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Low-Spoiler Hints for Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger

Welcome to my Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger hints page. (-: If you're new to my series of low-spoiler computer game walkthroughs, the idea is to point gamers towards things they might not have thought of in each game rather than divulging puzzle solutions or giving step-by-step instructions. There's not much point in playing an adventure game if you know the puzzle solutions in advance, and there's no point at all in investigating a threatening mystery like Stay Tuned For Danger's if you've already had the story spoiled for you.

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So these pages are as close to spoiler-free as possible while still providing some valuable Stay Tuned For Danger hints and game recommendations. If you are looking for the solution to a particular puzzle, I recommend UHS--due to their unique website setup you can only see one hint at a time, so you can get the answer to one pesky puzzle without ruining all the others for yourself. Here's the UHS link if you're interested. My site here focuses on exactly the things traditional walkthroughs don't: the non-critical bits of Stay Tuned For Danger, detours you can take, little things you can do to smooth the gameplay out for yourself, extra details you might miss if you did only what was strictly necessary to complete the game. If you want even fewer spoilers--you're considering whether to buy the game, for example, and want to know whether there's anything you're going to detest in it--please try my Nancy Drew Review page to find all the pertinant information in one convenient spoiler-free package.

Now, on with the game!

Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Hints and Tips
Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Walkthrough
Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Game Spoilers and Easter Eggs
Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Plot and Character Information
Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Word Puzzle Solutions
Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Cheats and Links
Backseat Game Designer: Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger Critique

Stay Tuned For Danger Hints and Tips

Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned For Danger is a modern PC adventure game in the popular Nancy Drew series. Like the other Nancy Drew games, Stay Tuned For Danger offers a simple 1st-person point-and-click interface with which to navigate a small gameworld, solving puzzles and interrogating suspects. This one is set on a soap opera TV set. These are relatively easy games, designed with young teens in mind, and Stay Tuned For Danger is very much plug and play. However, there are a number of things you may want to be aware of before beginning to play in order to get maximum enjoyment out of the game. Without spoiling anything:

Difficulty Setting: I've never seen a game with such an irrelevant difficulty setting as the Nancy Drew series has. There are no additional puzzles if you play on Senior Detective--the in-game hint system (i.e. Bess and George) is scaled back, and you have less time to complete timed challenges, and that's it. If you've played the game on one setting, there is no need to go back and play it again on the other. I might actually recommend going with Junior Detective for this game simply because the final timed challenge is a random trial-and-error puzzle and solving it swiftly can be an annoyance.

Savegames: Like other games in this series, Stay Tuned For Danger is well-constructed and does not suffer from serious bugs; in fact, the Nancy Drew games have a "second chance" feature that allows you to automatically replay any scene in which Nancy dies or fails at her mission, so you theoretically shouldn't need to worry about savegames at all. Though there are a few potentially critical glitches in some of the other Nancy Drew titles, I have not found any in Stay Tuned For Danger. It's impossible to lose this game other than becoming bored and quitting.

Time Management: There is a game clock in Stay Tuned for Danger, but it's very close to irrelevant-- the only effect the passage of time is capable of having on the game is that if you hang around in the studio until after six o'clock, the front door will be locked and Millie the propmaster will go home, so if you neglected to pick up a critical item from her room the first time you were in there, this is a laborious and boring way to get back in and pick it up. The other NPCs don't go home for the night until after you leave the building no matter what you do, so don't waste your time with this exercise trying to get into Lillian or Mattie's rooms--you'll have to advance the plot enough to gain nighttime entrance into the building to do that. If you haven't left anything critical in Millie's room, "day" and "night" are the only two time-states that matter in this game, and you can use the stairs in Mattie's house to switch between them.

Interrogation: You have a selection of different dialogue choices during most conversations with suspects in Stay Tuned For Danger, but in no case do your choices affect anything in the game. This is somewhat unfortunate (it would have been nice for the amount of information you decide to reveal to the suspects to affect their behavior), but it also means you really needn't waste your time reloading or replaying any conversations. You should, however, make an effort to exhaust every line of conversation with every character (except George and Ned, who are completely optional), both because it gives you more details so that you can figure the mystery out for yourself, and also because the act of conversing with an NPC often triggers an unrelated plot event to happen somewhere else in the game.

Movement: The movement controls in the Nancy Drew games are very inconsistent and often unintuitive--sometimes it is hard to see an exit to your left or right, because the cursor does not shift to show that you can turn that way unless it is resting in the precisely correct location (which is not always to the far margin of the screen where you'd expect it). The same cursor (a red magnifying glass) is also used for examining something, moving forwards, and sometimes (most confusingly) even turning and stepping forwards at once. The "u-turn" arrow will sometimes execute an about-face, and other times just back you up but leave you facing the same direction. It can be very disorienting. Luckily the area available to explore in each of these games is very small,so you can get used to the movement possibilities in each location quickly. The hallway connecting the dressing rooms and offices to the movie set is the most frustrating part (the trick is remembering that you can only rotate freely in a real room, not in a hallway, so whenever you reach a corner you can *only* turn towards the continuation of the hallway, not back towards where you came from.)

The Phone: Nancy can only use the phone in Mattie's house to call her own friends (Bess, George and Ned) and, later in the game, Dwayne. Unlike "Secrets Can Kill," none of the (many) other telephone numbers you find in the game work at all--you will just get a generic "this call could not be completed as dialed" message if you try to call any of them (Mattie's mother, Bill Pappas, Dwayne's bank, the police, etc.) However, though it's optional to talk to George and Ned, it seems to be necessary to call Bess and ask her about each of the NPCs at the studio-- although she doesn't actually tell you anything you need to know, the plot will not progress until you do.

Problem Spots: There is one point in Stay Tuned For Danger where you can save your game in an unwinnable position: if you don't have the correct tool in your possession, saving the game in Rick's dressing room after you've found it with the door ajar will result in Nancy's inevitable death. However, this is not as big a deal as unwinnable positions are in other games because of the "second chance" feature, which will automatically return you to safety outside the dressing room, where you can re-save your game and go out in search of the missing tool.

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