Emerald City Confidential is the latest adventure game from Wadjet Eye Games, the makers of the Blackwell series. This game is a gumshoe story... in Oz!
The gumshoe in this story is Petra, a female detective in a noir Oz who gets hired by Dee, who you find out pretty quick is actually Dorothy Gale from the stories. She hires you to find a man, who she claims is her fiancé.
In your travels you'll meet many characters from the original stories, some... have changed... a lot!
As the mystery unravels I find myself thinking that this feels right, like an actual detective story... that just happens to be in Oz!
Since it's a small indie game the moment I found my man, I assumed it would be over... Boy was I wrong! The story kept going and going! But... it was no longer a detective story... which is kinda sad, but only a bit...
It's actually longer that some of the classic adventure games! Is it long enough for 20$? YES! Most of the 8$ adventure "mini-spodes" end in about an hour and a half, this will take 4-6 hours depending whether you speed through it or savor it properly.
One of the thing that irked me is that the characters had emotionless faces, they seemed to have the same expression whether they where happy or sad... Many adventure games neglect facial animation... But it still bothers me when they do it...
The other thing that irked me about the game is... some plot holes.... You meet some of Dorothy's friends in your travels, some have changed... you figure out why for all but one of the character... the character that has changed the most!
Also in the middle of the game you are given a new objective... You are supposed to do a certain thing four times with a certain item in certain places, but you actually use it only twice... What happens after this should only be possible if you actually did this four times, yet... you didn't...
Did they cut the rest out? Was this a misunderstanding between the writers and the programers? You wouldn't even notice this if they didn't mention this to you... It's noticeable, a bit confusing, but it didn't detract
The game comes with a good hint system, with gradual hints that will give you some pointers before actually telling you want to do. Not that the game is really that hard since you can't die or screw up.
Would I recommend it? Definitely, the story kept me going up until the end! Which to me, is the most important part of an adventure game to me, even more than the puzzle solving.