Version Reviewed: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
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The latest installment in the Blackwell series, Blackwell 4: Deception has been a long time coming - but it was worth the wait. A more substantial experience than before, you can play it as a standalone piece but you’ll glean the most benefit from it if you’ve played the series before.
While the whole series has offered a continuing storyline alongside individual tales, it all comes together within Blackwell 4: Deception, providing a much more involved experience. This isn’t the last Blackwell game with Epiphany coming soon, but it does do a great job of piecing everything together.
As before, you spend some of your time controlling detective Rosa and the rest of the time controlling ghostly, Joey. A lot of the puzzles rely on you figuring out when to switch between them, such as an early conundrum having you persuade another ghost to help you out.
Besides the usual bevy of inventory related puzzles, you also get the chance to piece together clues through analyzing evidence, conducting internet searches, and consulting your notebook. Blackwell 4: Deception is a little more modern in its approach than earlier instalments, offering a smartphone to do all this. Curiously, it looks out of place given the game’s retro appearance, but it’s certainly convenient.
Throughout the game’s six or so hours, it keeps you enticed. The series has done a respectable job of keeping things ticking along at an appealing pace and Deception is no different. You spend a lot of your time helping people suffering and it’s so much more satisfying than simply solving a conventional mystery.
It ensures that Blackwell 4: Deception feels more distinctive and soulful than most adventure games. Most importantly, it leaves you keen to see just what Epiphany will bring in the future. Things are building to a great crescendo.