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Nancy Drew: Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon
Nancy Drew: Last Train to
Blue Moon Canyon
Developer:Her Interactive
Publisher:Her Interactive
Release Date:October 2005
System Requirements

Don’t jump on board yet! Centuries have passed since prospectors found adventurer Jake Hurley’s abandoned private train among the lonely shadows of Blue Moon Canyon. Legends of untold fortunes begin where the rusted train tracks end. Did Hurley take the money and run away to start a new life? Alternatively, was he lost in the dark mining tunnels beneath the Canyon?

Prominent socialite, Lori Girard, brings together the best investigative celebrities in the business to unravel the mystery. However, before her hunt gains any steam, Girard vanishes among the artifacts! Is the last Train to Blue Moon Canyon HAUNTED or is this just a poor tabloid tactic to grab headlines?

Now, it is your turn to climb on board as Nancy Drew to see if you can uncover the truth at the end of the line!

Herinteractive develops the Nancy Drew series of games. This is a point and click adventure game. The game is easily loaded with the CD-ROM and you have the choice to install the entire game or a minimum install where you would have to insert the CD each time you play.

You will enjoy the clear graphics of the game complete with shadows and a haunting ghost. The sounds are very realistic and add to the excitement as you explore. The music fits right into the adventure of each scene. What makes this game unique is how you can travel between the train cars while the moving train is shaking. It is so realistic, which makes the game even more fun.

As you step into each caboose, you will find lots of exploring to do. I did not find any problems as I played the game. Everything went very smoothly.

All Abord!

Here is where you get insight into the characters. You finally get to meet Frank and Joe Hardy! You have spoken to them on the phone in just about all of the Nancy Drew games.

This time they invite Nancy to come along with them on this momentous mystery tour of the Old West and search for Jake Hurley’s legendary treasure. Lori, the host, is not too thrilled to see you; I guess you did not make her guest list!

Lori conducts a tour and then gathers everyone around the dinning room table for introductions. You miss the tour but you are just in time for something else. The lights go out and Miss Girard disappears! No one knows what could have happened to her. The search is on!

As you travel through the different cabooses, you will meet the different characters and discover how they can help your quest. John Grey is the host of a television cable series Ghost Chasers. Lori needs him for her Old West adventure, but does Grey believe in Ghosts?

Charleena Purcell. Some of you may remember speaking to her in Shadow Ranch. Maybe you can leverage your minor acquaintance to learn about the background of our host. You do wonder why she is there, someone who is a haughty and reserved romance author. From the time Lori screamed, Charleena made it clear that she was not in the mood to pay any attention to celebrity seeking publicity.

Your next celebrity is Detective Tino Balducci. He is a bit pompous but the only VIP on the train who remembers your name correctly! Tino is a troubled Chicago detective who spends most of present reliving his invented past. Maybe he can help with the investigation. However, he may not!

Our last is celebrity Lori Girard herself! As an aspiring tabloid queen, Lori wants nothing less than the attention of the world. After her father bought a shipping company, this bored teen found Jake Hurley’s untouched train in storage. She begged her father to have the train restored. The question is why? Now, the plot thickens!

The navigation in the game has the basic point and click functions which allows for movement and interaction with the characters. You will be using the famous magnifying glass cursor to search out clues that you come across. Your notebook will keep you abreast of all your findings. This way, you will be able to refer back to it if you forget what you are doing or where you need to be going.

An inventory section is available to keep objects and tools that you come across during your investigation for future use in the game. The latest feature is the camera; you are able to snap a shot of items in the cars. Keep it close by as you will need it.

Remember, you have a choice before playing the game to set it for Junior or Senior Detective levels. This depends on your sleuthing skills. Some practical tips can help you in both modes:

Exclamation points (!) at the bottom of the screen tell you that there are new items in your inventory or additions to your journal. If you need a small clue, you can call Bess and George on your cell phone. Depending on how far you are into the game, you can also ask the Hardy Boys. They are usually in the dinning car doing research.

After completing a difficult task (you will find this to be true!), click on the menu options near the bottom of the screen and save your progress. This will definitely minimize the frustration of losing your best game accomplishments.

You will come across some warning signs stating to "Keep Out". There are serious consequences for disregarding warning signs in this adventure, consider yourself warned! Do not forget about the second chance option. It is a detective’s best friend!

As you start your exploring you will come across an array of puzzles. Some are easy and some rather difficult. You see, the old train has quite a bit of Antique Artifacts that you will soon discover are puzzles, secret codes and poems to decipher.

One of the first puzzles you come across is in the sleeping car. What looks like a table is really something for you to unscramble. Keep walking through the cars and you will find Jake’s wife Camille’s private car. There is a lot to go over, so take your time. There on the wall is a woven sampler hanging, as you examine this closely, you’ll see that each stitch box has a number and a symbol. You will need to come back to that later. Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon also features a racing mini-game that you will need to win. However, pure adventure gamers should not be alarmed, once you get the knack of it, the racing sequence is easy.

You will come across a few perplexing pipe puzzles. Most detectives have found these to be the hardest of them all! The object of this type of puzzle is to completely connect the pipes without leaving any open ends. The potential is there for pipe dreams to turn into nightmares! If you happen to get stuck, you can always go to the Herinteractive board for more one-on-one help.

If you cannot dance, you will certainly have to learn how! Camille has a dance floor with hanging shoes. So put your good foot forward and get to STEP-IN! In addition, find out what that was all about!

Small World, Big Lineup! Jake left a doll of a puzzle that is hardly child’s play. You will have to rearrange the dolls so that it spells something! I wonder what!

Once you progress far enough in the game, other cabooses will open up to you, with puzzles that are more complex. The Projector Car is a great example with its strange contraptions that were high tech in Hurley’s era.

Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon is full of intriguing puzzles. The game features a great deal of content waiting for you to discover. The few puzzles mentioned in the review cover only a small portion of Nancy Drew’s latest adventure. The game does not only consist of the train experience either.

Next Stop! Cooper Gorge!

This is a small town, but you will find plenty to get into here! You will have to keep your eyes open and rely on your sleuthing skills as you go through the museum and the crypt. Whose body could the old crypt be hiding?

Before Nancy’s adventure is over you will also find yourself at the horse races and even working at a diner! As you struggle to unlock the mystery, you’ll also have to prepare orders and keep the customers happy.

So get on board and ride the Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon! Do not forget to ride the rail yourself! The game remains enjoyable throughout with many fun characters and their crazy personalities. Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon will have your mind working overtime figuring out the puzzles.

The game offers hours of thrilling detective work. As all the Nancy Drew games, Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon is targeted to mystery fans ages 10 to adult. It is worth noting that this is the kind of game that can be particularly enjoyable to play with other people. You can have a wonderful time discovering the mystery with a friend or family member. Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon can be easily recommended to adventure and mystery fans.

The final grade is 90/ 100

PC System Requirements:
Windows® XP/2000/ME/98
1 GHz or greater Pentium® or equivalent class CPU
128 MB of RAM
650 MB or more of hard drive space
32 MB DirectX compatible video card
16 bit DirectX compatible sound card
24X CD-ROM drive
Mouse and speakers