You have just arrived back to your home in Sydney. On your return to your house, you find that your Uncle Fred has left a message. He urgently wants you to go to his house and from there you will be plunged into the mystery. Someone has been setting off bombs in the city, the question is who and why?
The Sydney Mystery is a point-and-click adventure game that features photographs of various Sydney locations and full motion videos of people you'll need to talk to in order to solve the problem. These aren't professionals, it does show, but they do fairly well.
The game interface is pretty simple. This is reflected in the fact that there is no manual at all for the game, just some instructions after the introduction. There is a large arrow for finding your way around the city. This cursor will change whenever there is something you can interact with or showing which directions you may move in. The tricky part for this game is a) noticing when there is something in the scene you can pick up and b) checking for alternative ways into and out of a particular scene.
Using items in your inventory is a simple right click. You will need to keep right clicking until the inventory item you need is available though. You cannot combine items in your inventory. But there is at least one instance where you must combine items, perhaps one of them is more useful in situ?
You have the opportunity to talk to a number of people around town. You'll want to go through all the conversation options (they don't tend to notice you repeating questions) and there are times when you want to show someone an item.
The name of the narrator is apparently Niece...or maybe Niece Of Fred. Somewhat unrealistic that the narrator never introduces herself by her own name to people she is just meeting.
When leaving a scene, you see exactly the same shots as you did entering the scene. This gives me the feeling of walking backwards. Which is slightly unpleasant for a city street.
The map is a bit confusing. Sometimes the location appears separately on the map. Other times, it will be a specific thing within one of the locations.
A very commendable effort for a game developed by one person. Game play is rather short, but the photography around Sydney is great, the videos interviews make this feel more interactive just because there are people around. Suitable for gamers of all ages, only a glimpse of violence, no bad language at all. Good introduction to the genre for any new adventurer. However if what you are looking for a fully professional and polished game, this isn't quite what you need. It is a low budget, one developer game and there are a few places it shows (including a mic in a late part of the game.)
You'll need to travel to Official Web site to order your copy.
Don't go looking for hints or a walkthrough. The game is short, there aren't many stumbling blocks.
Almost unique in my experience. An adventure game where every single item you can pick up is useful.
Careful reading of the Sydney Mystery site reveals that several of the people have been recorded for a second game called the Millenium Adventure. The creator of Sydney Mystery, Brendan Reville, says that the game is currently in limbo, so we must assume that success or failure of Sydney Mystery will determine the fate of the other game.