get the right information out of them. The script is well-thought out, and I felt that it is enhanced if you play the game with subtitles, which is what I do because I sometimes do not follow dialogue unless it appears on screen.

The interface in Templars is a bit unusual. It looked to me as if the game is presented in widescreen, but what made me think otherwise is the top and bottom bits are reserved for the inventory and interview topics, respectively. I like the way when you move the mouse to these areas, you get a smooth transition effect. The interface will still be around in the future BS games.

The hand-painted backgrounds are nice. The artists did well in determining what is in each location and make us experience what it is in real-life. For example, Ireland has pubs almost around each corner, and if you actually go there, you will see this. The buildings that I enjoyed looking were mostly in Paris. When I went to Paris four years ago, I remembered the buildings were basically in pink, yellow, and white; which is what the buildings in Templars look like. The individual cut-scenes are nice, and they trigger whatever major event is going to take place. During the game, you have to use the phone, but unlike other adventure games, you can actually see the person that you are talking to.

The music in the game is created by the London Symphony Orchestra, and it reflects well with what happens and what you are doing. In my opinion, some of the music is heard when you are in Syria. I did not know the difference between Indian and Arabian music. I thought that they were similar in style until I played this game. Other notable music include the Irish music in Lochmarne.

I read most reviews of this game here on MobyGames where the writers say that the game can't make up its mind whether it wants to be a comedy or a serious adventure. To me, this game is not humorous. Apart from what one of the lieutenants on the case says at the beginning of the game, not one conversation after that made me laugh.

The puzzles in Templars are simple, they probably take just a few minutes to complete. An example is the chess puzzle somewhere in the middle of the game, in which you only have to move the white chess pieces in the middle of the board and not the red pieces that surround it. If you place them in the correct order, something will happen. That is the only puzzle that I saw in the game, that is worth mentioning here.

I was impressed by the installation program. It is not one of those boring old installation programs where the desktop is still shown (like InstallShield), but it is based around the same color as the in-game control panel, which has shades of brown. The program has a nice transition effect where the options appear scrolling from the left or right. While files are being copied to your hard drive, you can play a Breakout game until the installation has been completed. What sets this game apart from other Breakout games is the fact that there is no lives or score, and the blocks reset when the paddle does not connect with the ball. There is a female voice to guide you through the installation as well.

The Bad
I didn't like how, during the game, you are required to do a bit of CD swapping, even though you are asked to CD-swap during the installation.

The Bottom Line
Templars is a brilliant adventure game from the dudes who brought you Beneath a Steel Sky. The hand-painted backgrounds are nice, and each building in them is modeled on real-life ones. The music suits the situation that you are in, the puzzles are not too hard, and the game comes with a superb installation program. Game number one is suitable for the whole family as there is no violence, sex, or bad language here. My sister would love to get her hands on this.

Windows · by Katakis | カタキス (43086) · 2008

One word.....BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Good
Broken Sword is one of those games that can be compared to the games of Lucasarts. Sure Broken Sword shares many similarites with say, the Monkey Island games, but what makes it different is the control system. The game uses the same control method that was used in "Beneath A Steel Sky only better. The characters in the game are well animated, in fact they give Disney a run for their money!. The music is well used in the game, it is even composed by Barrington Pheloung (who did the music for the popular UK TV series "Inspecter Morse")

The Bad
Some of the puzzles are a bit hard and can take quite a while to figure out. Other than that there's really not much to say about what makes this game bad.

The Bottom Line
A Brilliant game that needs to be in any gamers collection, adventure game fans will enjoy this a lot.

Windows · by Grant McLellan (584) · 2001

A strangely ordinary adventure

The Good
After hearing for years about how good this game was meant to be, I finally tracked down and bought a copy. It was, perhaps, surprising that I hadn't played the game before, especially as Revolution's earlier game, Beneath A Steel Sky still ranked as one of my favourite adventures of all time, and before that, Lure Of The Temptress was also pretty good.

What had put me off playing Broken Sword was the globe-trotting plot (really not my kind of thing) and the graphics, which I really didn't like the look of.

Oh, anyway...I finally bought it and played it. And my opinion?

It's good. Nothing great or classic, but definitely good.

It just seemed to me very ordinary and uninspiring. It was also over rather too quickly. Your character, an average American tourist, wanders through scenic locales around the world, chatting with amiable locals and solving a few puzzles. I never found the game gripping or particularly exciting and I was never that intrigued by the plot. OK - It does have its moments - Some enjoyable spy tomfoolery at a hotel, early on in the game, and then, right near the end, it surprised me with a classic set-piece on a train, which (especially thanks to the music in that section) was actually quite tense and engaging. But most of the time, it merely held my interest, occasionally slipping over into 'dull'.

The main character's voice acting is nicely done, oddly reminding me at times of the whimsical, enthusiastic narration in cult British kids' TV show, Mr. Benn. Other characters vary - Some are very well done - Others are drearily irritating.

The interface works well.

Graphics are generally nice.

The music is fine - Nothing at all memorable, but it usually does its job well enough, and also sounds quite different from most other game scores. The one piece of music that really stood out, for me, was the bit used on the train.

I liked the way the phone conversations were done, and the development of the relationship between George and Nico was nicely done.

The Bad
There is nothing bad about this game, just as there is nothing remarkable about it.

Some of the characters' voices irritated me, and one actor in particular was used a bit too much, providing identical voices for about three different characters. Conversation did become tedious, at times.

I didn't find the game amusing. There were perhaps two or three moments when I chuckled.

The game is pretty short, and each country you visit only has a few locations to see - With the exception of Paris, which is your 'home base' - The result was that I felt the game had spread itself too thin. Paris felt quite homely and fleshed-out, but the rest of the world wasn't too interesting.

I didn't enjoy many of the puzzles. They were a mixed bag - Some too easy, others far too obscure. It was rare that I felt much satisfaction from successfully completing a puzzle.

The Bottom Line
This is a well-made, quality game. All the elements are there. But somehow, it's just not that interesting. None of its elements rise above 'good'. There's nothing that makes me go "Wow". But it confuses me...As soon as I'd finished it, I found myself installing Broken Sword II...Hmm...

Windows · by xroox (3895) · 2002

Neither fish nor fowl

The Good
Broken Sword is an example of what I like to call the "post-classical" period of adventure games. It was made after Sierra and LucasArts did everything they could with comedy, and the former also produced quite a few convincing experiments in a more "serious" genre.

Revolution - not exactly a rookie in the business, having authored the (in my opinion) more interesting Lure of the Temptress and Beneath a Steel Sky - tries to recreate the transparent atmosphere of the classical style. It might sound strange, but the one positive thing to say about Broken Sword is that there is nothing overly negative to say about it.

The game is solid, quite solid indeed. There are some nicely flowing dialogues and humorous remarks representing the dry British wit. There is more exploration and experimentation involved than in the less interesting sequel. The Paris part of the game, where it most resembles a detective story, is more successful than the later episodes - I enjoyed interrogating suspects and gathering evidence instead of blindly advancing the plot via contrived adventure game devices. Some of the puzzles feel right, being logical, neither too hard nor too easy. The graphics are technically good. In short, there is nothing wrong with this game...

The Bad
...just as there isn't anything really great in it. Typically of the "post-classical" period, energy and creativity are running low in Broken Sword. It looks back nostalgically almost in a way a fan tribute would. The entire genre was already in a crisis, and this game feels like a rather desperate attempt to ignore that. It contains many traditional adventure elements, but they don't mesh well because the designers were too focused on making everything "right" instead of having their own vision of what an adventure game should be like.

Not many games could tell serious stories right while spicing them with a bit of humor. Gabriel Knight series was one of the few that succeeded in that. Those games told deep stories and had dark, even macabre atmosphere; whenever they injected them with humor, they did it at the right time and in the right doses, so that it never interfered with the sinister atmosphere or disrupted the dramatic pace of the story. Broken Sword could not do the same. It's a bit of everything - silly "Monkey Island-lite" puzzles interspersed by murders, cozy dialogues with goofy people in quiet Irish villages against the backdrop of pseudo-historical conspiracies. This discrepancy in style was already evident in Revolution's earlier work, but here it becomes unnerving.

One big problem with the game is its dryness. Whether in the puzzles, dialogues, visuals, humor, or story, the tone is consistently distant - there is hardly any warmth. Gabriel Knight games combined all their historical and occult material with personal involvement. Their heroes suffered, had inner conflicts; they fought, loved and hated. The main characters of Broken Sword, on the other side, are indifferent. You never learn much about their personalities. You don't really care for them. And they also don't care that much for what's happening in the game.

Lukewarm puzzles have to be solved in order to advance a trite plot based on fake "discoveries" by some authors during the last couple of decades of the century. Since that, people started fixating, among other things, on Knights Templar, as if their alleged conspiracies could help us solve the real problems we face in the world. Thus, Broken Sword is quite distant from its modern-day setting, being more of a big cliche peppered by stereotypical exotics. This nonchalance is perfectly illustrated by the visuals: they are too bright, too neat, too sterile to convey the much-needed atmosphere.

The Bottom Line
Broken Sword was made according to the right standards, but the input of its own personality is minimal. It resembles a hard-working, but not particularly inspired student who did his best to imitate a great master. The result is a rather tepid game, neither bad nor exciting - classical, but not a classic.

Windows · by Unicorn Lynx (181748) · 2014

Jones!? You've got some nerve...

The Good
| Where's My Hat & Whip? |
Well, this isn't Indiana Jones game, but close enough. You've been assigned a role of George Stobbart, an american in Paris. Holiday, vacation, job, he doesn't give them much of a distinction, but when a bomb blew out the café bar he was spending a pleasant evening in (it was actually noon or morning, but sounds better for the review), he took that a bit personal. And ever since, he's bound to find the trouble. So, what would a normal fellow do? Perhaps thanking God he's still alive. But not our George, he picked up his remains and set off after the phantom (again, it was clown, but sounds more interesting this way, vbg). Due to game's further progress, you'll visit locales all around the world and will see how one may confuse George for Indy... he's restless, he'c charming, and he's always where the trouble is. Only he doesn't seem to be interested in the relics, though.

| Upper Cup of His Personality |
Well, I remember playing this game first as it got out. I had some semi-version of it without voice-acting (that was actually a good thing in this case scenario, but we'll come to that later), and after playing the game for some time I officially decided I don't like it not one bit. And the whole clown charade was waaaay out of my point of interest (can't really see what people see in circuses, I can't stand them, unless perhaps Guybrush is performing his cannonball act). However, as I got this game years later, it all started to change slowly, and I realised that George has one helluva personality... and we had some great things in common. For starters, we both really don't like clowns and mimes ;)) Well, as I started to like him, playing started to grow easier and by now it's one of the finest adventure game franchise I've came across (not the finest, but great nonetheless, at least this original is).

| Adventure Away! |
Good riddance smaller companies didn't all gave up on the adventure genre when LucasArts withdraw in his corner. By the time this game came out, I gotta admit that adventure games were scarce (or maybe I got so much used to see LucasArts adventures every year out that I felt like some link was missing) and as hardware became more powerful and soon after 3d graphic accelerator cards came out, the more real-time action was able to infiltrate our games. Still, somewhere behind, companies kept developing adventures, and this one was using it in style, using high color SVGA graphic (hm, actually, it's 8-bit color, but it looks much better) yet remaining on fully hand-drawn art, in a 2d point-and-click style using 3rd person perspective (my favorite genre even now). The graphic art is really beautiful (mark the word beautiful, I'm not referring to technical marvel, but something that is really sightfully pleasing) and everything, from background to sprite animation was great. Of course, it was nothing new, we got used to such quality with LucasArts, but they were no longer leading the genre so we had to look elsewhere for the results. Particularly neat touch are cartoonish animations every now and then (short but sweet), so it kinda adds a feeling like you're in some well done cartoon, and Scooby will pop-out anytime now.

The Bad
| And Revolution Software Created Woman |
Well, as much as this sounds great in theory, on the screen it was a big cast aside. Nico (probably Nicollete, lol), the reporter, the most annoying creature in the game. Yes, she is good looking, and yes it's nice to have a sidekick or someone to call at your side, but the voice-acting they used for her ruined 99% of this game. I don't mind the french accent, but... well, something's really weird about it to say the least. LucasArts never ever used bad voice-acting in any of their games, and they used several different accents to emphasize certain characters. It's not the quality of sound in this game, it's the voice itself. It's like she's mocking at you all the time, and with that bad attitude, I really wonder why George put up with her for so long. I mean, she's a reporter for Pete's sake, can it get any worse than that?

The Bottom Line
| The Sum of All Fears |
Nothing to fear from this game as long as you can turn your head the other way whenever Nico's doing all the talking. Aside from that, this game is a real adventure in a true sense of that word. You won't be fighting your way out like Indy does most of the times, but you'll be handshaking to Mr. Death on a regular basis. The story gets interesting, but in the end, it's not the final revelation that counts here, it's the journey itself. You get to visit many different places, meet interesting characters (and animals), and start to appreciate the effort put in this game altogether. And if interested enough, even better, the trilogy's out there as we speak.

Windows · by MAT (241154) · 2012

Shadow of the Templars is best described as a "diet coke" of the Adventure genre, only with much better aftertaste.

The Good
Broken Sword: Shadow of the Templars (BS:SotT) is your standard graphic adventure game in which you play the role of George Stobbart, a young American tourist on vacation through Europe that gets caught up in a rather nasty murder investigation in Paris and a eight century old mystery that'll span over Europe. I found the story to be interesting, well written (with a couple of nice plot twists) and slightly educational to boot.

Like I said, throughout your adventure you'll get to visit several other countries besides France, although your visit to them won't be as in depth as Paris, but then again when you look at games that have world travel (Like Gabriel Knight) you'll find that they don't expand beyond the necessary much either. The spotlight is on Paris, it is the center of the game, and most of the adventure will take place there. I mean, sure it would have been nice to see Spain in depth, but would it have really added anything to the story? If anything I think people would consider it a tactic to lengthen the game.

Gameplay in BS:SotT is the typical point-and-click-inventory-based-hot-spot-seeking-puzzle-extravaganza that you can expect to find in an adventure game (not that I'm complaining).

The interface couldn't be simpler or easier to use. Moving your mouse over hot spots will reveal a possible action that will be carried out by pressing the left hand button, while using the right hand one will give you brief description of whatever it is you're looking at. That said there are some pixel hunting moments that will frustrate you. If it's of any consolation, I didn’t find it terrible enough to damper my enjoyment of the game. You'll just have to exercise a little patience and move the mouse slowly.

The puzzle difficulty seems just about right to me. Shortly after a few hours of playing I recall saying to myself that the puzzles were WAY too easy, that however changed later on, for as you progress in the game the puzzles will become more difficult. Unfortunately in some cases the difficulty was in the obscurity of the puzzles, and you might be forced to track down a walkthrough, but there are still plenty of good logical puzzles to solve.

The game was released in 96, when computer game graphics where passing their FMV/SVGA graphics craze/phase and look a tad more than cartoonish, yet this isn't anything new as other adventure titles of the year use this style as well (Discworld 2, Fable, Gene Machine...). I know these graphics don't appeal much too some people, but regardless of Graphical preference I think they are well done and fit well with the overall ambiance of the game (which wasn't nearly as dark and gloomy as I had originally expected it to be).

In the sound department I have absolutely no complaints, the voice acting was surprisingly good, and sound was... well, sound... let me put it this way, you won't be clutching your ears in pain or turning it off. It was good, not sure what else to say about it. Music, finally, was in my opinion the better done of the three; it added that extra bit of dramatic feel at some crucial moments and some nice light listening when wandering about.

The Bad
I was a little disappointed that we didn't get to visit Germany, Italy or Greece (though they were marked on the map). But, to tell you the truth if asked how to implement them I wouldn't know where to begin (and I don’t even know if those nations had anything to do with the Templars).

The only thing that really bothered me about BS:SotT is that it can't quite make up its mind weather it wants to be a serious murder/mystery or a lighthearted comedy/parody, so it tries to be both without really succeeding in either. I think if the game had been done in a solely serious manner, it would have been much more popular than it is already.

Ok, I lied, that wasn’t the only thing that really bothered me, there's one more. I'm not really sure what George's motivation to find the killer is. Let me clarify: George's taking a trip through Europe on his vacation, he decides to have a cup of coffee at a little coffee shop in Paris when it is suddenly blow up by a clown, claiming the life of one guy he knew absolutely nothing about. He COULD have gone on with his vacation through Europe, yet he decided to track the killer down instead. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I'm reassessing my desire to visit Europe.

The Bottom Line
BS:SotT is an interesting and enjoying game that I would recommend to any fan of the genre, unfortunately, I think it tried to be/do way too many things at once to make a durable lasting impression.

Basically, if you're looking for a comedy game, get Discworld Noir. If you want a serious murder/mystery, get Gabriel Knight. If you want a little of both, get Broken Sword.

Windows · by Gonchi (3590) · 2009

The great game that might have been.

The Good
Voice actors do a good job with variety of accents, and the rest of the sound and music is also well done. The "An American Tale"-style graphic animation is a delightful respite from the legions of Myst-alikes that shared shelf space with this one when released. Although not up to Sierra/LucasArts standards, the plot and script are entertaining enough that you'll probably want to play this through to the end.

Looking back at it from the post-Da Vinci Code era, the first installment in this adventure series seems especially prescient. The whole Templers conspiracy plot, along with the quasi-romantic link between an American man and a French female, lays the template for the Code phenomenon—so much so that a part of me strongly suspects Dan Brown of plagiarizing this game!

The Bad
There is WAY too much pixel-hunting -- you might know what to do but still fail to do it because you have to put your mouse pointer in just the right (extremely small) place.

Some puzzles are not very logical. It's also possible to visit a location and get "stuck" there due to some of the disc-swapping that occurs when you travel abroad.

Finally, some attempts at humor fall flat on an American audience, and some actually render the game inappropriate for a young person. Sexual innuendo and anti-religious sentiments reflect this game's European origins.

The Bottom Line
A pleasant diversion that coulda-shoulda-woulda been a classic.

Windows · by PCGamer77 (3158) · 2007

I didnt want the story to end. Its like Indiana Jones in cartoon.

The Good
I thought the graphics were REALLY well done. Its all cartoon animated , no pixelated images at all.

The story really got me in. Its not a serious game , but the plot is interesting all the same.

The controls were fairly easy , you really have no trouble with them at all.

The game mixes humour in just enough to make it uplifting , but not too much as to wreck the serious aspects of the game. (Im not sure if you know what i mean by that)

The game is a long and challenging one, you travel all around europe in your searches.In fact , one of the longest (and most enjoyable) i have played.

The Bad
The LAME ending. It spoiled it totally.

The cd changing was slightly annoying.

Thats about it.

The Bottom Line
You dont want to see it end.

Windows · by Shayne Bates (12) · 2001

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Alsy, Scaryfun, ryanbus84, Wizo, Víctor Martínez, Big John WV, deepcut, Jeanne, Abi79, Dae, Karsa Orlong, COBRA-COBRETTI, Patrick Bregger, Spenot, Apogee IV, mikewwm8, Emmanuel de Chezelles, Tim Janssen, Cantillon, Riemann80, Havoc Crow, Hipolito Pichardo, CalaisianMindthief, yellowshirt, lights out party, RhYnoECfnW, Alaka, Mr Creosote, Parf.