Rank 24: ‘Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake’

Spot 24 on my list goes to one of the early games, “Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake.” The seventh game in the series followed some really good predecessors, but I think think this title fell flat a bit.

Nancy takes a trip to Moon Lake in Pennsylvania because her friend, Sally, is experiencing some strange attacks. From the title, it’s easy to figure out that her house is being attacked by ghost dogs.

Once Nancy arrives, she finds that Sally fled from the house that very night out of sheer terror that she’d be attacked again. Right after that, Nancy hears some strange howling (and some weird bird noises from Red Knott – we’ll get to him in a minute) then finally sees the dogs.

It’s a little bit creepy how loud the dogs are as they’re viciously barking and hurling themselves at the house. But, what would make dogs act like this? Boom: Nancy’s on the case.

It turns out that this house once belonged to a gangster from Prohibition times, Mickey Malone. Here’s the kicker: he owned four dogs! Well, we have a lot to go off of now. Let’s just see what the other people around have to say.

And that’s when the game turns sour. There’s only three characters to talk to in person: the boring park ranger, cooky shop owner Emily, and creepy bird watcher Red. They’re all pretty weird and kind of boring, and they all have dumb tasks for you.

The rest of the characters you talk to are over the phone, and there are some LONG phone conversations.

Honestly, this isn’t a bad game. It may seem like Nancy is isolated with not much going on, but I think that the feel of the game is fantastic. It always feels like someone is following you and that they’re going to murder you. That’s impressive, to me anyway. And some parts of the game are genuinely tense and creepy.

Unfortunately, that’s not enough to rank this game any higher. There is a lot of time spent walking around looking for something to do next (when you’re not on some annoying quest by Red or Park Ranger Akers).

The feel, like I said, is great. But it’s also very, very easy to feel bored.

It seems like the best character is Malone, and he’s been dead for decades. Uncovering the different locations and learning about his life and the dogs is fun.

But, let’s be honest, the whole game kind of drags on. The worst part is that we barely see the dogs throughout the entire game.

So, “Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake” has a great feel, an interesting plot, and some fun moments. Other than that, it gets stale really quickly due to the lack of characters and dumb tasks.

There you have it. Tune in tomorrow to see which game takes the next spot!



  1. When I played this one as a kid it was a total favorite. In comparison to some of the later games, it loses some ranking for me. But I still think the history and the natural setting are really nice. Don’t remember much about the puzzles, which are now my favorite part of these games.

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  2. Pingback: Complete Ranking List from Worst-to-Best | The Senior Detective Blog

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