Spirits of Mystery: Song of the Phoenix
Too many puzzles, not enough HOS!
I bought this game because so many people gave it 5 stars. However, if your favorite type of game is hidden object this is not the game for you. There are WAY too many mini-puzzles and very few HOS. The puzzles vary in difficulty from very easy to borderline ridiculous. And some of the most difficult did not have a reset button (although other puzzles did, which I found odd). I did not enjoy this game because I felt like I was solving a puzzle every 3-4 minutes and had to solve one every time I wanted to progress in the game. I don't mind a nice mix of the two but the HOS should be the dominant form of puzzle if that's the genre the game claims to be. Regarding other elements of the game - I agree that the graphics and animations were lovely. The scenery was very well done. The voice overs were of high quality and the story, although not very original was interesting and engaging enough. The hints button is not incredibly useful although it will tell you if a particular area has no tasks you can complete. There is no map of where you are going or have been - which I think is a very nice feature on many games - and there were a few times it was not clear to me how to progress. If you like mini-puzzles then I would recommend but i don't think this is a true 5-star game.
July 4, 2012
Silly and Simple
The best thing about this game was its animated introduction, seconded by its reviews. After these, I was expecting a game so brilliant, I nearly bought it without playing the demo.
Wow. So glad I didn't.
First, I found it absurdly childish. When the "Evil Plants" spring up, you have to find your Protecting Light Symbols by swishing around the screen with your Magic Amulet (AKA cursor) until you have clicked on all seven or so of them.
Assuming you survive that threat, you may encounter a so-called HOS. Except that these are not Hidden Object Screens at all. They are mini-games with perhaps 10 silhouettes which identify objects that will allow you to perform tasks: cut a rope, dig up a plant, etc. These remind me of puzzles I wrote for fifth grade logic books.
Should you prove smarter than a fifth grader, you may exit the room/courtyard/whatever and find a challenge, a puzzle or an actual mini-game. These are so simple that you might almost have to be smarter than a third grader. (Just kidding. Not that smart.)
The atmosphere is definitely not dark and foreboding. It is fairy tale and lovely, even if the villain does appear and inform your majesty that you must marry him on the morrow, and his black panther does growl menacingly (whilst slurping up buckets of water, and how scary is that!)
So play the demo, and if you really think you can stand an entire game of it, have fun. For me, the single hour sufficed.
July 9, 2012
Another dark and dreary HO.
Does everything the developers offer have to be so dark, dreary and depressing. Just the background is enough to turn one off.Do all the developers live in a cave and only come out at Night? Would be nice to see a game with lots of sunlight in it.
May 11, 2012