I’m a sucker for a good adventure game. No matter the subject matter, I’ll at least give it a shot. The sequel to the first Bertram Fiddle game, A Bleaker Predicklement, is both entertaining and punny. It’s certainly worth a look if you’re into period comedy games. It’s not perfect, but it’s still worth playing if you’re an adventure game fan.
The story of A Bleaker Predicklement takes place one year after the events of A Dreadly Business. If you don’t know what that one was about, you can read our review on it before continuing on. I’ll wait. Done? Okay, let’s continue. The game starts with Bertram working in a soap factory selling, well, soap. Times have gotten tough for this guy, or at least that’s the way it looks.
It’s Spelled ‘Geoff’
Very early on in A Bleaker Predicklement, Bertram finds himself framed for another murder caused by the dastardly Geoff the Murderer. Yes, that’s the guy’s name. Don’t ask me why. I don’t know. Sherlock Holmes arrests him as the culprit and the game continues on as our intrepid adventurer tries to clear his name. That’s pretty much the main gist of the entire game, but there’s other nefarious deeds afoot.
A Bleaker Predicklement is full of pop-culture references and bad gags, mostly in the pun department. If you’re averse to plays-on-words you might not find this one to your liking. However, I am a fan of this type of comedy. I found each reference to be both groan inducing (in a good way) as well as laugh inducing. Really, there’s something here to like if you’re into comedy games.
If there is one thing that I found slightly frustrating, it was some of the issues I found during my early playthrough. Most notably was a game-breaking bug in chapter five, but after restarting my game with the release version I managed to make it straight through to the end. I’m glad all of the bugs I came into contact with early on have been squashed as I did really enjoy all six chapters.
In addition to your typical Sherlock Holmes, who’s also in A Bleaker Predicklement, story throughout the early chapters you’ve also got other weirdness going on. Chapter five’s Lovecraftian homage in particular tickled my fancy. I won’t go into any detail, but if you’re into that type of story you’ll find something to like here. I won’t spoil any of the story here, but you do get some closure by the end.
A Bleaker Predicklement isn’t a perfect game. Even with the holes plugged up there was some inconsistency with some of the voice acting. However, at this point this is all just some nitpicking on my part and did not detract from my enjoyment of a man on the run and his misadventures throughout the Victorian setting. The second installment of the Bertram Fiddle series is a good send-off, and does wrap things up nicely.