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It's just a point-and-click adventure, but I was glued to it. Few elements are exceptional in themselves, but I was really impressed with the combination of dual narrative, a believable female protagonist, the consistent atmosphere, the methodical investigation, and that scene! I've seen more graphic scenes in many other games, but I haven't seen such a brutal one in a long time.

Did anyone else get a nice surprise out of this game?
I agree. It's definitely one of my favorite. I own the Xbox and PC retail versions as well and had recently played through it again around 5 months ago. When I purchased it on GOG, I only had the intent to install it and play through a little of it to test it since I had just recently replayed it. The game sucks me in every time I boot it up and I ended up completing it again.

This is one of those games that has great potential in attracting casual or non-gaming females as well. My wife rarely plays games and was watching me play the Xbox version back when it was new. She became glued to the point where I relinquished the controller to her and she started a new game and completed it.

I never understood the backlash it got over the cookie baking puzzle. From an adventure game design standpoint I always felt it was a solid puzzle and fit well considering the storyline and female protagonist. It was perfectly believable that a visiting daughter over the holidays might bake her dad some of grandmother's holiday cookies - perfect chance for a puzzle. Even with a limited knowledge of cooking, the solution shouldn't take but a few tries with a little deductive reasoning. I always felt the Ackerman studio lock picking was the most time consuming of the game's puzzles.
I agree, this is a gem of an adventure game, and I have played a ton of them since the late 80's :-)
I actually played this game for the first time on the original xbox

eventually i got the GoG version and loving it even more :)
i agree with you guys, really good story which drags you in and keeps you playing thru to the ending.

That lockpicking puzzle tho - even with the walkthrough took me a few attempts to get past!