Grim Tales: The Bride is a beautiful game with a lot of wandering
Grim Tales: The Bride opens with the story of your sister vanishing on her wedding day. Your home has been plunged into grief over her apparent death and it’s up to you to solve the mystery. Was Luisa murdered or is there something else going on?
You will be “assisted” by a demon guide, a strange ghostlike being that will guide you through Luisa’s memories of her courtship with her fiancé Gray. You will access these memories by searching the family mansion for pictures. Once you have traveled to the memory, you will need to unlock an item that is tied to the memory to travel back to the mansion.
Everything in Grim Tales: The Bride is locked. Cupboards, cabinets, jars, even a ladder, all of these items and more require special keys before you can use them. The key will be kept in the spot that is furthest from the locked item. Once the item is unlocked it will need to be used in a spot that is furthest from where you are, and so on. Hopefully, you’ve brought sturdy walking boots because there is no quick travel in this game. At one point you will be going back and forth across 12 scenes several times, just to access one item. This becomes frustrating after a time because it is making the game artificially longer.
Grim Tales: The Bride is a beautiful game. The scenery is amazingly detailed and there are a lot of areas to visit. Unfortunately, the same level of detail was not put into the story. The story seems to make sense until you start to think about it. The closer you get to the end of the game, the less sense it makes. The time from when your sister vanishes to when the game takes place is never stated, but you are led to believe it’s been a while. However, there is still police tape up in the house (wasn’t she pushed off a bridge?), and, without giving the plot away, other events point to it being a more recent occurrence. However, the house looks like it’s been abandoned for some time.
You will be searching hidden object scenes and collecting inventory items on your adventure. The hidden object scenes are well done and the items fit with the scenes. I had to laugh at one point when you hover your mouse over a hidden object scene and it is actually labeled “junk pile”. The scenes are challenging but you won’t require a magnifying glass to find items. Once you’ve completed the scene, you will be given an inventory item.
There are numerous inventory puzzles as well as regular puzzles scattered across Grim Tales. For the most part, the puzzles are ones you’ve seen before and they are fairly easy to solve. Near the end of the game the puzzles do become more challenging but if you become stuck you can choose to skip them. There are three levels of difficulty ranging from casual to hardcore. One nice feature in the game is the ability to change the level of difficulty at any time in the options menu.
The inventory puzzles range from logical to why do I have to do this to move forward. Explain to me why I cannot remove police tape with my hands? Why do I need to find something to cut through it with? These types of puzzles make no logical sense.
The music in the game is enjoyable and fits the mood. There is no voice acting, and it would have been a nice addition. However, since the only character who ever seems to speak is your demon guide, it doesn’t detract from the game.
The collector’s edition of Grim Tales: The Bride has approximately an hour’s worth of gameplay and several additional scenes. The bonus gameplay takes place sometime after the main game and will have you revisiting your family mansion but with several new scenes added.
Grim Tales: The Bride is an enjoyable game but it becomes repetitive after a while. All the wandering back and forth becomes tedious and starts to detract from the gameplay. I would recommend giving the demo a try before buying.