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#23 Nancy Drew: Shadow at the Water’s Edge


Game Story

Nancy Drew®: Shadow at the Water’s Edge

Confront Terrifying Secrets in a Haunted Japanese Inn!

Traditional Japanese family ryokans (inns) are charming places, but a vengeful ghost is terrifying you and other unsuspecting guests. Is there a shadowy specter haunting the placid inn or is something far more sinister driving away business?

Meet Yumi Shimizu, the eldest girl in the family who has gone to the city to start a more modern life, as she blogs her way through fashion, food, and cuteness.


PLEASE NOTE: At Her Interactive, we are committed to sustainability practices focused on building a better world for future generations. Thus, we only offer digital versions of our strategy guides.


To purchase a strategy guide separately, please click here.

Game Features

  • Immerse yourself in Japanese culture by learning about origami, tea ceremonies, and calligraphy
  • Create custom anime-style characters for your in-game phone
  • Play fun mini-games such as pachinko and Sudoku
  • Choose from junior or senior detective difficulty levels


Available On








ESRB Rating:




10 to Adult



Retail Release October 19, 2010


Operating System:

Windows® XP/Vista/7

OS X: 10.5.8 Leopard/10.6.6 Snow Leopard/10.7 Lion/10.8 Mountain Lion or higher


Windows Minimum System Requirements:

  • 1 GHz or greater Pentium or equivalent class CPU
  • 256 MB of RAM
  • 1 GB or more of hard drive space
  • 32 MB DirectX 9.0 compatible video card
  • 16 bit DirectX compatible sound card
  • 24X CD-ROM drive
  • mouse and speakers


Mac Minimum System Requirements:

  • Intel processor
  • 512 MB RAM
  • 1.1 GB or more hard drive space
  • Intel GMA 950, ATI X1600, NVIDIA 7300 graphics card or better
  • Keyboard and mouse
  • Internet connection the first time the game is launched
  • This game will NOT run on PowerPC (G3/G4/G5) based Mac systems (PowerMac)

Game Assets

“Overall, though, Shadow at Water’s Edge has all the ingredients of another worthy entry to the well-respected series. “ ~Common Sense Media

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“This is probably one of the best Nancy Drew mysteries – and I have reviewed them all.“ ~Games 4 Women

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“Interesting Japanese theme. Opportunities to learn about aspects of Japanese culture including origami, calligraphy, rock gardens and Sudoku.“ ~Gamezebo

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Oct 11, 2015 by Andrew

I just beat this game and loved it no matter how scary it was. I played it with the lights off and a few times I fell out of my chair. It was worth falling out of my chair. No matter how many times I play it I still get scared. In other words, BUY THIS GAME!!!

Scariest ND Ever!

Apr 30, 2015 by Anna

This was the scariest ND I've ever done! Especially with one scene near the end. I literally ran out of the room when I saw it I was so scared!
Everything else is pretty. The mini-games are fun, but the puzzles take time, and are a bit boring.
Overall, scary but fun

Things That Go Bump In The Night

Apr 20, 2015 by Miri

Not for the faint of heart.

This is the scariest Nancy Drew game in the series (as of '15) Nancy is in Japan at a haunted ryokan. The Japanese culture in the game is great, the pachinko parlor, origami, making bento boxes.

But the puzzles.....*groan* Sudoku, nonograms, many horrible boring puzzles. That wire frame puzzle gives me a migraine. Good game if they had cut the puzzles by half if would be great. If it weren't for the puzzles it would be a 5 star success.

SCARIEST ND game to date!

Mar 27, 2015 by Katie

Im still recovering from this game. I barley finished it! If you are on the fence for any reason get this game!! It's fantastic!

Graphics 9/10: The graphics were amazing on this game! A few places were not the best but overall the characters and general graphics were gorgeous!

Setting and Music 10/10: The setting is perfect! The ryokan is beautiful and there are SO many places to explore in the game. It never got old! And the music is some of the best in any ND game! I even had to turn it off towards the end because it was freaking me out even more! Great job HER interactive!

Characters 9/10- Rentaro is HILARIOUS! He's definitely one of my new favorite characters. I absolutely loved his dialogue. The rest of the characters were well developed and had distinct personalties that made interacting with them so fun!
The phone conversations with Bess and George were great as usual and Savannah was hilarious was well!

Plot 10/10- So spooky! This game made me scream out loud at least twice. One part made me throw my laptop and run out of the room!! I never thought there would be a game to top blackmoore manor but this one just edged it out as the scariest ND game. The plot is engaging and I never once got bored with it! If you are a lover of scary games then this is for you!

Puzzles 6/10: This is one of the few cons I have about this game. The puzzles were so hard! And I'm a lover of challenging puzzles that take me a while to get but at times it was just ridiculous. A lot of the puzzles in this game made me want to bang my head against the wall and just quit all together (I'm looking at you bento boxes and freakishly huge sudoku puzzle). I had to use a walkthrough for 60% of the puzzles in the game.

Conclusion 6/10- My only other con about the game. I felt let down by the ending. After all that it was not at all like I was expecting. Definitely not the usual ND ending thats all I'll say about that.

Average 8/10

AMAZING game! Thrilling, spooky, exciting the whole way through. Definitely one you don't want to miss!

Happy playing!

Beware the dreaded frame

Feb 18, 2015 by Angela

That frame puzzle was probably one of the most frustrating puzzles ever. At one point I had spent so much time on it, I just started picking up random points and moving them to wherever, hoping to get lucky. That being said, this game ranks up there with one of the best ND games! I loved that you got a book of puzzles to solve (and one of them was Sudoku.. my fave!). The characters were well done (the dialogue with Rentaro alone was hilarious). This game had all the elements: comedy, drama, mystery, adventure, and horror (not many games can give me a good scare.. kudos Her Interactive), all put together to make one awesome ND game.

This is why I LOVE these games.

Oct 27, 2014 by jk

So first off, this one delivers the fear factor. It was eerie, and I LOVED it!! Oh my goodness, couldn't have the lights off when I played this. It included a lot of here and there places to explore and sleuth in which I loved. The plot was so interesting, puzzles were difficult but really good, and I loved all the history of where Nancy Drew is in this game. It really is amazing how I can learn so much in a Nancy Drew game. So cool. This game kept me thinking, wondering, and looking behind my shoulder a lot! Thank you ND! Awesome game. 10/10!!!

Scary but fun!

Oct 11, 2014 by Kathleen

This is probably my favorite Nancy Drew game. It's extremely creeply and left my heart pounding more than once! The culture aspect of it is interesting to explore, and the puzzles are fairly difficult. I would recommend this to anyone who loves Nancy Drew (so long as you're not spooked too easily!)

Thrilling, Spooky & Fun!

Oct 06, 2014 by Nicole

Shadow at the Waters Edge is, in my opinion, the scariest Nancy Drew Game to date. Not only does it send the shivers down your spine, but the Japanese setting immerses you in the culture. The puzzles are challenging and fun, and the characters in turn are tough to crack.
There is something wonderfully haunting about this game, and I highly recommend it for anyone looking a scary Nancy Drew game.

Shadow At Water's Edge

Oct 06, 2014 by Denise Rulason

Nancy Drew: Shadow at Water's Edge is an entertaining, fun, and spooky game. I enjoyed the story line and collecting the cellphone charms! Learning about Japanese culture, their traditions, food, and everyday living opened my eyes in an unexpecting, wonderful way. I would recommend this game for anyone new to Nancy Drew -or experienced with the series!!


Oct 05, 2014 by Haley

This is one of my favorite games, and as a Nancy drew Veteran player I can honestly say it's also one of the scariest for me! I absolutely love playing it with friends and we spend hours just on bento boxes! Highly recommended!

4.8 5.0 58 58 I just beat this game and loved it no matter how scary it was. I played it with the lights off and a few times I fell out of my chair. It was worth falling out of my chair. No matt Nancy Drew: Shadow at the Water's Edge

Miwako Shimizu

Miwako takes the ryokan very seriously and helps out by running the front desk and virtually everything else. But as the youngest daughter, she, according to tradition, can’t inherit the inn. Is the ghost just a ploy she’s using to help subvert an ancestral custom?


Nancy Drew Character: Miwako



Yumi Shimizu

As the first daughter, Yumi is the rightful heir to the ryokan. She’s chosen to forego this responsibility for a fast-paced city life, much to the disapproval of her family. Are the hauntings merely a scheme to close down the ryokan and prevent her from having to leave her urban lifestyle?


Nancy Drew Character: Yumi



Rentaro Aihara

As a loveable goofball, Rentaro spends most of his time in his shed building or tinkering with the latest technology. That is, when he’s not doting on his girlfriend, Miwako. He dreams of moving with Miwako to the city. A few staged scares could help convince her, but would this quirky technophile destroy a family and their business in the name of love?


Nancy Drew Character: Rentaro



Takae Nagai

Having grown up and lived in the ryokan her whole life, Takae has seen many things happen there, including the accidental death of her daughter. Still, she insists on following tradition, even if it’s against both of her granddaughter’s wishes. As an expert on Japanese culture, is she using the Yurei legend to help get her way?


Nancy Drew Character: Takae

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