Welcome to GGG, where we talk casual games, books, movies, recipes, indie games, and MORE!


    Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby

    Share
    avatar
    genkicoll

    Posts : 7883
    Join date : 2011-12-29
    Age : 45
    Location : Pacific Northwest

    Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby

    Post by genkicoll on Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:57 am

    Ashley Clark: Secret of the Ruby
    by N-Tri Studios - August, 2013

    Series links: Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby, Ashley Clark 2: The Secrets of the Ancient Temple

    Available at:
    Alawar
    Big Fish
    GameHouse
    iWin
    Steam



    Detective Ashley Clark is puzzled by a series of mysterious kidnappings. The only connection between these unusual disappearances is a brilliant, red ruby pendant. Could someone be using this sparkling ornament to send a clandestine message, or could this be the handiwork of an underground cult? Follow the clues to discover the ancient secrets held by the ruby pendant, and uncover the truth behind the bizarre kidnappings!

    • Highly interactive storyline and gameplay
    • Exciting mini-games
    • Intriguing plot with twists and turns
    • Wide range of difficulty levels

    Click images to enlarge
    __


    Last edited by genkicoll on Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:38 pm; edited 4 times in total


    _________________
    Never be a prisoner of your past.
    It was just a lesson, not a life sentence.

    avatar
    JustTheFacts

    Posts : 5136
    Join date : 2013-09-01
    Age : 56
    Location : Western Australia

    Re: Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby

    Post by JustTheFacts on Fri Sep 06, 2013 5:56 am

    Perfect Punchcard Monday Game!

    Sunny Sunny Sunny Sunny 

    BASED ON DEMO

    I am so often disappointed by stand alone SE games, that I am very happy to find a good one. This is not the flashiest game you’ll ever see – the budget is clearly too low for that – but it’s got all the essentials, and they’re done well.

    The opening cut scenes are very like 3D adventure games, and the game world is done in old fashioned pseudo-realism, but don’t let that fool you, there is more to this game than there seems at first glance.

    WHAT’S HAPPENING
    Initially, we have a typical cop/crime mystery game with the expected visuals to go with it, based in the real world and fairly ordinary. We have been called out to the crime scene of a probable kidnapping, with strange complications. We find out that there have been a series of similar crimes dating back to 1790!

    With the guidance of stranded spirits, we track down our kidnapper, who doesn't seem all that formidable, but, hey *somebody* dragged me into this time zone/dimension - whatever.

    SIGHTS & SOUNDS
    Then we take a good look at the ruby amulet found at the scene, and are thrown into a completely different world. Personally I thought we took that pretty casually, for a street smart cop and all.Once we leave behind our present day reality, the graphics become mostly water colour hand drawn in style. Good colour and clarity. The cut scenes still hark back to earlier time, but the HO scenes in particular look great. No matter which style of graphics is being used at any moment, it is all well done.

    The voiceovers, when there are some (characters will go from VO to print when the dialogue is long), are very good, even though sometimes the pronunciation is off. We can interact and talk with the characters we meet, and that plus the cut scene graphics give the game the feel of an adventure game, so expect a little more talk than usual.

    MAKING PROGRESS
    The gameplay is well balanced between HO games (interactive list & silhouettes) and puzzles. The puzzles were almost all new for me, and a couple were a little confusing, so a bit more difficult than the norm. The adventure gameplay was pretty logical, and plenty of guidance from characters meant, not overly difficult. There is a directional hint and skip is quick in the easiest of 3 levels. The map was a transporter, but not interactive.

    We collect rubies for additional hints.

    FAMOUS LAST WORDS
    I ran out of time because I was too engrossed in the story to pay attention, always a good sign. This one is definitely on my buy list.



    I recommend this game!
    avatar
    genkicoll

    Posts : 7883
    Join date : 2011-12-29
    Age : 45
    Location : Pacific Northwest

    Re: Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby

    Post by genkicoll on Thu Jul 05, 2018 1:47 am

    Ashley Clark: Secret of the Ruby (IHOG)

    Options include separate sliders for Music and Sound, Full-screen, Wide Screen and Maintain Aspect Ratio (default).  The game actually looks pretty darned good stretched to Wide Screen, so I recommend unchecking the Aspect Ratio button to see how you like it ;)

    There are four difficulties to choose from, ranging from Easy to Nightmare.  I went with Normal mode, so this review will be based upon those settings.

    HIDDEN OBJECTS:

    The HO scenes are varied, going back and forth between word list and silhouette, and are lightly interactive.  Scenes will repeat once, and actions you've taken on those scenes previously will carry over to the next time you end up there.

    There is a rapid-misclick penalty, and you can tell when you're getting close to the penalty by looking at the rose at the top of the to-find list.  When it fills up with color completely, you'll temporarily be unable to click on anything.

    ADVENTURE:

    There is quite a bit of to-ing and fro-ing in the game, but we do have an insta-travel map to help us out.  There is some adventure-esque gameplay with items to find in our environment - especially later in the game.

    Something I actually really loved was that we couldn't pick up items until we actually NEEDED them.  In most other games I find this approach to be frustrating, but in THIS game, it not only made sense, but made me enjoy the game even more!  After all, why in the world would we carry eggs around in our pocket?

    HINTS:

    Hints are refillable, but the collectible rubies you can find - one at each location - serve as an insta-hint (no need to wait for the hint to charge.)  These are stackable, so if you don't use hints, you'll have quite a few by the time you finish the game!  Directional hints will not discharge your hint meter.

    STORY, SIGHTS & SOUNDS:

    Long story segments are only partially-voiced, but this only happens a couple of times in the game. Cutscenes are skippable.  The story itself could have been quite gripping if it had been handled a little differently, but even as-is, I still enjoyed it! 

    The voiceovers are average, and the sound effects and music are well-placed and non-invasive.

    Graphically the game isn't stunning, but it does have some quite lovely scenes.
     
    EXTRAS:

    Besides the aforementioned collectible rubies, there are 32 Steam Achievements.  Unlike most IHOG's, you won't find any for not using hints or for playing on the hardest difficulty... Instead, most of these achievements are gained via game progression and by solving puzzles.  Speaking of which...

    There are 23 Replayable puzzles in the Bonus section (top right of the menu screen.)  I don't know if solving the puzzles without skipping whilst in the Bonus section will net you an achievement, as I got all of my 'cheevos during regular gameplay.

    FINAL VERDICT:

    The HO scenes are nicely varied, the puzzles not your usual fare (some were quite difficult!), the story interesting, and overall gamplay quite enjoyable!  This is a long game - especially for a non-CE - meaning that it's a good value for the money.  Definitely a game that I will recommend to my HOG-loving friends!


    _________________
    Never be a prisoner of your past.
    It was just a lesson, not a life sentence.


    Sponsored content

    Re: Ashley Clark 1: Secret of the Ruby

    Post by Sponsored content


      Current date/time is Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:53 pm