LifeisXbox’s BROK the InvestiGator review | When a game has a pun in its title, you’re already off to a good start with me. In BROK the InvestiGator, a brand new game by COWCAT, you play as BROK, a detective slash investigator, who in fact, is an (alli)gator. Very clever! Anyway, BROK the InvestiGator combines multiple genres and elements in one game: point and click, adventure, beat ’em up, RPG… it almost seems too good to be true. And reading the introduction to this game actually got me a bit worried. How the hell is someone going to pull off combining everything without it feeling forced and lacking depth? Well, I can already tell you that the developer of BROK the InvestiGator did not disappoint with their game. There is a lot of ground to cover, so let’s dive in.
ℹ️ Reviewed on PC | Review code provided by PR/publisher, this review is the personal opinion of the writer.
What we Liked!
- Action meets puzzles | As a detective, you’ll be solving cases and exploring various places. Of course, this includes solving puzzles, having interrogations, combining items, etc. I’m not exaggerating when I tell you literally every part of this is an insane amount of fun! This is basically what investigation mode is all about. With a point-and-click approach, you can look around and discover clues. Of course, you’re not really that correct and tend to get into trouble a bit, so there is also a fair amount of action involved in BROK the InvestiGator. It’s all really fun and if you don’t know what to do next, chances are you can just punch your way out. Switching between investigation and action mode can be done with one simple click, allowing for quick and smooth gameplay.
- More is more | For a game that only costs 20 Euros, you get a huge amount of content. The playthrough of one ending is between 10 and 20 hours, depending on how long it takes you to figure things out. There are more than 10 different endings (!) in this game, all based on the choices you make throughout the game. And this is a game where your choices actually matter because they might come back later to haunt you. Wait, there is more! There is a main storyline to follow but there are also some optional quests you can dive into. I often find side quests in games not worth it, but since this entire game is so great, the side quests were quite inviting as well. Want even more? Well, the narrative switches between two people. So yeah, you’re playing with two characters that you can freely switch between. Well, not always, but sometimes. One is our investigator Brok and the other is Graff, a teen who is kind of family and with whom Brok shares an apartment.
- Elaborate narrative | BROK the InvestiGator takes place in a futuristic light cyberpunk world where animals and robots have taken over. While some citizens are privileged and live under a protective dome from ambient air pollution, others aren’t so lucky. The ones living outside the dome struggle every day to make it through the day. One of the lesser lucky inhabitants is Brok, a private detective, and former boxer. He lives together with Graff, a teenage boy who is also the son of his deceased wife. The cause of her death has always been a bit of a mystery, and recent events indicate that something even more tragic than he first thought may have happened to his beloved. At first, I thought the story sounded rather simple, but once you start playing, you’ll see that there is so much more happening. There are plenty of characters to meet that will each have their own story to discover, while the main mystery of Brok’s deceased wife is being uncovered along the way. I found myself really caring about the connections that Brok made. It’s clear that a lot of work was put into the writing of this game, and as a copywriter myself, I can definitely appreciate this a lot. Big thumbs up for the story and the storytelling!
- Visually appealing | Let’s continue with the next plus of BROK the InvestiGator and that’s the graphical style. The futuristic cyberpunk theme is already something I knew I was going to enjoy but add to that the attention to detail and you get one visually appealing masterpiece. All the characters had their own distinct look and feel, which made it even more fun to meet new NPCs. On top of that, discovering new areas was also a blast as they were filled to the brim with details.
- Top-notch voice acting | An indie game that is fully voice acted? In a superb way? Yes, that is exactly what you are getting here. I was truly impressed by this entire game having such great voice actors. Every new character you meet immediately gets even more personality by hearing them speak. It not only added more value to the game but to the overall story as well.
- Take it easy | Whether you like the story or the action (or both) part of BROK the InvestiGator more, there is a difficulty option for you. You either go standard if you want the full experience or you can jump into the relaxed mode, which focuses on the story rather than the combat. And what is even better, you can switch between these difficulty options at any time. If you are playing in the standard mode and die a few times, the game even asks you if you want to switch to relaxed mode. Yes, I found this out by dying. A lot. But that’s not all the game does to help you! There are hints that you can unlock if you’re stuck. In every scene you enter, there are three ‘ads’ hidden. If you find one, it can be used to unlock a hint whenever you’re unsure what to do next. Usually, hints have multiple ‘steps’, meaning you’ll have to use more than one ad to get the most help. Still, sometimes using just one ad suffices and it’s only necessary to unlock multiple hints if you really want the game to spell out what you have to do next. I’m a big fan of hints in games, and man, did it come in handy in BROK the InvestiGator! After a while, a character is introduced that can help you locate ads you haven’t found yet, if you’re willing to pay them a few coins.
- Combat | If I’m being really picky, I guess the combat could’ve been better. It’s pretty basic now with only some moves and combination moves. When leveling up, you can upgrade your health, strength, or special attack but it’s all fairly standard. I also kind of disliked the fact that the special attack could only be used after you lose 50% of your health. The combat animations are also nothing too special, they are implemented and that’s basically it. I suppose some more polishing would’ve been welcome, but the bigger focuses of the game are definitely the narrative, detective work, and exploring.
- Glitches | I had instances where the gameplay would be frozen for like one or two seconds. This never happened mid-gameplay but rather when a shift happened, e.g. going from exploring to dialogue. It wasn’t anything game-breaking at all, but since it did happen a few times, it was noticeable.
What we Disliked
- I got absolutely nothing!
How long to beat the story | 10 to 20 hours (for one ending)
How long to get all achievements | I’m guessing about 100 hours or more.
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Head of PC team. PC, Switch, and Xbox game reviewer. Also a marketeer, concert and animal lover, and photographer in training 🙂