The Case of the Golden Idol

The Case of the Golden Idol

released on Oct 13, 2022

The Case of the Golden Idol

released on Oct 13, 2022

A new kind of detective game that allows you to think and investigate freely. Discover clues surrounding 12 strange and gruesome deaths and build your own theory. Pick your suspect, deduce the motive, unmask the awful truth.

Also in series

The Rise of the Golden Idol
The Rise of the Golden Idol

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This review contains spoilers

Case of the Golden Idol presents a wonderfully grim mystery that slowly reveals itself as quickly as the scope of the story expands. Each case unfolds in a similar way to Return of the Obra Dinn, where all the information you get is a snapshot in time of a single moment. The way your knowledge of the situation and context broadens as you click around the scenes feels tuned perfectly. It’s set up to make the player ask key questions and have the agency to find their way to answers, whether right or wrong.

This setup works most of the time through the game’s 11 cases. There were certainly times where I felt the need to brute force some aspects of the solution but it’s a heck of a lot more fun than looking up a guide.

The highlight of the game for me was the epilogue when I could really piece everything together. Personally, it served as more of a climax than the 11th puzzle. It felt soooooo fulfilling to finally see the entire plot throughline of the entire game on paper and have it validated. 2nd favorite moment was the case where Lazarus/Edmund demonstrated the miracle of flight to become Gryphon Reborn. The footprints, the little history scroll, the idol hidden in the staff, it was all so fun to comb through. The case following that where everyone is at the political estate and on a drug bender was really satisfying too. Reading all the testimonies and finding the discrepancies was just a thrill. Oh and the case where you have to determine the 4 virtues of the Order Party and how much point totals they negate. And then you find out the points are actually mapped to years??? Crazy stuff. The last case of the game felt a bit too big for my taste. I ran into a lot of friction with navigating the menus and all the different scenes in that one much more than all the others. Also Little Pip is character of the year and I really wish he was more involved in the narrative, that sneaky little troublemaker.

The art is ugly as hell but in an endearing, 90s, point-and-click adventure kind of way. The dog sprite made me laugh my little butt off when I first saw it. While I think Case of the Golden Idol is missing the artistic flair and sense of exploration of other 3D mystery titles like Chants of Sennaar and Obra Dinn, I think the way it doubles down on the investigation and drama is quite virtuous.

Tried out the first few levels on game pass, wasn't feeling it :(

Es un juego de detectives en el que tenemos que resolver varios casos conectados, aunque en realidad somos un ente omnipresente y nuestra presencia no afecta en nada al hecho. A pesar de que no seamos un "detective real" en este universo, resolver lo que ocurre se siente satisfactorio igualmente. Me gustó mucho.

Great game. Really tickles that detective game itch left by Return of the Obra dinn. It really does demand the player's observational skills and deduction to be on point but rarely does it feel like you have to guess to solve each puzzle. Took off half a star due to the terrible artstyle. I get what thier going for but its not my cup of tea

Unfortunately very bugy on the xbox. Need to pick this up on the PC sometime soon

This was my second time playing through this game and I must say I think the narrative and gameplay are all brilliant. Masterpiece of a game.

The striking visuals give it a distinctive look and the puzzles get very challenging, yet rewarding. Absolute must play if you're in to logic based puzzle solving.

This obviously didn't affect my score but I should also note I replayed this on the Xbox version during the first week it launched. Hopefully this won't be an issue for long but the last few missions have some very serious UI bugs that make the game near impossible to complete. I did make it through the game, but it was a huge struggle and headache just to fill in the necessary blanks. Play this on a PC if possible.