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Criminal Case

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Criminal Case
App Icon (3)
Developer(s) Pretty Simple
Publisher(s) Pretty Simple
Platform(s) Facebook (Adobe Flash), iOS, Android
Release date(s) Facebook:
November 15, 2012
August 28, 2014
April 15, 2015
Genre(s) Puzzle
Language(s) English · French · German · Indonesian · Italian · Japanese · Korean · Portuguese · Russian · Spanish · Traditional Chinese · Turkish
Monthly users 5,000,000↑
Location(s) Concordia
Pacific Bay
Rest of the world
Join the Police of Grimsborough to solve a series of cases in this captivating hidden object, adventure game. Work crime scenes for clues, interview witnesses and suspects, and carefully analyze evidence to catch the true killers.

Criminal Case (frequently abbreviated to "CC") is a detective-themed hidden object game released on November 15, 2012 for Facebook. An iOS version was released worldwide on August 28, 2014, followed by an Android version on April 15, 2015. Developed and published by French indie studio Pretty Simple, Criminal Case has over five million average monthly users. 

Criminal Case has been one of the most popular and addictive Facebook games ever since the start of 2013 and also has been highly competitive with Candy Crush Saga, the most popular game on Facebook with over 46 million average monthly users. On December 9, 2013, Criminal Case was crowned the Facebook Game of the Year 2013.[2]


In Criminal Case, the player acts as a detective to solve murders and progress through the cases.

Example CS

Crime scene investigation is a key gameplay feature in Criminal Case.

The player must locate relevant clues at crime scenes by clicking items in the scene. Greater scores are awarded for finishing the scene quickly; the player earns stars that can later be used as a type of currency for performing necessary tasks such as examining evidence and questioning suspects. During this process, the player will also have to come across necessary autopsies and analyses that may take a few real-life hours to complete. Furthermore, as the player progresses through each case, they acquire clues as to who the victim was, how they were killed, and what relation they had with the case's suspects.

At the conclusion of the case, the player is presented with all the suspects and must arrest the one who fulfills each of the criteria gained throughout the investigation. If the decision is correct, the case is solved and the next one can then be unlocked—though past cases may additionally be revisited (and also replayed) at any time to grind for rewards. To unlock the next case, a silver medal is first required, which can be earned by completing the solved case's post-indictment chapter. The silver medal enables the player to receive reports and thus move on to the succeeding case. This process, however, varies in the early few cases.

5. Reveal

A forensic mini-game in progress.

While investigating cases, the player must also go through a variety of puzzle elements, such as puzzle-style hidden object scenes that must be unscrambled and few simple click-and-drag activities to break up the player's routine, like shuffling through garbage or clothes.

Other gameplay features include: customizing the player avatar; purchasing police pets for extra rewards, such as boosting up the final score of a crime scene; utilizing special power-ups such as boosters and snacks; and obtaining collectibles such as lucky cards and trophies.

There are also various progression features integrated into the game, the most noteworthy ones being levels and ranks.

Like many other Facebook games, Criminal Case incorporates an energy system, which is used to engage in crime scene investigations.

The game is primarily a single-player affair, but it does involve a number of social features. Each crime scene has a leaderboard, for example, and the player may choose a "partner" from their list of "teammates" (friends who also play Criminal Case and are "recruited" to the player's team) to join the investigation of each scene and provide hint bonuses. Teammates mainly help to accumulate a higher amount of energy points—allowing a faster progression.



The player first investigates in the fictional city of Grimsborough, which is heavily based on New York City. Grimsborough consists of six districts: Industrial Area, Financial Center, Historical Center, University, Maple Heights, and Airport.

The player later travels to investigate in Pacific Bay, a fictional city primarily based on Los Angeles, California. Pacific Bay is divided into ten districts: Ocean ShoreBayou Bleu, Inner City, Jazz Town, White Peaks, Ivywood Hills, Rhine Canyon, Innovation Valley, Paradise City, and The Wastes.

Eventually, the player is assigned to solve crimes in different parts of the world—in real-world continents and regions, specifically Europe, Sahara Region, Eurasia, South Asia, East Asia, Oceania, Africa, South America, and North America.

The player is then required to investigate murders in the late 19th century, done strictly via visual storytelling, across the fictional Victorian city of Concordia. The city, based in the United States, is composed of ten districts.


Main article: Characters

Characters play a key role in Criminal Case. They may or may not have a serious impact in the game, and are classified into the following categories:


The game begins when the silent protagonist—a rookie cop whose basic identity corresponds to the player's specified name and gender—is shown pursuing a career with the Grimsborough Police Department, a law enforcement agency in the city of Grimsborough. Partnered with David Jones, the protagonist is soon proved to be auspiciously talented, defying obstacles like ruthless murderers, serial killers, and notorious organizations, even catching the mayor's attention in the process.

After solving a total of fifty-six cases across Grimsborough, the protagonist succeeds in bringing peace back to the city. Knowing that crime rates in Grimsborough are likely going to reach all-time lows, the protagonist accepts a position in the Pacific Bay Police Department, but not without accepting a farewell party from fellow Grimsborough PD officers as a commemoration of the memories and respect the protagonist earned.

Leaving Grimsborough, the protagonist steps foot in the city of Pacific Bay. Now assigned with Amy Young and Frank Knight in the Pacific Bay PD, the protagonist unfolds crimes even more sinister than the ones in Grimsborough, only to know that a mad scientist is behind the scenes of the high crime rates in Pacific Bay. With great difficulty, the protagonist eventually restores peace back to the city. After the Chief of Police states that Pacific Bay has to start anew with lower crime rates, Jack Archer—elite force agent of The Bureau—offers the protagonist a job at said international police force, which also happens to be the world's top agency.

The protagonist accepts, and so, after having proven their worth in Pacific Bay by solving an enormous amount of fifty-nine cases, the protagonist is declared fit to investigate crimes all over the globe to continue their determined fight with crime. The protagonist gets partnered not only with Jack, but also Carmen Martinez and eventually Michelle Zuria, in order to solve various crimes and fight against a global crime organization called SOMBRA. After chasing them all over the globe, the Bureau is finally able to bring SOMBRA down, but not without the sacrifice of Armand Dupont, who, on his deathbed, entrusts his great-grandfather's notebook to the protagonist.

As Jack reads the adventures laid out in the notebook, the protagonist is immersed in the story of the 19th century city of Concordia, where the Concordian Flying Squad operates. The protagonist gets partnered with Maddie O'Malley and Isaac Bontemps as they uncover crimes all over the city.



Criminal Case was named 2013's Facebook Game of the Year.

As of mid-2013, Criminal Case attracted more than ten million monthly users and became highly competitive with Candy Crush Saga, the most popular game on Facebook.

On December 9, 2013, Criminal Case won the Facebook Game of the Year 2013 award.[3]

The game has a 40-percent share of Facebook users.[4]

Some reasons cited for the game's success include its graphic crime scenes and meaningful narratives.[5]

On July 15, 2014, the game's official Facebook app page reached a milestone of 50 million "likes".

Criminal Case: Pacific Bay

On January 16, 2017, Pretty Simple launched Criminal Case: Pacific Bay, made available on Facebook and mobile devices as an independent app featuring all of the Pacific Bay cases existing in the original game, as well as an exclusive introductory case named Welcome to Pacific Bay. Other noticeable in-game differences include a tweaked color scheme and design, updated audio, and a number of new customization options for the player avatar.

The app was officially released worldwide on February 15, 2017.


See also


  1. "About Criminal Case". Facebook. Retrieved October 24, 2014.
  2. Tach, Dave (December 9, 2013). "Facebook crowns Criminal Case the top game of 2013". Polygon. Retrieved February 23, 2014.
  3. Glasser, AJ (December 9, 2013). "Facebook Games of the Year 2013". Facebook. Retrieved February 23, 2014.
  4. MacGuill, Dan (December 10, 2013). "Made in France 'Criminal Case' conquers Facebook". The Local. Retrieved February 23, 2014.
  5. "Criminal Case - Facebook Showcase Blog". Facebook. Retrieved February 23, 2014.

External links


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