CSI: Deadly Intent review

By-the-numbers investigating with a few perversely enjoyable bits

GamesRadar+ Verdict


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    Technically woeful

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    Looks abysmal

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    Antiquated logic puzzles

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Case file no. 06100986. Upon arriving at the scene we checked the victim’s vitals. A thready pulse was found, proving this job was not, repeat not, a massacre as expected. Evidence has been lifted from the area but no witnesses are forthcoming – it seems nobody wants to touch this case with a bargepole. First impressions suggest a sloppy execution by an amateur. Further field work is expected to yield few results, however, so we’ll conduct the remainder of our investigation back in the office.

We can confirm that, for once, these hideous, grainy mugshots do it justice; this crime scene’s one of the ugliest we’ve seen in many months. We’ve matched fingerprints to one Telltale Games. Looks like we were wrong on the amateur front after all: a glance at their history shows they have a long rap sheet for this sort of thing. Strange; the sloppiness displayed certainly isn’t common for a seasoned pro.

Dr Robbins down in the morgue was able to dig up his dissection of their last victim – Hard Evidence. We’ve already extracted DNA from the fresh case, and running it through the DNA Analysis machine against 2007’s file confirms our latest suspicions: a perfect match. It’s Telltale’s MO all right, though it’s unusual to see their handiwork hasn’t improved at all since the last victim. Very lazy. Very vicious.

Microscope tests are sadly inconclusive. Due to the lack of any brightness modifiers the dark images are severely lacking in discernible details. Similarly, audio files recovered are impossible to trace with the Audio Analysis station – the voices on tape could be absolutely anybody’s.

The Assembly Table is covered in bits but no matter which way we construct the puzzle some pieces just do not seem to fit. On the surface 90% of it seems watertight, but on closer inspection the finer details don’t match up. A lead investigator who needs a rookie to solve his simple case? Experts who miss obvious and vital clues at major scenes, only to accidentally stumble upon them days later when tinkering with toys they shouldn’t touch when the trail goes cold? Cops who refuse to pick up blatant evidence until they’ve exhausted many other obviously pointless alternatives?

Above: Yes, that's supposed to be Laurence Fishburne leering at the corpse

No matter how we look at it, this case simply doesn’t add up, and with plenty more cases to rattle through before the month’s end this one feels like a colossal waste of time and resources. Toss this one back, kiddo, we’re moving on. Seems like this particular sample of the crop (puts on sunglasses) just wasn’t the cream.

Nov 11, 2009

More info

DescriptionSolve cases (with deadly intent, of course) in this mystery game from Ubisoft and Telltale based on the CBS Drama.
Platform"Wii","DS","Xbox 360","PC"
US censor rating"Mature","Mature","Mature","Mature"
UK censor rating"16+","16+","16+","16+"
Alternative names"CSI: Deadly Intent - The Hidden Cases (DS)"
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)