Rank 2: ‘Stay Tuned for Danger’

Lights, camera…falling klieg light? There’s some suspicious things going on at a daytime soap opera studio in spot two, and coincidentally game number two, “Stay Tuned for Danger.”

The next-to-top spot on my ranking list goes to this game for many reasons, one of which is that it was the first game I ever played.

I was at my cousin Nicole’s house when I was about six or seven years old, and she introduced me to the games! We set up shop in the computer room and spent most of the trip right there playing games.

I wasn’t quite aware of what we were really doing for a while, but I sure know that it was fun! Heck, I even remember getting scared a few times.

In the second installment of the series, Nancy flies to New York City after solving the murder case in Florida because a soap star is getting death threats.

Apparently, Nancy’s Aunt Eloise is renting out her New York apartment (Gee, an apartment in Florida AND New York City? On a librarian’s salary?) to Mattie Jenson, one of the stars of WWB Broadcasting’s “Light of Our Love” (I know, what a cliché soap opera title).

Anyway, Mattie invites Nancy to stay with her so she can do some investing. Rick Arlen, her costar, is the suave actor who is receiving the death threats; a broken watch, dead roses, and tainted chocolates are among the weird notes he’s received from the anonymous “B.T. Kaiser.” He’s too proud and famous to go to the police, though.

It’s up to Nancy to sneak around and see who could be behind these threats, and this is about the only game where we really get to SNOOP. I mean, we get to snoop in a a lot of games, but I LOVE this one because of the hardcore snooping.

Each character has a motive for threatening Rick, and games where everyone is a suspect are the best. As only the second game in the series, “Stay Tuned for Danger” has one of the best cast of characters; there’s a lot of them, which is a plus because we get to interrogate each one!

Mattie is the “America’s Sweetheart” type, seeming to be kind and well-grounded. Since she brought us onto the case, there’s no way she could be behind the threats.

However, she and Rick used to date until he dumped her for the show’s director, Lillian.

Lillian Weiss is the cranky, no nonsense director for “Light of Our Love.” Rick and her are no longer dating, and she definitely seems to resent that “ball of slime,” or whatever she calls him. Could she be trying to chase Rick off the set, permanently?

Speaking of “off the set,” the Rick supposedly wants to leave the daytime show, which has made producer William Pappas furious. He’s upset because if Rick leaves, the show may drop in ratings and eventually be cancelled. Is Papas using fear as a motivation for Rick to stay put?

We never see Pappas, as he maintains the stereotype of the “absent producer,” which makes the game seem all the more realistic.

He’s not the only one that Rick has upset, though. Dwayne Powers, Mattie’s agent, used to represent Rick as well. Of course, Mattie and Dwayne used to date as well, which is perhaps the reason why Rick left his agency.

Mattie and Dwayne have since broken up, but could Dwayne be jealous of she still has feelings for Rick? On top of that, Rick abandoned the guy that “discovered him.” Has Dwayne reached his breaking point?

Above all of these suspects is the awesomely eccentric prop master, Millie Strathorn. She’s a ditsy old lady who confuses the show for real life. She doesn’t like Rick’s character, and has submitted story lines that killed him off. Could she be trying to literally get rid of Rick for good?

Add those six characters plus the big security guard, Ralph, and you have yourself a full cast of crazy, divers characters. What makes it even better is the fact that it almost seems the like game is a soap opera itself.

We have break-ups, backstabbing, jealousy, craziness, and a terrible acting cut-away that makes me laugh every time. It’s extremely clever and very fun.

The pacing of the game is excellent and very believable. We have our suspects, then things keep getting more and more tense until the “dangerous” finale.

Rick’s threats start getting stranger too. It started with notes, then tainted chocolates, then a falling klieg light, and then an explosive surprise! Very realistic.

One of the biggest reasons why this game is excellent is the hardcore snooping. Each room and building requires scrutinizing sleuthing; nothing can be left unturned.

There are tons of clues everywhere, some cryptic and some obvious. It’s not until the very end of the game that we discover who the culprit is (or before that if you pay enough attention).

die rick
Another huge reason as to why I love this game so much is because there is not one chore. There’s no favors you have to do or dumb side-quests that need attending to before getting to snoop. We’re here for one reason: to find out who’s threatening Rick.

We do that by snooping, uncovering secrets, and exploring the studio and beyond. It’s fun and sometimes creepy exploring around, and sometimes it’s kind of scary because it feels like someone could jump out and murder you. The atmosphere is perfect.

Exploring at night is fun when we’re trying not be caught, and puzzles that reveal hidden sections of the studio are easy enough and lead to interesting discoveries.

Every time I play this game, I find something different, which makes me love it more. It’s an incredible game, and there is nothing that I don’t like about it.

There are a few chance bugs, like the ending puzzle and the possible absence of a needed tool, but it’s easily overlooked.

dressing room
“Stay Tuned for Danger” is 100 percent enjoyable, realistic, and fun. It’s a snooper’s dream, and the characters bring it to an even higher level.

Well, tomorrow I’ll reveal the “best” Nancy Drew game. If you’re really a super sleuth, though, you’ll be able to deduct which title it is.

Tune in tomorrow for the top spot!