Gamers of a certain age will no doubt remember the Carmen Sandiego franchise, and the cartoon series that accompanied the games. Designed as educational sleuth-em-ups, the games put you in charge of tracking down international master criminal and head of the V.I.L.E (yes, really) crime syndicate as well as her various henchmen. Along the course of the investigation, you would helpfully learn about art, culture and geography along the way.
To be fair, the games weren’t actually bad. Sure, they couldn’t compete in terms of action or eye candy with other releases of the time, but for those willing to put the time in they provided an interesting and compelling narrative. The games certainly found an audience, and were really quite popular. The original game spawned numerous sequels, the aforementioned cartoon and a game show, but as a franchise it has been all but forgotten until now.
If you have never played the games before, you will soon get a chance, as Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? is due to arrive on Facebook next month. Whether you’re playing for the first time, or reprising your role as an ACME investigator, it’s well worth giving it a play.
If catching international art thieves isn’t your thing, then you may be more interested in the fact that The Oregon Trail will also be riding into town on Facebook at around the same time. Both games have been given a modern lick of paint, and given the affection gamers who remember them will have for the titles, I’m sure they will be faithful to their predecessors, lest they incur the wrath of retro gamers the world over.
A feature that enables The Oregon Trail to update your Facebook status to inform your friends that you have died of dysentery is unlikely to be included.