Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego - Treasures of Knowledge - Box

Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego - Treasures of Knowledge
Ages 8 - 12

I can't believe that there is anyone who hasn't played a Carmen Sandiego game. She has been around for more than 16 years and TLC knows how to make a game interesting enough for kids, and educational enough for parents to keep on buying it. There is careful attention to geographical accuracy, variety in puzzles and an effort to keep the graphic style fresh.

This is a new game with an old title, so TLC has added Treasures of Knowledge to the title to differentiate it from the older game. The game concept has changed since the original title and the graphics have been updated but it still is: follow the clues around the world.

Carmen is on a crime spree and this time she is stealing the treasures of the world. It is up to Jules, a smart Asian operative and Hawkins her clueless arrogant assistant to end this spree and capture the lady in red. There is a lot of sarcastic bantering between Carmen and Jules, who once worked with Carmen when she was part of the ADEPT corps, which adds to the interest. Carmen remains one step ahead of our ADEPT team and leads them around the world before the end game. You travel to Kenya, Cuba (yes Cuba), Japan, Russia, and Thailand, and that is just the beginning of the game. Each country presents a puzzle to solve before you can retrieve the stolen object. The Users Guideon the disk will give you hints for all of the puzzles listed under the country in which they occur.

The educational content in this product resides mainly in Jules' notebook which contains the text information about the countries. Will the kids read it? I have my doubts. The banal one-liners about the country that Jules is quick to offer can be aborted so you can cut to the chase. The expanded role of Carmen adds a spark to the game. With such a vivacious, rebellious heroine flitting around the game - I am surprised that young girls aren't dressing up in long red coats.

Editor Review 11/01

The game is not at all like the earlier one. The characters are different and they talk too much. You can't make them stop talking even when you have heard it before. They are regular chatter boxes.

In the last one you were the character that pursued Carmen. The only other characters were you and Carmen and the villains and people you met in the countries. In the old one you knew when you went to the right place. In this one you don't. In this one there are places you can't go until you solve certain puzzles. In the old one you only went to a country once. You found all the clues and left. In this one you have to keep going back and forth until you find all of the clues. In the old one you went to places in the world to find clues and also to talk to people to find out what the criminal looked like so you could get a warrant. The old one had no puzzles; also you were looking for the criminal, not what was stolen. I am not sure what the stolen treasures of knowledge are.

We didn't even finish one quest. The old one didn't have all the equipment, like the clue analyzers (which you weren't able to use at first) or clue safe or the encyclopedia. The encyclopedia was a help.

It is a really different game. It is fun but sometimes it is too hard and it gets frustrating. I think it is for ages ten and up. An eight year old couldn't play it. An eight year old probably wouldn't want to play it. I learned a lot about Japan and what Shinto shrines are. The video that came with the game was actually pretty good. It actually explained how to play the game. You need to watch the movie before you start playing. Now that I finally solved the first part I want to keep playing because I want to go to Russia.

Reviewed by #1 Snoopy

  • Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego - Treasures of Knowledge
  • © The Learning Company $24.00
  • Windows 95/98/Me/2000/XP Mac 8.6 to 9.1,OSX
  • To Order: http://www.amazon.com But make sure it is the new version