Grim Legends 3: The Dark City Review

Artifex Mundi brings us another great title

Posted by B1ueSeptember   29th May 2018

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Grim Legends 3: The Dark City is the latest point ‘n click from Artifex Mundi. The last in the Grim Legends trilogy, The Dark City doesn’t disappoint.

As the game begins, players will find themselves thinking they’ve wandered into an Assassin’s Creed game as a cloaked character walks across rooftops before climbing the stained glass windows of an abandoned building. Sylvia, the main character, is a member of The Order, a secret organization that rids the world of monsters, specifically Maskwraiths. These creatures are minions of the Koshmaar, an evil being who can only be controlled by trapping it in the Incarceri Stone, an artifact of great power. Sylvia, whose memory was lost during an accident a year earlier, remembers only The Order and has been sent to dispatch a monster in a deserted theatre.

During this prologue, players are given the option of a tutorial that teaches the basics of gameplay, which are very easy to pick up. At the end of the scene, Sylvia learns that the theatre was all a diversion to pull her mentor Solomon away from Order Headquarters. An ex-member of The Order, Gabriel, uses the diversion to steal the Incarceri Stone. The race is now on to get the stone back.

The story now moves to the dark city of Lichtenheim, dark because Gabriel has released the power of the stone, and it has literally torn the city apart. Solomon and Sylvia must move through the city, ever in pursuit of Gabriel and the stone, fighting monsters created by the Koshmaar as they go. In addition to the hidden object puzzles one expects from Artifex Mundi, they’ve added a magic duel to the mix. At first I tried to hurry through these before realizing that there’s no time limit, so you can take your time and get perfect scores for them. You simply attack the enemy with your magic by choosing whatever symbols are not represented in his or her magic. It’s not difficult at all if you take your time.

Unlike previous Artifext Mundi games, this one doesn’t require you to play through in another format (like playing dominoes or Mahjong) to get through the puzzles. It’s a straightforward solving of puzzles and mini-games. The only things that really bothered me were the time limits required for some of the achievements. Each time you take on a Maskwraith, you must enter its Memory Mirror and solve the puzzles there to release it from the Koshmaar’s spell. There are five of these encounters, and there’s an achievement tied to each one requiring that it be completed in three minutes or less. Three minutes is plenty of time for the first two. After that, however, if you’re genuinely working through the puzzles yourself without a guide, three minutes can run out before you’re done. The three minutes won’t affect finishing the puzzle and moving forward with the story, but it might cause you to have to play again to pick up the related achievements.

There’s even one achievement for finishing a hidden object puzzle in twenty seconds. That’s….really fast. I suspect it would be easiest to get this one when you’re searching for a single object, like twelve white pearls, but when you have to stop and chip one of them out of an ice cube to get to it, that one can be a challenge. It can be really annoying, too, if you’re trying not to make any mistakes and click on an object only for the game to buzz you for being wrong when plainly that IS the object. Occasionally, the game is a bit too exact on where you have to place your cursor, but this isn’t a big thing once you’re past the achievements related to those puzzles. (As an aside, when the game asks you to find a "mascot" in a hidden object puzzle, it wants the little stuffed bird - just so you know.)

All in all, Grim Legends 3: The Dark City is an enjoyable game that, happily, doesn’t end quite as grimly as its predecessors in the series. For any fan of point ‘n click or hidden object puzzles, this one will be great addition to your collection.

Score: 8.5 out of 10

Release Date: May 11, 2018
Publisher: Artifex Mundi
Platform: Xbox One and PS4

Written by B1ueSeptember

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