The dangers of being late for work are revealed in Rite of Passage: The Perfect Show.
You have been the piano teacher in Everlake for years, and never once have you been late for a lesson. So, of course, the first time you are running behind, tragedy strikes. Amber, the young girl waiting for you in the playground, is abducted by a shadowy figure. Overcome with guilt, you decide to take over the investigation, seeing as the local detective apparently gave up about an hour after Amber disappeared. See, this is what happens when you aren’t on time.
Pretty soon you (the player) learn that Amber is not the first child to go missing in Everlake. In total, there are four missing children. You set off to investigate their disappearances as you search through the town for clues to who the kidnapper could be.
At the beginning of the game, it seems like it’s going to be a straightforward kidnapping storyline, but it isn’t long before things take a supernatural turn. Unfortunately, it’s not entirely clear what is going on with the storyline unless you take the time to read your journal. You will be collecting a lot of information as you explore the town but it’s usually added directly to the journal. It’s very easy to miss important plot points.
The balance between adventure elements and HO scenes is well done. However, many of the HO scenes are used several times, and it would have been nice if there had been a bit more variety. The game also features several puppet theater scenes in which you find objects that are out of place and put them where they belong. These scenes also provide information pertinent to the story.
You will be solving numerous puzzles as you investigate the case as they are everywhere. The puzzles range in difficulty from easy to moderately difficult and can be skipped if you become too stuck. None of the puzzles are overly original but they are presented in unique ways.
The town of Everlake has a nightmare-like quality to it. The images are clear but something always feels just a little off, a little askew. This provides an excellent atmosphere for the storyline.
The music in the game is atmospheric but not extremely memorable. What was memorable, and not necessarily in a good way, was the sound that played every single time you found an item in a HO scene. The triumphant little noise becomes annoying quite quickly.
The Collector’s Edition features 55 masks hidden across the scenes. There is a mask icon at the bottom of the screen and when it turns green that means there is a mask to find in the scene. Collecting all 55 masks will prove to be quite a challenge.
There is also a bonus chapter in the Collector’s Edition that provides a nice bit of closure to the storyline, but is not vital to understanding the story itself. It’s nice to play a game where the bonus content isn’t required to wrap up the story of the main game.
While Rite of Passage: The Perfect Show may not be the most original game, it’s still a fun game with a lot of interesting locations to explore. I definitely recommend giving it a try.