Mixed or average reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 31
  2. Negative: 1 out of 31
  1. Not a perfect game. It suffers from patchy controls, dull and unremarkable locales and an ending that is a bit of a let down. But it also has some gorgeous 3D graphics, top notch voiceovers, music and dialogue, and an ultimately engrossing storyline which is well paced and will keep your interest piqued.
  2. While its old-school design is unlikely to win many new converts to the genre, it is still, flaws and all, the best adventure game to come out in several years.
  3. With a compelling story, complex puzzles and great voice acting, I couldn’t ask for more. The controls were a bit frustrating at time but all in all a great experience.
  4. While hardcore fans of the adventure genre may want something more challenging and less linear, casual fans or newcomers can certainly enjoy what Secrets has to offer and not be disappointed in the least.
  5. An engrossing story that's backed up by excellent visuals and sound that immerse you within the game's setting and locations.
  6. Needs some polish, but otherwise, this is a true return to form. [Dec 2006, p.104]
  7. The Angel of Death manages to keep the adventure genre alive. Budget and/or time constraints show: the game is quite rough around the edges. It is also too linear although the puzzles are good and varied. Why cannot the dialogue be fast-forwarded? [Dec 2006, p.82]
  8. As an adventure game, Secrets of the Ark is a very good one, assuming you can get over the hurdles and high degree of difficulty some of the puzzles require.
  9. As it is, it was a damn fine fortnight of adventure, and George will no doubt be back on the strength of it.
  10. Not what we’ve hoped for, but it’s a step ahead and may be one of the best adventure games released this year.
  11. It's not a masterpiece, but it's hilarious, brilliantly moody, and worthy of attention from any fan of adventure or humorous games - or graphics effects nerds.
  12. A fine adventure game, although not the best Broken Sword ever, and is well worth adding to your inventory.[Dec 2006, p.98]
  13. It's hard, its opening acts don't match the quality of those which follow and some characters grate - but as a modern rendition of a traditional formula, The Angel of Death has both pointed and clicked wisely. It's another nail out of the adventure gaming coffin. [Oct 2006, p.58]
  14. Secrets of the Ark is a little too in love with itself, but this is still a first-rate traditional adventure with a great story and mostly commonsense puzzles.
  15. There isn’t anything exceptional about this game, but it compares well to most adventure games being released today. Fans of Broken Sword won’t be disappointed.
  16. The puzzles will definitely make even seasoned adventure title players flex their brainpower a bit, but given that the vast majority of the puzzles make some sort of logical sense even players new to the genre should be able to think their way through to the solution with little help.
  17. Yet another solid adventure game from The Adventure Company. Nothing spectacular, but it’s still a fun way to scratch the adventure game itch.
  18. Top marks for creativity, but the occasional flaws, bugs and, to repeat my oxymoron, lack of unnecessary depth, make it look like the game could have done with another 6 months of fine-tuning.
  19. I don't see anyone anticipate a co-worker saying, "man, I wish 5pm would hurry up and get here. I want to get home and play Secrets of the Ark" in the near future. But I can see the adventure fans finding something of value buried in there somewhere with Mary of Magdalene.
  20. It's still intelligent and sometimes witty. But this time it's ringing with emptiness. [Nov 2006, p.94]
  21. It's a great game in so many respects, and we're overflowing with admiration that Revolution stuck to its purity of vision about what an adventure game can and should be about in the mid noughties. But when you're sat in front of the monitor filled with rage because of some utterly obscure puzzle, you'll have to question whether consistently busting a player's balls in so many ways is the right approach these days.
  22. To put it simply, The Angel of Death is an exceptional 2D point and click title masquerading as a fairly good 3D counterpart. There is simply no reason why George now resides in a new multi-dimensional world, bar entertaining its weakest element – its physical challenges.
  23. A decent new adventure in the (hopefully ongoing) Broken Sword saga, but its erratic quality prevents it from fulfilling its own potential, making it best suited to existing fans of the series.
  24. I would only recommend it to the most dedicated of adventure game fans, particularly those familiar with the previous games in the series.
  25. I was a little annoyed when the ancient mysteries ended up revolving around the Knights Templar and the Ark of the Covenant. Haven’t those two things been involved in enough ancient mysteries without trotting them out for yet another?
  26. In fact, everything about SoTA feels done in a perfunctory and barely interested way. [July 2007, p.58]
  27. Time and again in The Angel Of Death, a perfectly obvious solution is ignored in favour of an absurdly contrived one, and whenever a puzzle hinges on the responses of NPCs... these prove bizarre and unpredictable. [Nov 2006, p.84]
  28. A solid-if-not-spectacular entry, and fans will appreciate that they haven't been forgotten and will doubtlessly eat this up and ask for more. But anyone who hasn't already invested hours in the three previous Broken Sword games will have a hard time seeing Secrets of the Ark through to the end.
  29. If you have the perseverance to stick with puzzles that have been designed to test the patience of time itself, the slow introductory pace and continuous struggles with the game's interface (the genre's weaknesses as a whole) then Broken Sword 4: The Angel of Death probably provides everything you're looking for.
  30. Deliberately lacking ambition, this is an encore that will please patient fans, but also reminds us why the point-and-click adventure is now an endangered species.
  31. There’s a fun story to be experienced here, but it’s constantly halted by the lack of progression. Any notion of pace, suspension of disbelief or immersion is constantly shattered by obtuse puzzling, aimless wandering and wooden, static performances. [Nov 2006, p.104]
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 24 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 9
  2. Negative: 3 out of 9
  1. Sep 20, 2010
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Probably the most disappointed I have ever been with a game. I would rate BS1 in my all time top 5 games and it is head and shoulders above the newest installment. Most of what made BS1 great is not found in BS4. Tthere were only several brief moments in the game when I actually felt like I was playing a series that I loved every minute of previously, even BS3. The story never grabbed me and pulled me in at anytime, I didn't care about the other characters and worst of all I found the game a complete chore to play. Had this not been a Broken Sword game I would have given up on it. Full Review »
  2. lelloV.
    Jan 21, 2008
    Poor game-the previous title (dragon) was clearly better. The plot is incredibly dull, and the story moves at the speed of plight. The death knell for this once glorious franchise? Full Review »
  3. DaveE.
    Oct 1, 2006
    I'm sure many others new to the point and click style will offer the positives to this game, so as a BS veteran, I'll stick to the negatives, that for me, far outweigh any positives, and make this the worst of the point and click style BS's by some distance. Another dip into 3D and another disappointment. This game was rushed out, probably a couple of months too early. The environments are large, empty, and few in numbers. Take the Vatican, Salami Factory and Turkish hotel locations - only two mute guards at the Vatican, two men at the factory, and only a "busy" receptionist and waiter in the hotel. They've just stuck in the bare mininum to get through the game, and it looks very poor and unrealistic - adventure games released 10 years ago gave more depth than this. And the cause is probably the 3D - that aspect means the locations *have* to be bigger, and take a *lot* more work to get right in terms of content. They just haven't done it. The player rewards are woeful. Take the final scenes. Without giving away any spoilers, the ending is possibly the worst ending to any game I have ever played, and even if you fail to save the day you don't even get a cutscene showing what terrible events occur, just another 3 minute long loading screen and right back into the very last 'puzzle'. They couldn't even be bothered to put in a real enemy for you to be fighting against. The (often) lengthy conversations are poorly done - just the same frozen viewpoint of the two characters for minutes on end. Farenheit showed how a 3D game can keep lengthy conversations interesting. Revolution should stop worrying about trying to turn BS in a role playing game in 3D (which requires a ridiculous spec of graphics card - for nothing more than a Point and Click game with very average graphics that still runs slow for 90% of people!) with dodgy control, and get back to what made it so engaging in the first place - the art of storytelling and creating atmosphere. And they'll only manage that by going back to 2D. Full Review »