The Room 4: Old Sins 2021: Review
February 11th, 2021
Explore a deviously complex dollhouse that transforms at your fingertips. Each intricate room is a portal to a new, stunning environment.
Easy to begin yet hard to put down, enjoy a unique mix of intriguing puzzles with a simple user interface.
A tactile experience so natural you can almost feel the surface of each object.
Examine dozens of detailed objects to discover which of them conceal hidden mechanisms.
A haunting soundtrack coupled with dynamic sound effects creates an unforgettable soundscape.
Share your progress between multiple devices and unlock achievements.
Available in English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Turkish and Russian.
The Room 4: Old Sins features a strange multi-room dollhouse to explore, as well as the same engaging puzzle gameplay as its predecessors set against a tragic story. Fireproof Games has re-built, re-textured, and re-lit every shiny object and the ambient scene in the game to entice players further into the mysterious realm of The Room, a significant visual enhancement from the mobile edition.
The Room 4: Old Sins is about the mysterious disappearance of an ambitious engineer and his high-society wife, which leads to a search for a valuable artifact. The trail goes to their attic, where they discover an old, strange dollhouse… Uncover the mysteries of Waldegrave Manor by visiting strange locations, following cryptic clues, and manipulating strange contraptions.
The Room 4: Old Sins comes to PC two years after it was released on mobile, finishing with graphical updates. We’re big fans of these small indie puzzlers, and we breezed through this series, so we were eager to try this one out.
What drew us to The Room 4: Old Sins was the fact that it was, in some ways, a return to form for the series. The Room 3 was a significant change from the previous two games in terms of scale, with puzzles spanning numerous rooms and multiple endings, among other things. It veered away from what made the first two so good — finely crafted puzzles with limited area. The Room 4: Old Sins takes a step back, keeping the room-spanning puzzles but not going as far as the third game.
The puzzles are smaller, requiring less movement and not spreading the solution out in a monotonous manner (although it does do this a bit towards the end). Overall, the Room 4: Old Sins game does a fantastic job of pacing, not getting you trapped on one puzzle or mechanic for too long, and keeping things fresh by seamlessly switching between all of these distinct puzzle styles. It can get fairly inventive at times, which is one of the things we enjoy about this series.
The difficulty is comparable to the third game, which was, to say the least, disappointing. It’s a lot easier than the first two, and it gives you a lot of help by giving you hints outside of the “hints” feature. For example, you might try to put something somewhere only to be informed, “No, it doesn’t go there, and maybe something in the room can tell you where to put it.”
The Room 4: Old Sins took us just over three hours to complete, whereas the third took us two hours but we didn’t get all of the alternate endings, and the first two took us three and four hours, respectively. It’s kind of in the middle there, which isn’t necessarily a negative thing given the amazing sense of rhythm. It’s worth noting that there isn’t much replayability because the game lacks the multiple endings that the third had. On paper, the concept of multiple endings sounds great, but we actually prefer this approach if it can bring the experience closer to the original.
There is a story element in The Room 4: Old Sins, in addition to the gameplay. It’s mostly narrated through journal entries and letters found while playing, so it’s not too complicated. In fact, you can play this game as your first in the series and be perfectly fine – the story is just a bonus for those who are interested in the lore. It’s not as prominent as it was in the third game, but there’s still a lot to dissect here for those who want to go deeper — we didn’t care for it.
The Room 4: Old Sins does not appear to be any different from the previous installments in the series, which were all excellent, so no major changes are required. If anything, it’s a vast improvement over the mobile game. The same may be stated regarding the music and sound design. The one is as good as it has ever been, but the latter is virtually non-existent. For the most part, the game uses ambiance instead of music, which may sound unpleasant at first but actually adds to the atmosphere when the sound design takes center stage.