Spirits of Mystery: Amber Maiden Collector's Edition
Fun Times in Fantasy
I had lots of fun playing this game. I enjoyed the HO and all the games. Lots of hints and good story line. Not too hard!
March 23, 2012
I love this game. Visual is nicely done and the background music compliments every scenes. As an artist, I have to be visually captured first. And only then will I continue previewing the game.
May 21, 2013
Starts out sad
...but ends up happy.
I only wish we got to see Granny again at the end.
Still, that shouldn't prevent anyone from playing this.
October 28, 2012
HOS a LOT!!! Gorgeous Graphics, Lots o' Fantasy Fun!
Based on Completed Game in Export Mode (the 2nd of 2 modes).
These games are becoming so beautifully put together I Think us gamers might be getting spoiled!!!!! Remember "Zork"? How things have evolved....
Summary: I recommend this game for those who love HOS and fantasy fairy tale lands as this game is superbly done and delivers on all counts.
I would not recommend this game for those who tire of rapid fire HOS, especially if it comes at the expense of puzzles and adventure.
-----------Having said that --
HOS lovers, this is the game for you! Nary is a move made that doesn't first require completing a HOS. If a few minutes pass and no HOS is seen, just move to the next room.....
There are shimmers indicating HOS in Expert Mode which I appreciate! Thank you! :) It's no fun backtracking, clicking on everything to find the one nook with a HOS that I missed the first 5 passes. That's not adventure - it's tedium and aggravation. I can get these at work!
About the HOS; they are somewhat interactive with 2 or 3 items showing in YELLOW that require an action to reveal them or do something to change them - Some of these were cleverly done and made me laugh.
Also a nice touch, items removed during a HOS did not return the next time that HOS became active. The HOS are a blend of easy to more challenging. The flawless graphics allow many an item to successfully hide in plain sight. Yes, I had to use hints several times. sigh.
About the mini-games; despite being easy and puzzles we have seen before in other games, they were beautiful, creative, and cleverly executed which made them fun. My personal fav is the "One Octopus Band". Extremely cute and funny.
The bummer for me was that the puzzles seemed to get easier as the game progressed. In the final chapter there were few puzzles and those seemed tacked on, requiring only a couple of mouse clicks to solve.
About the storyline; It's a bit of what we have seen before -Witch curses a kingdom, when the daughter comes of age she must break the curse, but with a very nice twist at the end.
There are clues so the ending isn't necessarily a complete surprise, but still I thoroughly enjoyed it-- well executed and heart warming. It was a far cry from games that, after playing them for hours to reach the climax, roll the credits 3 seconds after the final move.
There is a journal that I used for reference only a couple of times, but it is detailed and as with the rest of the game very well done. It does give some hints.
No need for a map which is good, because there isn't one. The game closes off areas from previous chapters.
As always, I longed for an "area complete", but there were none. It would have come in handy as this game has a lot of rooms and scenes in each chapter. A number of them serve only one or maybe two purposes or are just pass-through.
With a couple of exceptions, the completed puzzles areas were closed off, but all else left wide open.
I did find that, the way the game is structured - constantly moving forward, the only backtracking necessary was when I had overlooked something and this happened a couple of times.
Maybe completed areas were open to allow gamers to revisit favorite areas?
All this praise, so why not give it 5 stars?
Well, I fall more into the camp of HOS are nice in doses when mixed with adventure and more challenging mini-games.
I felt "HOS Overload" mid-way through the game and the last chapter didn't help. It seemed clogged with HOS like weeds choking out the mini-games and adventure.
Still, it was worth sticking to it for that nice "pop" ending.
HOS Lovers of the world, enjoy!
November 4, 2012
Solid, though not spectacular.
I probably would have liked this game better, in all fairness, if I had not played Song of the Phoenix right before it; Amber Maiden pales in comparison. That being said, I don't regret buying it or playing it, and I still enjoyed the game (especially the ending, which was cool); it's not the best Hidden Object game I've played on this site, but not the worst, either. Ultimately, I liked the concept of the witch encasing people in amber, and those people or objects needing whatever "makes them complete" in order to break the spell.
July 13, 2012
Great game but too short
I love the 'Song of Phoenix' so I also bought this one, but unfortunately for a CE, it's too short. I finished this game in about 4 hours including the bonus chapter. There are lots of HOG scenes and they're all junk. The story is great but too bad because of the short length, it doesn't seem complete. Hopefully if there's another one in the series, it will have adequate length.
November 11, 2012
Pros: Easy game played in regular mode. Lots of clear, easily viewable HOS as well as a variety of easy level puzzles. Lot of movement back and forth between areas. A map to refer to would have been appreciated. Decent story line-could, have been more fully developed.
Cons: The spoken voice overs were exceptionally slow. You could read the text three times over, before you were given the prompt to "Continue". Unfortunately, no amount of clicking would advance the printed text until the prompt to "Continue" was given.
The time delay between clicking to move to the next area was agonizingly slow.
If the negatives aren't issues for you, go ahead and purchase now. Otherwise, I'd suggest you wait and catch this on sale before you purchase it.
October 14, 2012
Fun but not Fantastic
I did play the second one first which might be affecting this but I'll never know. I felt that their were a tad more HOS than there were puzzles but not so much so that it's a real complaint about the game. I love ERS and this was a good starting game for the series. The SG was useful just for the simple fact that the hint button took much longer to reload than in this game's sequel. I did however enjoy the bonus chapter but that was just me. The graphics and sound were good and the puzzles none too difficult. I recommend that you play this game before Song of the Phoenix so you can appreciate it more but I do recommend it none the less.
July 17, 2012
A Strong Opening to the SoM Series
This is the first game in the Spirits of Mystery series and a strong opening in more ways than one. While the story line is nothing truly special (a princess destined to free her parents and kingdom from evil), the voice acting is competent and the pacing is fairly smooth. There is a great balance of hidden object scenes and inventory usage. I found both the HoSs to be fairly complex and the puzzles to be of average challenge (a few of them could have been a lot more complicated, but seemed to almost solve themselves).
As in most of these games, the ending was rather underwhelming, but the length of the game was good (about 5 hours without skips or hints) and the bonus chapter (while I was wishing for a prequel), does a decent job at genuinely extending the story and game play, making the CE a good buy in this case. There are no achievements and the extras are your usual wallpaper, music, screensaver, etc.
Like I mentioned, an overall strong opening for the series and I look forward to playing the others.
July 9, 2014
I enjoyed playing this game. Length is regular HOPA length. Story is nice, if not a little predictable (I?m talking about you, Dark Queen!), but that did not stop me from liking it.
While you had to trail back, from time to time, it was always logical. You did not have to go back to an area where everything was solved, for another HOG scene. (A pet peeve of mine, with some other games.)
Puzzles were quite easy, besides the last one (from the bonus game).
January 2, 2013