Hunt the world’s deadliest criminals in Interpol: The Trail of Dr. Chaos (yep, that’s the title) which is a new arcade game on Xbox Live for 800 points. The game is basically a collection of eye spy puzzles, which is a very different change of pace from the action packed testosterone pumping assortment of games the 360 usually plays host to.
Surprisingly I actually found this drastic change kind of relaxing and refreshing. Also, any game that can convince my mom to come play a video game with me for three hours and not be on the Wii gets some credit in my book. Interpol is not a game I would recommend to any gamer looking for the next big thing to play for a long time, but as a nice little distraction for a few hours it holds up pretty well.
The “story” is laughably bad (who knew I could catch the world’s most wanted criminals by finding 8 crowns in a picture) and it’s just there as a method to move from puzzle to puzzle. The story has you chasing Dr. Chaos and his gang of henchmen all over the globe looking for clues to stop his reign of terror. The locations you visit offer nice scene changes in the pictures you stare at. You visit such exotic locales such as Paris, Beijing, Moscow, and Barcelona. There are three areas to search at each location which fleshes out to a respectable 33 puzzles (plus a couple bonus puzzles).
Gameplay consists of picking a location, loading a picture, and then looking for certain items in the picture. It sounds very simplistic and it is. You highlight the objects with the left thumbstick and press the A button to “find” them. If you miss then you hear the miss noise, if you find it the object flashes, disappears, and then gets crossed off your list. There are at least eight items to find in each level with some levels having more. They supply you with a magnifying glass to zoom in and see the smaller objects you have to find.
If there is an object that you can’t find no matter how much you search, the game supplies a very generous hint system, generous being they show you right where it is. You have 4 of these giveaways per location with the ability to find more in the pictures. I actually liked the hints because it kept the game from getting frustrating and allowing you to progress at a nice pace. You are also forced to pay attention to a very lenient timer on the puzzles (30 minutes per location), which is just a very thin way of adding tension.
Overall, Interpol is a very bland game that might have some appeal for puzzle fans but ultimately is not worth most gamers’ time. A price reduction would go a long way to making this game worthwhile, but the only way I can suggest a verification of the $10 price point would be if you have family or friends to play with.
Still images during gameplay and text for "story" progression just don't cut it.
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For what it's trying to do the gameplay is solid.
Mediocre music and ambient background noise are all this game offers.
The puzzles pick different objects every time you go back so there is some incentive to jump back in.
Nice change of pace, decent game, terrible price point.