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Toby's Nose

by Chandler Groover profile

Mystery
2015

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Reviews and Ratings

5 star:
(17)
4 star:
(8)
3 star:
(2)
2 star:
(1)
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Average Rating:
Number of Ratings: 28
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- Feldmaus, April 14, 2017

- ikdc, February 1, 2017

- RoboDragonn, January 31, 2017

- TheAncientOne, January 28, 2017

- IFforL2 (East Asia), December 23, 2016

- hoopla, September 14, 2016

- Sorrel, May 31, 2016

- Doug Orleans (Somerville, MA, USA), May 17, 2016

- Robin Johnson (Scotland), May 10, 2016

- Pegbiter (Malmö, Sweden), May 3, 2016

- Khalisar (Italy), May 3, 2016

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Dog detective a la Lime Ergot, April 30, 2016
by verityvirtue (London)
Related reviews: parser, sanguine
Time to completion: 40-45 minutes

Groover presents a game in the best tradition of the locked-room murder mystery, featuring a canine protagonist. As with other games featuring canine protagonists, the sense of smell is tremendously important. In fact, in Toby's Nose, >SMELL acts like how >EXAMINE does in Lime Ergot. In fact, the author's note acknowledges the contribution of Lime Ergot and Pacian's Castle of the Red Prince in his coming up with the game's core mechanic.

Toby's Nose is generously and lavishly written; almost everything is implemented and written in vivid, eye-catching detail. As with other games using 'telescopic' observations, the parser remains a uniquely flexible tool to shift the PC's focus from objects distant both geographically and conceptually.

There are generous hints provided, but the writing gave clear enough hints to allow the reader to figure out what's going on. That brings us to another thing unique about this game: the reader has the responsibility to make the observations and deductions. Unlike many other mystery games, the game reveals nothing of the correct answer (i.e. whodunit), not in the form of a notebook, not in the form of a list of clues, leaving any explanation of the crime to the end. Shifting the responsibility to the reader to figure out what's going on invests the reader much more in the game.

As with other dog-PC games, this game remains lighthearted, even when the PC is recalling other characters' sordid details, and maintains a gentle sense of humour throughout. A comment about the ending is below, but overall, I found Toby's Nose a very charming and highly polished game, featuring excellent writing and a good use of the core mechanic.

(Spoiler - click to show)One might complain that the ending of Toby's Nose is a bit of a wall of text. One would not be wrong! However, this echoes the structure of the original Holmes stories - Doyle's idea of a resolution was quite often to have Holmes explain what he had been doing right under the reader's nose - so Groover is perhaps justified in this aspect.

- zylla, April 28, 2016

- Sobol (Russia), March 26, 2016

- dillenthevillain, March 18, 2016

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
The best murder mystery I have played. You are Sherlock Holmes' dog., February 3, 2016
In this game, you play as Sherlock Holmes' dog as you investigate a murder. The game features an innovative movement system based on Pacian's Castle of the Red Prince.

You explore a huge variety of locales with what seems like a hundred or more objects, but due to the system, it can be done quickly.

The one aspect of the game that initially turned me off is that it requires exhaustive search of all such objects. You have a single command to search them, but you have to repeat it over, and over, and over. It becomes like Where's Waldo.

However, as the story unfolded (using hints occasionally because I hurried through it in an hour), I became enthralled. This is a good mystery. As the author states, it is intended to be solved in your head, and not through gameplay mechanics (contrast this with the wonderful Infocom mystery Ballyhoo, where the focus is on solving puzzles to obtain more evidence, but a psychological element is still present).

I found the solution to be very logical and satisfying. I had two false accusations I was convinced of in the middle of the game before I realized I had missed crucial evidence.

Strongly recommended.

P.S. I was stuck at the very beginning because I did not understand the mechanic. You need to (Spoiler - click to show)smell nouns that appear in the descriptions of people, even if they are not present. So if someone smells like they went to a party, type SMELL PARTY, etc..

- Nancy Boo, November 27, 2015

- mixscarlet, October 14, 2015

- nf, September 7, 2015

- felicitations, August 11, 2015

- fortune telling, May 31, 2015

- BlitzWithGuns, May 9, 2015

- Mr. Patient (Saint Paul, Minn.), May 8, 2015

- Floating Info, May 6, 2015

- E.K., April 17, 2015


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