CSI: Fatal Conspiracy
CSI: Fatal Conspiracy is one of many games based on the actual CSI: Crime Scene Investigation television series which stars Lawrence Fishbourne, George Eads, Marg Helgenberger and all the other characters from the series itself. You take the role as a new rookie Investigator that has been assigned his first investigation which is working with Sara Sidle (Jorga Fox) on a case to do with a burned down business that hasn't really been making much profit and you uncover a body that is buried there and throughout this mission you find evidence and clues suggesting that the killer could be an ex boyfriend or even the buildings manager but I wont say anymore. The story is separated into five different and fairly long cases, however it really doesn't take long to complete. As you progress through the missions things start coming together. There is a main story to the game which is pretty good and it is basically linked to every case and its about taking down a drug lord, which does come later in the game. CSI: Fatal Conspiracy isn't like your normal games and it does come with some similarity towards the series which is rather enjoyable, especailly interacting with the characters from the series as they look and are voiced by the actual actors/actresses.
The gameplay really impressed me about this game but it does have one major flaw and that is basically the fact this CSI game is just the same as the others but different cases and maybe a few different cast members from the series and maybe a slightly different story, which I think could be improved. However there are a lot of great things about the gameplay of the game. The fact that the game is voiced by the actual actors is brilliant and its even better that they look exactly like they do just a little bit more animated. Also I think its great that you don't play as the actual characters from the series as its better for the story that your the new guy. As your playing you don't get to see what your character looks like as you see it from a first person view and you also don't actually move round using your analog sticks, when in fact you just use a cursor and click what to explore and I find these more suitable and better for this type of game. Another good thing about the gameplay is that you can visit the lab from the series and analyse the evidence using the equipment they actually use. Also when finding pieces of evidence you get to use tools such as, a camera to collect visual evidence. Also the swab to take clean samples of liquids or even dry liquids to get analysed for DNA. Other tools are used in the game such as Fingerprint powder to gather prints, Mikrosil which is putty-like casting material to get moulds of tool marks and also many more tools are used and all the evidence you collect you have to analyse back at the lab through the computers or other means. Also throughout the game you have a PDA which stores all information you require and you can use this to fast travel back and forth between the places you need to go. You also receive hints from other CSI members which do make the game rather easy and they cant be turned off. Throughout the story you do get the feel of the series as you play and it is rather intriguing.
Graphics & Sound
The graphics are quite impressive because most TV series that get made into a game are usually rushed and look slightly rubbish and boring, however they're not the best ever but to be fair they have done really well and are quite special in some places. I love the way they have designed the characters in the game as they actually do look really similar to there counterparts in real life. Also the graphics of the buldings and places you visit are really well designed, plus the lab and morgue look exactly the same as they do in the TV show which is very impressive in my opinion and this makes the game that so much better. The only downside to the graphics in my eyes were when the tools are used you cant really tell what they are except for the fingerprint tools because they look rushed and are quite plain. But all in all with the characters looking like they do I was pleased with this aspect of the game.
The sound was equally impressive as the graphics especially with the characters. All of the cast in the TV show have their unique look and also their voices which is very impressive and by far one of the game. Another thing I was impressed with the games sound effects was when you use a tool or the equipment at the lab they sound brilliant. The music in the game was quite good in parts for example when your doing a case and you discover something really important it gets kind of thrilling and on edge music and I was quite impressed with this, however there isn't much else in forms of a soundtrack to the game. But overall I did like the sound effects in the game.
Difficulty & Longevity
CSI: Fatal Conspiracy could prove somewhat easy for most people as there are way to many hints on the game itself and can be seen as a rather let down in the gameplay itself, however it all depends on the style of the gamer as this would be really great for the amateur gamers or even for fans of the series because trying to work out who the killer is has always been a good point in the show and now being in the game trying to solve it is even better. The puzzles can be somewhat mind boggling and may take a while to do them but eventually you will get a hint if you get stuck. You cant be killed on the game and you cant get a game over screen or anything like that so it does make it rather simple. One tricky part could be the fact you have to question the suspects and if you say the wrong things or use the wrong evidence to question them could lead to you losing points on your final rank at the end of the case, which may result in no achievements. But to be fair its a rather simple game and very suitable for most.The longevity of the game is the worst part about it by a million miles and this is by far the biggest let down. Also no multiplayer modes or online play which is a let down. I usually expect a game to last at least 15 hours and with only just five cases it took me about 6 hours and that is doing everything, however it can be a bit longer for newcomers to games like these, because they can be a bit brain testing at times but it really is a let down in this department so if your looking for a game where you can rack some hours up then don't get this because you will finish it before the night is over!
Good & Bad Bits
To me there are a lot of great bits about CSI: Fatal Conspiracy and some of these are, the fact the characters are voice controlled by the actors, you can interact with them and other parts in the game, the look of the characters is really intriguing, also some of the cases are very similar to ones from the series but jumbled together with different bits to make it more real while at times different making it harder. I also enjoyed the layout of the places you visit because there are multiple rooms to explore to find your evidence. Also you use all the tools they use in the show which is another great thing. Some people like easy games and this can be quite easy at times and very predictable but at times somewhat difficult with the puzzle. It also offers realism and I like that in some games. So all in all a lot of good points.
Now for the dreaded bad parts because there is quite a few. Some of these include the fact that the game has only five cases as I mentioned above and although this seems not like many they can take a bit of time to complete. The game itself isn't long enough and an average gamer would have this completed in probably less than 10 hours max. Also the achievements are way to easy and also not so many of them. After completing the first case I had acquired more than half the achievements which isn't to good they need to take longer to get. Also some of the outcomes are actually quite obvious, where as the series has a fair few shocks. Also when questioning suspects it only gives you a few multiple questions to ask and there should be many more. So quite a few bad points in the game.
My final thought about CSI: Fatal Conspiracy are pretty much mixed feelings, however I will probably sway more to it being good even though the game is far to short to be even considered a brilliant game. But the game itself is quite like the show in many ways. I quite like this game because I love the show and its pretty good value for money. I bought the game brand new and sealed from Amazon for £8.99 and I would say that is value for money to any fans of the show or fans of crime games or adventure games. However if your neither of them I would have to say its not worth that because of the longevity of the game and the fact it is a crime game. CSI: Fatal Conspiracy has no multiplayer options what so ever and to be fair I really couldn't imagine them putting a multiplayer option on it because what could you do? It has its limits. I think the game would of been more respectable with some online additional features or even downloadable content but there are none what so ever. To be honest I have no idea why the game is only five cases long as these disks nowadays can hold a lot of data. The game has a rating of 16+ and I would have to agree with that slightly. The game does contain scenes that may offend some gamers or even scare the younger players because of bits like discovering the dead bodies and also it does contain some slight strong language in places. But all in all I would have to say this game is worth its value because of things such as the characters you can interact with, the story to the cases are quite good and you get to use all the tools and equipment they use in the show. All in all I would say its a good game CSI fans will love this and I would have to give the game a 7/10, mainly because I am a CSI fan!This review is also on DooYoo under the username: simon020187!