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Day 6 - Chronicles of Crime 1400

One of the nice things about being home for the holidays is that we can play some games that require a bit more commitment than your run of the mill euro game or raucous dice chucker. I recently picked up the Millennium series for Chronicles of Crime which takes the system developed in Chronicles of Crime and creates a series of adventures through time, starting in Paris in 1400.

Play begins with you as a knight in Paris with your faithful sidekick Percival. You awake after having terrible visions of a future yet to pass and are compelled to investigate the crime. These two things are the hooks for this set of stories. You are a medieval knight, so you don't have access to crime lab or computer databases, so you must rely on your family members for information about the world of nobles and the seedier underbelly of Parisian society.

The rest of the game plays exactly like Chronicles of Crime, you scan QR codes to move between locations, or to ask suspects about other people and objects. The art is really well done and with the dream cards there's even more of it than in Chronicles of Crime. The graphic design is also very nice, with each set designed to match the time period it occupies, except in the app where it looks identical to the London scenarios, which is possibly to help with legibility but I would have preferred some more cursive fonts for the app to be more thematically immersive.

Your prophetic dreams provide a starting point for your adventures as they lead you into the mystery and they provide a satisfying interconnected thread through the story as you slowly piece together what each of them means. While your faithful companion, your dog, Percival gives you a new way to investigate scenes and clues, potentially unlocking new ways for you to discover locations and secrets. For example we found an item of clothing and were able to unlock a new location to visit by having Percival smell the clothes.

The Paris locale, while offering a nice change of location from the modern London scenarios, did leave us stumbling a little over pronunciations. While not practical, I would have loved voice narration for the game, partially so I could avoid all the reading, but mostly to really help with narrative immersion in the world of the story.

There's nothing here in Chronicles of Crime 1400 that is going to make you suddenly love the Chronicles of Crime series if you didn't enjoy the app based investigation of the original , but for those that love it, then this is a really nice next standalone entry in the series. There are four cases in the box (which is entirely too large as I have currently combined all four sets for the Millennium series into one box and they all fit comfortably) which provide around 4-6 hours of play for ~£15-£20.

The Millennium series can also be combined with The Chronicles of Time box for 4 more scenarios but that expansion doesn't seem to be readily available. Either way, I think there's a nice amount of gameplay in the box for the price and I'm looking forward to playing through the rest of the series.

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