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The 25th Ward: The Silver Case Review

Official Score

Overall - 50%


The 25th Ward: The Silver Case has got a unique style, but its script could use some serious edits. Paired with its cryptic and frustrating puzzles, and you’ve got a game best suited for those with a lot of patience.

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A follow-up to Suda51’s visual novel The Silver Case, NIS America and Grasshopper Manufacture’s The 25th Ward: The Silver Case features new characters, new puzzles, and new cases to crack. Should you set out to kill the past once more, or is this one mystery not worth solving?

The 25th Ward: The Silver Case Review

The world of Kanto’s 25th Ward was set up to be a utopia free of crime, but nothing could be further from the truth. A series of deaths have struck the area, and it’s up to the Heinous Crimes Unit to take on these cases that nobody else wants to tackle. Players will follow the first part of the the game from the perspective of Mokutaro Shiroyabu (aka “Jabroni”) and his partner in crime, Shinko Kuroyanagi (aka “the Japanese Dirty Harry”), though the game also stars a number of other key players in different intertwining narratives, including Shinkai Tsuki of the Regional Adjustment Bureau and the reporter Tokio Morishima.

There is a lot to keep track of here, made even worse by the lengthy exposition and text dumps that the game provides at any given turn. There are different organizations, bureaucracies, delivery guys at the Postal Federation, couriers, divers, observers, hit men, and other people that all come together in this tale. The script can be overly verbose at times, and also gives intermittent attention to certain characters. Things can be hard to follow, meaning that the story does not leave as much of an impact as you’d expect.

The 25th Ward The Silver Case - Gamers Heroes

The story of The 25th Ward: The Silver Case is neatly divided up into a series of cases, with some underlying story arcs, themes, and people of power between them. Everything slowly starts to come together in due time, with the mystery of “Kamui” running among them. Despite each episode lasting approximately an hour, things quickly venture off-topic. A request for a key will launch into a tangent about snuff films, while somebody else may tell you their literal life story. Some resolutions are quickly explained as well, with key players already knowing the solution to the mysteries from before. An editor would have been able to tighten up the script a good deal.

A good amount of the game will have players reading to progress, but there are some interactive elements. At key moments, players can look, talk, move, or use objects. Movement is done in a basic grid format, with most areas made up of blocky, low-poly hallways. Puzzles are sometimes incorporated into these parts, which can be downright infuriating at times. The game intentionally messes with you during these moments, either quickly explaining things in a convoluted manner or forcing you to traverse a 80 story complex to find the one right doorbell to ring. It almost feels at times that the game wants to see how much you will put up with, and certain stylistic choices like featuring prompts in French for no reason makes things that much more difficult.

The 25th Ward: The Silver Case has got a unique style, but its script could use some serious edits. Paired with its cryptic and frustrating puzzles, and you’ve got a game best suited for those with a lot of patience.

This review of The 25th Ward: The Silver Case was written based on the PlayStation 4 version of the game. A review code was provided by the publisher.

Casey Scheld

Casey Scheld has more than 15 years of experience in the gaming industry as a community manager, social media director, event specialist, and (of course) gaming editor. He has previously worked with gaming start-ups like Raptr, publishers like Konami, and roller derby girls at PAX West (check out Jam City Rollergirls)! Gamers Heroes is a passion project for him, giving him a chance to tap into the underground side of gaming. He is all too eager to give these lesser-known heroes of the indie space the attention they so rightly deserve, seeking out the next gem and sharing it with the world. Previously making appearances at events like CES, GDC, and (the late) E3, he is all too happy to seek out the next big thing. For those that want to talk shop, send over a tip, or get an easy win in a fighting game of their choosing, be sure to check out his social media channels below.

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