The Last Case of Benedict Fox is a bunch of

The Last Case of Benedict Fox is a bunch of good ideas. review

Played on PC and Xbox Series X

The announcement trailer for The Last Case of Benedict Fox immediately caught my attention and proved to be one of the most memorable events of last year’s Xbox Showcase. Not least thanks to the grotesque style that combines mysticism and the 1920s – as if Tim Burton had decided to film something by Lovecraft. And I wasn’t worried about the gameplay at all. How to ruin the classic formula? As it turns out, you can.

sad memories

The story picks up speed immediately. Benedict Fox first breaks into someone’s house, fights a cultist and then escapes over the city’s rooftops. It’s like we’re being shown an episode from the middle of the story and then they would give more context to what’s happening. Sounds logical, but no. The Benedict Fox’s Final Case focuses on the very last case of the detective. How life brought Mr Fox to him is unclear.

    It's worth playing the game to the end just for the view alone.

It’s worth playing the game to the end just for the view alone.

The main plot begins with the hero’s arrival at the mansion of his father, with whom he has not had any contact for a long time. But there Fox discovers only the lifeless body of a parent. However, Benedict is not very upset and instead decides to find out what happened. A dark follower, a demon nesting in the protagonist’s mind, helps unravel the mystery of the murder. This duet is clearly reminiscent of The Darkness in both communication dynamics and visual presentation. Even the demonic voice actor seems to be mimicking Mike Patton.

Supernatural powers help Benedict to penetrate the thoughts of other people, including people who have already died. Another dimension – limbo, as it is called here – is composed of memory fragments. Visually imaginative environments are The Last Case of Benedict Fox’s strongest feature. We have to constantly jump back and forth between the real world and multiple limbs of different personalities. Knowledge gained in one dimension helps discover new mysteries in another.

The places are breathtakingly beautiful. Artists and animators have masterfully transferred the author’s idea to the screens – reality mixed with human experiences and nightmares. For example, the library is transformed into an intricate labyrinth of shelves and the workshop into a multi-story laboratory – as if you were in the tower of Dr. Frankenstein.

    Such spatial gaps allow you to move between locations

Such spatial gaps allow you to move between locations

Of course, many paths are initially blocked by impenetrable obstacles. Alien consciousness must be probed by poking. In order to advance in the story, you not only have to use certain skills in the right place, but also solve puzzles. Most of these are based on encrypting four-digit numbers with a special cipher. In the second half of the passage you need to collect tarot cards, the correct combination of which will serve as the key to some doors. There are also unique puzzles, such as playing the piano or a chess game where you have to move certain pieces in the right order.

Solving puzzles is fun, but remembering what and where you met is not so much. But the developers decided that it’s more interesting not to mark on the map where and what kind of puzzles you found, if suddenly you don’t have a tool to solve them yet. The settings allow a maximum of automatic marking with which lock the door is locked.

The map is annoying with its lack of information – and this in a game that has placed an emphasis on studying the environment. Seen an item you can’t reach right now? It remains only to write in a notebook where to return later. They would at least put markings themselves. Well, at least the places where something is missing are marked with a translucent reddish background – and thanks for that. It’s a shame that I personally only noticed this shortly before the finale.

    The arsenal is rather modest and it will not be possible to replenish it - you can only improve what is there

The arsenal is rather modest and it will not be possible to replenish it – you can only improve what is there

However, all these are minor things compared to the main problem of The Last Case of Benedict Fox – the fights. It seems that even the developers understood this, and therefore reduced the number of monsters in Limbo as much as possible. It seems that the fights go smoothly: the detective is known to wield a knife in close combat and can shoot accurately with a single-shot revolver, he knows how to ricochet and deflect blows, and the inner demon allows you to slay enemies with a Tentacles to grab the shadows and throw them. But overall, the design works over time.

Special effects from blows block the actions of enemies, and sometimes you don’t even realize that the enemy is going to hit the hero in the face with his claws. Sometimes your combo will cancel an enemy attack, sometimes not. Sometimes the animations are so abrupt that you don’t have a chance to react to them. And in another situation you want to shout: “But I pressed it!”, But although you even saw the hero raise a shadow shield, the damage still passes. And the saddest thing is when the slap comes from out of sight: go into the next room, even the camera hasn’t had time to move yet when a running cop knocks Benedict unconscious.

There are times when the struggles suddenly come alive. Especially after picking up a few active skills. The hero scatters enemies with one throw, grabs a monster with a shadow tentacle and throws it into the abyss, cuts down the second with a quick combo and, to slow down time, blows the head off the third with an aimed shot – you I’m even starting to enjoy what’s happening. But such episodes are the exception rather than the rule. And avoiding fights is not worth it, because only defeating the monsters will give the hero ink for making tattoos, which will open up new mystical abilities for him.

    The style of the game cannot be taken away

The style of the game cannot be taken away

On the resulting crutches, it was not even possible to assemble interesting bosses. There are only two battles, and other collisions are an escape from danger with a saved route. Where there are enough annoying moments. Escape from the dragon’s head in the snowy panorama under the glass ball is played just as badly as it sounds original in words. Remember, if you simply close the game in a fit of rage without using the option in the save and exit menu, you will lose all progress.

* * *

It’s a shame about Benedict Fox’s last case. It has a great presentation and there are many good ideas under the hood. But a number of design flaws and offensive shortcomings in every way prevent you from calmly enjoying the game. And finally, most problems can be fixed with updates. I hope that will happen.


  • visually fascinating adventure;
  • interesting puzzles;
  • the dynamic between Benedict and his inner demon.


  • unbalanced, unsightly fights;
  • indistinct history;
  • The map leaves a lot to be desired.


For Unity, the game looks surprisingly beautiful: detailed backgrounds, smooth animations, juicy effects. And expectedly poor optimization – in some scenes even the Xbox Series X doesn’t last thirty frames.


The voice actors do their best, especially the inner demon sounds impressive.

single player game

Damn beautiful Metroidvania, in which they managed to spoil the main elements. Only the puzzles are really good.

Estimated travel time

The last case will take Benedict Fox 15-20 hours, including all the nuances and mysteries.

collective game

Not provided.

general impression

As if the last case of Benedict Fox was not the last game, undoubtedly the talented studio plot twist.

Score: 6.0/10

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About the author

Alan Foster

Alan Foster covers computers and games and all the news in the gaming industry.

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