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Question #66152 posted on 01/16/2012 11:58 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Have any of you played Nancy Drew games? If yes, how recently and any thoughts?

-The Saddest Death on the Oregon Trail


Dear Cholera,

Yes I have played them, but it's been a few years. I played them primarily when I was approximately 9-13 years old, but I did bust one of them out my senior year of high school just to see if they were as scary as I remembered them being (they were).

And that is probably what I remember most: the games being out-of-my-mind scary. Of the 3 games I owned, I only ever beat one of the games. Not because of the puzzles, but because of how flippin' scary they were. I was introduced to these games and would play them with my friend, Vibrant, all the time. Together we could last a lot longer, but I'm pretty sure we both chickened out before the end of the game. Even the theme music for the main menu is scary! 

The scariest one that I ever played was Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake. I'm pretty sure I screamed several times.

Wouldn't you if this jumped up on the window you were staring out of a few moments ago?


Oh and did I mention he's got a nice little pack of creepy doggies and that you have to go wandering OUTSIDE!? It's terrifying I assure you. Especially since YOU CAN DIE! Yup, you heard it, death by zombie dog = complete possibility.  If I didn't know better, I would think these girls were actually me circa 2003.

Additionally, though I have not played it, I hear that Shadow at the Water's Edge is the scariest Nancy Drew game.  From this cut scene alone, I am inclined to believe that claim. 

Despite the scariness of the games I actually loved these games to death. In fact I kind of wish I knew where my old games were so I could play them again. 



Dear The Squirrel Shot for One Pound of Meat,

Yes, I have played Nancy Drew games. (Actually, all of them.) Yes, recently. (I finished Alibi in Ashes over Thanksgiving break.) I've played them since I was a bonnie wee lass. I fell in love with the first game we played, Message in a Haunted Mansion, partly due to the beautiful, though static, backdrop and the intriguing mystery. Here's a screencap from that Haunted Mansion, which remains one of my favorites:


As I grew up, they kept coming out with new games, and my sister and I keep playing them, despite the fact that we're in college. The excellent thing about Nancy Drew, we've discovered, is their appeal to pretty much any audience. 

Today before I could give this question a proper response, I had to return with my sister to one of my other old favorites, Treasure in the Royal Tower, which contains some of the best snooping (crawling through ductwork is always a plus, however improbable), nuttiest characters (including my favorite, the eccentric Professor Hotchkiss), and finest secret passageways of any game. 

My other favorites are Secret of the Scarlet HandCurse of Blackmoor ManorPhantom of VeniceShadow at the Water's Edge, and Captive Curse. If that seems like a lot of favorites, that's because it is. Well, also because there are twenty-five games.

Unlike Watts, I never found these games all that scary, but they do have their moments. I love the atmosphere of mystery they all have (with the exception of Haunted Carousel, which everyone should skip because it's endless arcade games) and I love playing them with friends.


P.S. Watts, wanna borrow my copy of Shadow at the Water's Edge? It's not scary I promi– OH GOSH WHAT WAS THAT NOISE??