Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Nancy Drew: Tomb of the Lost Queen

Nancy Drew: Tomb of the Lost Queen

Fall 2012 Software
Ages: 10 & Up
Price: $19.99

Hard to believe that, until now, famed teen gumshoe Nancy Drew has never sifted through Egyptian dessert sands stumbling upon ancient Egyptian relics and treasures while trying to get to the bottom of an alleged ancient tomb-raider curse. I mean, it's such a perfect fit. But, for Nancy Drew fans, newbies to the series, and wannabe Egyptologists, it's better now than never.

While the plot of the latest title in Her Interactive's acclaimed detective series (game 26 and counting), isn't particularly fresh, and the setting is mostly limited to the archaeological dig site, the tomb, and nearby tents, none of that diminishes from this first-person, 3D, 360-degree action-adventure's remarkably detailed and striking graphics, its new-and-improved interface, and smarter-than-ever game play.

The storyline: Seems that 60 years ago, British archaeologists in search of Queen Nefertari, The Lost Queen of Egypt, found the tomb thanks to a mysterious sandstorm that revealed it. Problem was, neither the team of scientists nor the tomb was ever seen again. But when history repeats itself, and Professor Jon Boyle is injured while another mysterious sandstorm uncovers Nefertari's tomb, Nancy Drew goes in search of Mummy Dearest-to find out who, or what, bludgeoned her friend the professor.

Of course, if you've seen the classic "Raiders of the Lost Ark" flicks, you already know ancient tombs like this are loaded with diabolic traps, hidden passages and legendary curses. True to form, players sleuthing as Nancy (whether at amateur or master levels) start digging for clues and suspects with motives to sabotage the excavation. And, as usual, plenty of suspicious characters are around to interview, from Abdullah the arrogant Egyptologist and Jamila the UFO enthusiast to Dylan the not-quite-right tour guide and Lily the not-so-studious student assistant.

Other elements of this game are familiar as well. This go-round finds an abundance of mini-games interspersed through the adventure, brain-teasing and mostly challenging puzzles and logic-bender riddles, ranging from the ancient Egyptian strategic board game "Senet" and a fun Shattered Cat Amulet puzzle to a Missing Scarab Puzzle and the Procession of Gods puzzle. And throughout the adventure are opportunities to practice translating hieroglyphs and decoding papyrus scraps that end up helping to solve upcoming puzzles.

Not only is the game fun and exciting for its sharply designed point-and-click environments and high-suspense story line, it requires nonstop thinking each step of the way. This is one pyramid scheme worth buying into.

Don Oldenburg   ©2012 Parents' Choice
A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of "The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion" (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

Look for this product at:
Her Interactive, Inc.

Share This