For the most part advancement is good, though there are certainly negative elements. Outside of questionable means, there are a number of products, games and items that have been lost to time. Where some games have been revived, such as Earthbound, it’s significantly harder for fans to experience something like The 25th Ward: The Silver Case. With the original receiving a remake last year, Suda wanted to ensure there was a way for fans to experience this soon to be lost title, making it a new experience for many. With the original receiving mixed reactions, does the sequel improve on it or is it held back by the fact it was originally a cell phone game?
The 25th Ward: The Silver Case takes place seven years after the original and follows a number of characters trying to figure out the cause of a number of suicides in the 25th ward. The story is then told from three different perspectives and tackle different elements to bring it all together.
Correctness follows the HC Unit follows the team investigating the scene. When blood is found on the ceiling it’s determined there is more to this case, especially when a mysterious force appears to ensure everything is in order. This continues down a dark path eventually leading to answers.
Matchmaker approaches things from the Regional Adjustments Bureau, which is a major player in the Correctness storyline. Unlike traditional police forces, the Adjustments Bureau is a group of citizens who’ve given into “Criminal Power” and perform “adjustments” to those living in the 25 wards.
Placebo is the final side of the story and is a continuation of The Silver Case. In this story Tokio Morishima lost his memories of the Kamui case and watches the fall of the 25th ward.
After starting one of the stories, the problems with The 25th Ward: The Silver Case should be immediately apparent. For instance, Correctness is really boring and takes a while to get to the point, which isn’t worth the investment. With tons of exposition, needless profanity and silly comments, it just drags until the Adjustments Bureau appears and then new problems appear.
Since The 25th Ward: The Silver Case released on cellphones, there isn’t much in terms of excitement. Like, finding the body is largely just static images with dialogue and even the shootout is just a black screen with gunfire, with players being told the outcome. It’s something hard to get excited for, especially when there is a lot of padding and poor directions.
When you’re not reading dialogue or interacting with things, there are terrible gameplay sections. There is nothing that takes you out of the moment more than having to select a direction, click, select, click multiple times until you get to a place, pull out a code, memorize/write it down, correctly input it and then progress. All these things could’ve easily been taken out and it would’ve made for a far better experience.
Similar things can be said about progression choices. Often times the correct way to progress isn’t obvious, with some sections requiring multiple selections of the same choice, with no real indicator that is what you need to do.
In the end, The 25th Ward: The Silver Case is a weak game that will only appeal to Suda 51/fans of the original. Without this it’s a slow moving, poorly designed and boring title that likely won’t keep your interest. Combine this with a lack of voice acting and limited graphics and that is really the only appeal. Well, that and it’s an easy platinum.
[Editor’s Note: The 25th Ward: The Silver Case was reviewed on PS4 platform. The game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]