Video Game: Sherlock Holmes Versus Arsène Lupin
In 1905 French author Maurice Leblanc, a contemporary of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, introduced his audience to Arsène Lupin, Gentleman Thief extraordinaire, a character who would go on to have as much success and renown in the non-English speaking world as Doyle's own creation, detective Sherlock Holmes.Naturally, when you have the detective's Detective on one side of the channel, and the most gentlemanly of thieves on the other, crossovers are not just considered but inevitable. note Sherlock Holmes Versus Arsène Lupin, alternatively titled as Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis, the fourth game in Frogware's Adventure of Sherlock Holmes series has a premise that can be described in a single sentence: Arsène Lupin has come to England and has invited Sherlock Holmes to come out and play.
Sherlock Holmes Versus Arsène Lupin provide examples of the following tropes:
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: During a discussion with a resident of Buckingham Palace, Holmes lists off a long list of reasons to fear Lupin, noting his skill and fiendishness, ending with:Holmes: And furthermore, he is French!
- Continuity Nod: Both to the original canon, and the previous game, The Awakened. Watson is shown to still be suffering from the Bad Dreams that case brought on.
- Criminal Mind Games: The Game. Lupin leaves numerous clues at each crime scene that hint towards where he's going to strike next. Holmes notes that he must have been preparing his thefts for months, given the amount of preparation that has gone into laying the breadcrumbs. They're actually a distraction and not playing Lupin's game is the key to figuring out the real final heist.
- Did Do The Research: While investigating the art museum Lupin's promised to rob, you meet an artist named Horace Velmont who later turns out to have been Lupin in disguise. Those who've read the Arsène Lupin stories will already know that was one of his aliases.
- Edutainment Game: Not explicitly designed or marketed as one, but it's hard to escape the fact there's a lot of historical facts flying around in this game. 90% of the exhibits in every location, even the irrelevant ones, have at least some flavour text.
- Gentleman Thief: Lupin, the Ur-Example. He's clearly enjoying every minute of it, but there's no malice in what he's doing.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: The bookseller, Barnes, has gone somewhat insane as a consequence of translating the Tome of Eldritch Lore back in Sherlock Holmes The Awakened.
- Graceful Loser: When finally cornered by Holmes at his last target, Lupin's not the least bit upset at being outmaneuvered. He more or less tips his hat to Sherlock and heads home.
- Idiot Ball: Poor Watson does not have his best week. Wanting to avoid letting Holmes know the press is apparently on the scent of the thefts is understandable. When that same reporter's name is an blindingly obvious anagram of said thief's name? Ohh, Watson...
- Kansas City Shuffle: Lupin's last target is not Big Ben, but the Tower of London, a target he'd already "robbed" at the beginning of his crime spree.
- Lighter and Softer: Compared to the preceding game The Awakenednote and the sequelnote , this is a pretty light fare.
- Master of Disguise: Both Lupin and Holmes are shown to have a skilled knack at disguise.
- Nintendo Hard: The puzzels/hints that Lupin leaves behind can get ridiculously obscure.
- Not So Different: Parallels are drawn between Holmes and Lupin — both are well off, highly skilled gentlemen who do what they do mainly as a way to stave off bordeom.
- Patriotic Fervor: Commentary is made on the fact that Lupin embarrassing London is delighting the French to no end. They're probably just glad he's not stealing from them for a week.
- The Prankster: Lupin's method of thievery involves a good deal of this. For example, when stealing from the National Gallery, he doesn't just make off with his chosen canvas but also stops to take down and replace countless others with the garish paintings of a French artist. "What horrors!"
- Shout-Out: There's a statuette of Cthulhu sitting on a filing cabinet at 221B Baker Street, and the Necronomicon shows up in the reading room of the British Museum.
"Return! Return! Return from whence you went!"
- Holmes uses flash photography to stun a bat; the resulting photograph (which somehow appears instantly, like a Polaroid) shows the bat's shadow on the wall looking just like the Bat-Signal. When Holmes wonders what to do with the photo, someone suggests he give it to the camera's owner, Sergeant Wayne.
- One of the clues Lupin leaves for Holmes is a musical score for a song called "Return" by a quartet known as the Scarabs.
- Shown Their Work: For starters, just try looking at every single item in the art gallery.
- Significant Anagram: Piers U. Alenn. Although, come on, it's barely a spoiler.