A Heist, with but different
The world is threatened by a massive cyber attack by the Zipacna cartel. Your mission is to break into the cartel’s house bank to steal the financial resources planned for the cyber attack. Take your time to prepare the bank robbery and coordinate the field agents – keep in mind: the execution happens in real time! Save the world from the cyber attack!
iDventure are a company we are familiar with as we played one of their other games a while ago. We didn’t review that game (I can’t remember why now) but we felt that The Heist deserved a review as we actually really enjoyed playing it so thought we should spread the word.
We had this game in our possession for a little while but because it said that estimated gameplay was 90-120 minutes we kept putting it off. But one Sunday we locked ourselves away from the world and bit the bullet to play this game. Before starting this game it’s worth noting that in order to play it you will need to have access to a mobile (ideally at least two) and the app ‘Telegram’.
Other than a smartphone with Telegram installed, everything you need to solve this game is in the box (or at least directs you to where you need to be). On opening the box you are directed to mission control where you will be able to set up your encrypted communication channel. As we were playing as a team of two, we split the communication with our Heist team members evenly; I was responsible for communicating with The Dark Dante and Ma Tahari, and Liz for Tyler and the AI Assistant.
Using Telegram wasn’t ideal as I would imagine not too many people have the app, but it was easy to set up and we were actually impressed with the bots they had in place for this as they really became an integral part of our team and helped to drive the narrative. A lot of the interaction was us using the right keywords/phrases to illicit the correct response from the bot, but there was more to it than that and they had included little videos of what they were doing (driving down a road, entering a comms room etc) which helped us feel like we were orchestrating this heist in real time.
All of the components in the box felt ‘real’ and quality which helped to make the game feel like a premium experience. I think this game can only be played once though as each game has its own unique mission code. It’s a shame as we enjoyed this game a lot and it would be nice to be able to pass it on to someone else, rather than it just sitting on the shelf or going in the recycling.
This is one of those games where everything comes at you at once. As soon as we opened the box and set up our communication channels there was a case of information overload as we had to sift through all the documents to work out what we needed now, and what came later.
It felt like it took us a little while to work out what we needed to start with, but once we got going we found that we were sucked into the story and found the experience really rather exhilarating and fast paced.
The puzzles were the usual type of puzzles that you would expect in a heist-type game, and as this was designed to be a believable experience, everything was hidden in plain sight – no random maths puzzles here just to give you a code.
We didn’t realise it at the time but the signposting in the game was also decent, with a number of post-it notes helping us to identify the information we required. I must admit though, there were a couple of moments where we weren’t completely sure what we needed to do so had to speak to mission control to help us out, even then we took a bit of a stab in the dark on our responses.
As the clue system is all part of the bot system it can be both good and bad if you need help. As it is all set up with automated responses you need to make sure you’re phrasing things correctly or you may not get the response you need. Generally though, we did find the AI was decent enough to get us back on track.
We actually managed to kill the bot system during our game (not sure how) but a quick message to the developers and we were back up and running. I gather this glitch has now been fixed so hopefully your experience is a smooth one.
It’s a shame this game can only be played once, but we enjoyed it. The clever use of bots helped immerse us in the heist and this game felt very different to others we have played.
- Internet connection
- Pen and paper for notes (optional)
- Telegram installed on phone
|Value for Money|
Team: 2 players
Time Taken: 1hr 05mins
*Disclaimer: we weren’t charged for this experience, but this has not influenced our review.