Rotating Header Image

Review – Safecracker (PC)

Kheops Studio | Aug 2, 2006

Steam’s Daily specials are just fill of interesting little surprises.  Safecracker is one of those surprises.  It’s pretty straight forward in it’s story and presentation.  You’ve been hired by a family to find the will of their recently deceased relative.  The catch is that the late Duncan W. Adams was eccentric and wealthy and obsessed with safes.

So much so that essentially, the entire home is a puzzle.  Never mind that either this guy knew he was about to die and had all of this set up before hand or he liked to open laser locks requiring a key inside a safe in the basement every time he needed to take a piss.

You navigate around the spacious mansion home using a pseudo 3D navigation method.   It’s pseudo 3D in that it is all three dimensional, you can freely look around for clues, but it’s not “FPS” 3D, you move through a series of fixed locations by using navigation arrows and the mouse.  In face, the entire game is played via the mouse, including dropping back to the menus.  Most games use the “Escape Key”, the keyboard does nothing in this game.  Not a problem, just slightly offsetting when one forgets.

Scattered throughout the home are puzzles to solve.  Finding the puzzles is pretty easy, they are all labeled by glowing red lights and show up on the in game map with Xs.  For the most part, keeping memory of which puzzles are unsolved makes finding where to go next fairly easy.  For example, you may pass a locked door then find a key later which matches the lock’s shape.  On the other hand, figuring out the point of the photograph you find or realizing that you have to dismantle another lock are less obvious actions, which can lead to some frustration.

The difficulty of the puzzles vary greatly.  Some are key codes that are just given to the player, others are simply finding the right key.  Other more difficult puzzles involve manipulating objects and switches to activate or open safes.  There are something like 35 puzzles to solve, all of which must be solved in order to complete the game.  They are split probably 50/50 on actual puzzles and simple gimmie “puzzles”.

There is also a vague story aspect through letters and diary entries found throughout the game.  These become important later after finding the will.  It’s a minor spoiler but one that actually is fairly obviously going to come up there more you realize how greedy the family is.  You must puzzle out and pick who should get the inheritance.  Actually, you just pick.  There isn’t much after choosing the heir, you just get a little blurb about what they did with the money and a single screen of credits.  It’s actually a bit disappointingly anticlimactic.

Unfortunately, that kind of is the whole tone of the game.  Anticlimactic.  The puzzles are pretty fun but once you’ve figured out the trick there isn’t much replay value.  Still, the visuals are nice and it’s pretty cheap, so it’s a pretty fun little budget title if you like solving brainteaser style puzzles.

Safecracker can be found on Steam Here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.