‘Peaky Blinders: Mastermind’ review: Odd but enjoyable

The addictive and highly inventive puzzle-adventure game from Curve Digital – Peaky Blinders: Mastermind – was released on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC on 20 August 2020.

Join the Shelby family’s criminal organisation and unearth a sinister plot to put Tommy out of business. Here’s what you need to know.

Peaky Blinders: Mastermind

Tommy Shelby gets his moment to shine as the true leader of Peaky Blinders in early 20th century Birmingham. Join the fun by utilising Tommy’s prowess for planning to set up and execute complex scenarios.

Peaky Blinders Mastermind
Image supplied

It’s the first-ever video-game based on the acclaimed TV series Peaky Blinders, which is currently one of the most popular dramas on TV. Be warned, it’s quite fun and a little bit addictive.

In Peaky Blinders: Mastermind, Tommy Shelby and his gang seek to take control of the streets of Birmingham in the early 20th century. The events of the game preceded the first season of the TV show.

Curve Digital developed the game in collaboration with FuturLab and Caryn Mandabach Productions.

Peaky Blinders: Mastermind gameplay

I had the opportunity to play around with a retail build of the game before its release. There are 10 missions in total that will take you between four and six hours to complete in a one-sitting playthrough.

The missions consist of a series of objectives that must be completed within a specific time limit. Visually, it is definitely reminiscent of the TV series, which I’ll admit, I only watch a little bit of before playing Mastermind.

Peaky Blinders: Mastermind will allow players to rewind each character’s path in order to tune all of their actions for perfect coordination, tactically utilising characters and stealth to solve increasingly complex puzzles. 

That makes it easier, but perhaps at times too easy? The rewind feature is nifty and easy enough to use when you’ve reached a level where you can’t progress any further. If you take a wrong step, just go back.

While that is extremely useful, it’s just… too easy. No resources are used for rewinding, and there are no penalties either.

Peaky Blinders: Mastermind trailer

Other than that, it was quite fun and a little bit addictive. Word of advice, it might seem at the start that the game is moving too slow. Don’t give up just yet and keep going; it speeds up soon enough.

The game takes a turn around Mission 7 or 8 Tommy’s First World War memories come into play; it changes the dynamic and forces you to play differently. The change in pace was nice.

You’ll need to put on your thinking cap for this one as you set out strategies and take control of key members of the Shelby family.

Peaky Blinders Mastermind
Image supplied

Peaky Blinders production

Simon Byron from Curve Digital hopes that the game resonates with fans, while Peaky Blinders’ executive producer at Caryn Mandabach Productions, Jamie Glazebrook, is “thrilled beyond measure”.

He says that James and the FuturLab team “found an ingenious way to take the DNA of Peaky Blinders and turn it into an utterly compelling game”.

“I’m thrilled beyond measure that both fans of the show and players new to our world will finally be able to experience it for themselves”.

Peaky Blinders Mastermind
Image supplied

FutereLab founder James Marsden explains that the games concept “came down to a simple idea at the heart of the show: The Soldier’s Minute; where everything in a battle can be decided”. Marsden adds:

“This idea inspired us to offer the player an opportunity to feel as smart and powerful as Tommy Shelby, coordinating all the Peaky Blinders to pull off daring acts in perfect sync”.

Peaky Blinders Mastermind
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