Reviewed: December 14, 2005
Released: October 27, 2005
Agatha Christie: And Then There Were None is an adventure game based on Agatha Christie's best selling murder mystery novel of the same name, and what The Adventure Company hopes to be an ongoing adventure franchise. Borrowing on the established third-person adventure game genre and combining the works of Agatha Christie should be a no-brainer, but can the game deliver the same suspense as the novel?
You play Patrick Narracott trying to solve the mystery behind the deaths of several people on Shipwreck Island who were guests of a mysterious Mr. Owen. You must follow your intuition and investigate the deaths of your fellow guests that have been stranded on the island with you. The game introduces new twists and turns to the story so even fans of the book will be in for something new.
And Then There Were None is a mystery adventure with you as one of the unwitting and last minute additions to the mystery based on the Agatha Christie novel. You are supposed to deliver a group of guests to an island getaway off the English coast for a mysterious new owner of the island. After delivering your passengers you find your boat sabotaged and are stuck on the island to begin your adventure. You use questioning of the other characters, objects and clues to try to understand what is happening to your fellow stranded guests.
The game plays in the third person view with you moving your character Patrick Narracott with your cursor and mouse. You can carry objects in a haversack and use the inventory menu to look closely at objects and combine some of them to use for certain tasks during the game. Using objects is accomplished by opening the inventory, selecting the item, and then placing that item in the game. If the item can be used while holding it over a portion of the screen the pointer icon will turn into a gear and you left click to use the object. There is also a notebook that automatically takes notes of letters and clues for you to refer to during the game.
And Then There Were None has you roaming around asking questions of the other characters and finding objects to use for tasks. Accomplishing the tasks to start the next chapter is the most you do in the first eight chapters of the game. During the murder mystery you do not have much choice but to let the first several murders occur. You have no chance up until the very end to do much of anything other than the key objectives and some side tasks not key to starting the next chapter.
The entire play of the game does not really depend much on your investigative prowess as much as just roaming around asking questions and finding stuff. At the end of the game you must make some decisions on what course of action to pursue and this will decide who survives. You do not solve the murders but are told by the mastermind of the whole scheme why they did it and how.
And Then There Were None has some pretty low recommended and required system specifications but it still does not do very well with the visuals. There is not much in the game other than you wandering around in an old mansion or the grounds around it. They did not add very much in the way of graphics that stand out in any way.
In the game more than half the time it is storming and on my system the game had some very bad glitching because of rain. Looking out windows and when your outside there would be lines or blocks of semi-transparent blue that would be all streaked during the rain. The overall look and feel of the older mansion of some English island was done well enough but there was nothing spectacular to note.
The characters were made well enough but facial expressions were bland. At times they would have jerky movement or were just standing around waiting for you to do your thing. In this type of game where most of the story and the game is in the interaction of the characters you would think they would try to make this a better part of the game.
The sound was pretty decent in And Then There Were None. Rain and stormy winds pelted against the mansion and doors and floorboards creaked impressively as you cat footed around finding clues in the middle of the night. The actors did a good job conveying different emotions into their characters voices during the questioning and other speaking parts. The animals made realistic sounding noises when you did get to venture out in the sparse good weather during your horrible stay on Shipwreck Island.
Once you play through And Then There Were None to the last two chapters the game plays through the same except for small side tasks that can be done differently. The same characters die in the same order during the same chapter no matter how many times you go through. The only difference playing the game from the start would be the last two chapters and that depends on who you want to save. You can save the game at any time on an in game menu and load or start a new game from the main menu.
When you get to chapter nine you can save the game and then play it one of several ways depending on your actions. But this will only last about a half hour of play to go through all the ways to save or not save the last of the guests and yourself. The game took me about nine hours to play through with most of that in questioning all the players in almost every chapter and plenty of cut scenes.
Once your done with it I really see no point in visiting it again. You do get a bonus long cut scene after you accomplish a simple task after you have “solved” the mystery but it is only a narrative of the original ending of the Agatha Christie novel.
Agatha Christie is the author of the third most sold works in literature behind William Shakespeare and the bible. And Then There Were None, the PC game based on her best-selling novel does not meet the same high caliber as her works. This game could have been better with the graphics and game play concerning the characters especially considering that interaction of the characters is the major part of the game.
I found the game quite disappointing when I could not solve the mystery but rather hear the murderer tell the tale at the end about why they did it and some of how. I was hoping you could maybe guess at who did it and stop further murders or something along a different line. The only action that amounts to anything is at the very end of the game that finds you stopping the last couple of murders by whatever action you decide on. Your actions only dictate who at the end is saved or not, not much of a mystery solved though.