! > Some examples would be nice but I get if you don't want to go into a long rant. The Kazuma's segment of "i went aboard to kill but not really but I slashed him but didn't kill and left because of honour but I still went anyway" was one that bugged me.
! In the last case mostly. Other than what you mentioned, the fact that Stronghart was perfectly blackmailing and coercing everyone on an international assassination scale, with everyone perfectly going along with everything. It was ridiculous to me that clearly Stronghart is the one with the most to lose; in fact he was going to ABSURD levels to cover up traces of a 10-year-old case out of paranoia just in case it MAYBE bit him in the ass for his super important promotion that he murdered his way to. But no, he's the one able to get other people to do his dirty work lol. And after everything people still agreeing with Stronghart and chanting his name. And of course all the Sholmes crap I mentioned.
! > It wasn't a plot device as much as an necessity though because Mael had so much power and public influence that it requires authoritarian approach and a clear, solid breakdown of what he has done and a confession to actually be able to charge him.
It was politics because the queen can't just jail him as he has much influence and impact on the current law (arguably more peaceful) in London. That, and it was likely she knew long ago (evidence by how Holmes easily stroll into her garden) but her hands were tied. Holmes was as much a pawn to her as she was to him, which was why I thought it was well written. The live streaming was necessary but the hologram? That was completely unnecessary and was just for fun and was just Holmes dancing on the grave of Mael.
! It's terrible writing. "We couldn't find a reasonable and satisfying way to pin down the mastermind other than using magical technology beamed directly to the Queen." It's absurd and unsatisfying on every level. I also disagree with most of your conjecture.
! > I think its the same reason why van Kiek's brother wanted to keep his affair with Iris mother a secret, to protect them from Stronghart. Any leaks of a surviving member of the professor could not only lead to the society ostracizing Iris + the ugly truth that the notorious killer came from a noble family + Stronghart tying any loose ends by silencing her. It is also of course for Iris's own sake but there's like three layers to that too.
! The reason stated for Klint was that he didn't want his daughter to grow up being shunned as the disgraced child of a serial nobility-killer. It was never implied to have anything to do with retribution from Stronghart, which he would have no need for as she was literally unborn at the time. And the reasonable thing to do would be to just warn all parties involved, even without revealing all the details but in an open way. Sholmes could have done it. Yujin could have done it, if not before then AFTER recalling his daughter. It's just endlessly stupid.
Thinking about it, part of what helps the original trilogy avoid coming off as overly absurd or unbelievable is that a lot of it was rooted in supernatural elements existing, which automatically open the door for rather crazy or otherwise impossible situations. That kind of insanity doesn't really work in a game rooted in a far more serious and historically-accurate context.
Braid: Definitely a brainteaser of a game, though it's kind of annoying how the rules seem to constantly change and they're not always obvious. Had to look up a few of the solutions. Still, very creative.
It's been a really long time since I played Braid, but I never felt the rules were confusing or inconsistent. It slowly introduces layers of complexity to the mechanics and it's awesome to discover the extent to which they can be used. I had to look up a couple of the secrets, because sometimes they are REALLY well-hidden and/or you can lock yourself out of them, but otherwise it was excellent IMO. Especially compared to The Witness, which I think got extremely circle-jerky.