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Jake Hunter: Memories of the Past on Nintendo DS

The cult-classic game: Jake Hunter: Memories of the Past was the made as the closest thing to a patch for the infamous Jake Hunter Chronicles (so keep in mind, that game lacks content that I might praise it’s Memories of the Past for adding), which was the only other american localization for a Tantei Jing?ji Sabur? game (of which, contrary to the game’s status to america, is actually one of the most popular adventure series games in japan). But of course, the number of trivia facts that surrounds a video game says nothing of its overall quality so it’s best to get straight to the point at this point: which is that the game is very good even though it contains a few flaws. I mean, the game’s visual quality is not too impressive with a lack of individual character animations and it’s visual novel-point and click adventure game hybrid nature has led some of what would’ve been the more interactive bits of ace attorney end up being replaced somewhat tedious and complicated usage of an awkward set of mechanics that include a lot of abstract button pressing, however the game does implement redeeming factors to the gameplay, even giving the player the actual chance to get into fighting sequences (which really stood out to me, despite having a simple rock paper scissors formula where the player has the advantage of knowing how to react to the enemy’s attacks ahead of time with the exceptions of the first few bouts where the player has to go through a sequence of trial and error, but it’s still pretty interesting for a detective visual novel). However, while the case “As Time Goes By” does have a “reveal” mechanic, I wish that there were more mechanics based on having the player make deductions, but despite the game’s ability to execute mechanics with a consistently high fun factor (even though there are a couple superhard and comedy-driven mini-cases with somewhat different mechanics that may be more fun but it was just too cheery for me to handle, however, I never played a visual novel where the main supporting character/NPC kills you when you mess up), don’t let this steer you away from the game’s narrative, it’s gripping enough to get very hooked but I can’t help but feel that some cases took content that originally came from previous cases but I think that’s just me overreacting to similarities in the cases (and besides, most detective stories revolve around a murder, so when a story steers away from the subject of unforgivable crime while still retaining some kind of mature-ish edge to the story, like how Hotel Dusk sorta does, then it just did something ground breaking, but that was a topic for a different review that, in case you’re wondering, I already made). The games also have a nice cast of recurring characters and otherwise main characters as well, even if a few of the more throw-away-ish characters are a bit on the lackluster side. So in short, whether you want a good detective story with a faint but present hint of neo-noir or a darker version of ace attorney (not that is actually is a darker ace attorney, but it's ju-ust close enough), then this game is probably for you. But if you’re definition of a good game is limited only to gameplay, sorry.






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