Trace Memory DS

Metascore
70

Mixed or average reviews - based on 51 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 51
  2. Negative: 1 out of 51
Buy On
  1. If you’re interested in trying something new, with a great plot and deep rewards, then this is a good pickup. If you’d rather have a more mainstream experience, with more obvious intense moments, then this won’t be a good purchase.
  2. Even though it's short, and the backtracking can be tedious, I would still recommend this game. I wouldn’t recommend paying full price for it, however.
  3. The only thing it has going for it is a well-written plot. The game isn’t overly fun to play, and can get annoying at times.
  4. An enjoyable point and click adventure that has a few quirks that stop it from being a great game. With a short length and linear style to it, the game really is over too quickly.
  5. At its best moments, a uniquely involving experience. These moments are all too fleeting in a game that has a very short lifespan, and while there's a nice little story and some flashes of brilliance in the design, it's all over far too soon.
  6. If you’re not the biggest adventure fan in the world (like myself) then the various puzzles will often have you slamming the DS shut in frustration, but for some strange and unapparent reason I kept coming back for more.
  7. If you need you thirst for adventuring quenched, Another Code is an essential purchase, but novices need to bear in mind that this style of game is very much an acquired taste, and experts should be mindful that compared to the adventuring greats it's not exactly in the same league.
  8. If only Another Code was double its length... It’s enjoyable and unputdownable until finish.
  9. You can’t help but feel that this is the type of game perfectly suited to the DS; inventive, addictive and something quite refreshing – a genre injected with a new lease of life on a new platform. It won’t take you long to complete Another Code, but the nature of the game mechanic will ensure you will enjoy doing so.
  10. Edge Magazine
    70
    Trace Memory is a sound and striking dissection and rebuilding of the adventure game, one that wraps itself well around the specs and strengths of the DS, but one that isn’t the sum of its parts. But it is a worthy and touching whole, nonetheless. [Aug 2005, p.96]
  11. games(TM)
    70
    This is the first time, apart from games such as Zoo Keeper and Meteos, that the DS’s capabilities have been used to good effect and - in some areas - expanded on to the point that we can see many developers in the future ‘borrowing’ ideas for their own games. [Aug 2005, p.100]
  12. It won’t start a second coming. What it does is showcase what the DS is capable of for this genre, and does it very well indeed. It’s also a very fun, if short-lived, experience and a very satisfying one. Just don’t be disappointed when you finish it in less than six hours.
  13. 70
    Entertaining, fun and well worth playing, but is over far too quickly to consider a definite purchase.
  14. Pelaaja (Finland)
    70
    Another Code is an interesting pocket sized old school adventure. The adventure and its puzzles are also quite traditional in the unexciting sense. Luckily, the game and all its puzzles cleverly take advantage of DS’s dual screen and touch abilities. [August 2005, p.74]
  15. Play Magazine
    70
    It's pretty short and linear, and as far as I can tell, you can't die. [Oct 2005]
  16. 70
    Though you are bound to find yourself marveling at the innovative use of the DS hardware and the creativity of the puzzles, the core adventure is simply way too short -- six hours at best.
  17. As an adventure game on-the-go for younger gamers, Trace Memory offers a solid challenge and a very good presentation and use of the touchscreen.
  18. Not a game without its problems: its short length, its stilted dialogue, its murky 3D graphics, its ridiculous name (seriously, what will the sequel be called?!); and yet there is an ineffable quality to the game that transcends these shortcomings.
  19. 65
    Less avant-garde than "Indigo Prophecy," far less self-important than "Myst V," Trace Memory is the very definition of a safe, comfortable, middle-of-the-road experience.
  20. netjak
    65
    It's easy to see that the DS was made for adventures like this, but I'm sad to say that unless they get better, we're going to see the point-and-click genre die out again. Trace Memory gives old-school gamers something to be excited about-- but only for a little while.
  21. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    62
    Slow to start and quick to finish, Trace holds your attention by the thinnest of strings: a deire to fill the blank pages of the story. [Oct 2005, p.122]
  22. 60
    With it's gentle pace, well-penned storyline and (just occasionally) some of the neatest puzzles we've seen this side of "Grim Fandango", PALGN wants to love CING's game. But it's all a little too obscure in parts, and over too quickly to encourage a real obsession.
  23. 60
    Even with the awkward and sometimes irritating dialogue, it's a good read from beginning to end, and it's a game that will fill the gap as a lengthy bedtime story.
  24. 60
    This isn't the type of game that anyone should play on the bus, standing in line, or at a sporting event. It requires your full attention, so warm some milk, grab some cookies, and hop into bed, as any distraction will make it incredibly difficult to enjoy.
  25. 60
    The perfect rental, lasting only a few short hours and, like most adventure games, doesn’t have much value beyond that.
  26. Trace Memory is an adequate title in its genre that manages to have a decent plot with likable characters, but its presentation is notably bare, as is its gameplay -- save for a handful of interesting DS-related puzzles.
  27. 50
    As a "my first graphic adventure," it works pretty well, with some unique puzzles and some interesting characters to get involved with. Veterans of the genre, however, will come away wanting more.
  28. The game doesn’t even come close to the better adventure games on PC, but it is still an enjoyable title to play through if you’ve exhausted all your other DS games.
  29. Trace Memory is basically "MYST" for kids, offering a short trip through puzzle-ville with occasional stops at the lame story station.
  30. 50
    The fact that they deliberately ensured that you can't pick up items until you need them is just a lame attempt to lengthen what is already a short game.

Awards & Rankings

#16 Most Discussed DS Game of 2005
User Score
8.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 42 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19
  1. Sep 28, 2015
    6
    I actually wanted to like this game. But really? The User score is based on emotion. I played this game after adventures such as 999, VirtuesI actually wanted to like this game. But really? The User score is based on emotion. I played this game after adventures such as 999, Virtues Last Reward, Hotel Dusk, Ghost Trick and some Ace Attorney games. Compared to them, this is bland.

    The premise was what made me want to play the game despite the bad reviews. I played Theresia, and I liked that. Why not this? This was not like Theresia, or any other good adventure game.

    It starts off with little Ashley. She has a constant blush, and makes a cute pouting face. She's confused, hurt and mad. She's found out that her Auntie Jessica has lied to her all of her life. She was under the impression her father was dead, and Jessica reinforced that impression. But daddy was alive. She'd been sent a letter and a strange device very reminiscent of a DS console, telling her to come to an Island where he has been all of her life.
    She also remembers what happened when she was 3. Her mother was murdered right in front of her, and she doesn't know why, or whom by. She is of the belief that she very well may be alive too, despite knowing better.
    Jessica goes off to see where her brother is when nobody is there to meet them, and she doesn't come back. The captain of the boat can't stick around and is ready to sail off after giving little Ashley some candy. So, Ashley is stuck all alone on the Island, perusing it's history and it's secrets, whilst trying to piece together her past.

    Sounds alright, eh? However, between the answer to her personal turmoil and 5 hour adventure is a whole lot of backstory about the island and it's resident ghost boy. I found all of that uninspiring. Lots of talk about Trace, and memories, and blah blah blah. None of it had any depth. Any substance. I found myself getting bored and going 'whatever'.
    All of the intense set-up is generally thrown away. I won't spoil what happens in the mansion, but despite the grim backstory, the rest of the game is pretty light.

    There's a ton of puzzles. Some are fun, some are very annoying. They all utilize the DS's capabilities well in it's early life. The exploration is bland, however, and the game is very linear. Some items can't be picked up until they are needed, D is an annoying fool and... and... ugh.

    It's very boring and uninspiring after you get over the premise is what I'm trying to say. Nothing seems to happen for the majority of the game except for learning backstory that you couldn't possibly care less about. If it was an Island with a gloomy past, I might get that. But it wasn't.

    So, yeah, I was disappointed.
    Full Review »
  2. Jun 20, 2013
    5
    The plot is interesting, the art is good, and the characters are fairly good, if a little unmemorable. My main issue with this game is that itThe plot is interesting, the art is good, and the characters are fairly good, if a little unmemorable. My main issue with this game is that it seems to have had a lot more cut scenes and dialogue than actual game play, and, the game play can get VERY difficult, so, it's not a good game for players who aren't very good at puzzles. It felt much more like a novel or graphic novel than a game. Full Review »
  3. Apr 30, 2012
    4
    Plays more like a tech demo than an actual game. Utterly bland on almost every single account - avoid like a plague! Oh, and if you ever wantPlays more like a tech demo than an actual game. Utterly bland on almost every single account - avoid like a plague! Oh, and if you ever want to show off the DS features to your friends, there are still much better games out there (like WarioWare). Full Review »