Haunted Hotel: Charles Dexter Ward Collector's Edition
Not at all outstanding by any means...
Oh, dear !...another game based on the supernatural with an abundance of skulls, skeletons, coffins, all wrapped up in a gloomyish package of crypts, swamps, derelict hotel and other similar welcoming locales that are meant to convey horror, even terror, yet fail to convince every step of the way. I haven't yet found a game that will chill me to death... LOL
In spite of all this, I found the graphics, cutscenes and voice-over interesting. The movies have been given an old-fashioned aura, the visuals are on the whole in line with that wannabe creepy atmosphere already mentioned, the voice-over is good, the music is okay and non-obtrusive though not worthy of a horror motion picture, and the colors not at all unpleasant despite their lack in brightness. None of them, alas, are good enough to really immerse the player, least of all to deserve an Oscar.
That set aside, the whirling black smoke [ie: the evil spirit] that destroys everything and shuts off the light was laughable.
The very first thing that started to fuel my interest was the first minigame: a variant of the Hanoi Tower that is not that easy to complete. I expected the rest of the puzzles to be of like standard. Well, they are much easier and less challenging, at least those in the demo, since it lets you play only Day 1, ie: Chapter 1.
The second was how easy the HO Scenes were, so much so I didn't have to use one hint. I hate difficult HO Scenes !
The third and last one was the visit to the different locales. Plenty to see.
Unfortunately, my fun didn't last, my fuel tank depleted quickly.
I completed the demo is 40 mns exactly without rushing or skipping anything. So, how many hours of playtime does that give us ? Not sure.
Hopping from one location to another soon became tedious as you have a lot of backtracking to do, very often for very little, little picking up the paper notes... of which there are quite of few !... or the obvious "useful" items. I like complex adventures, but when I have to walk a lot I want a good reason as well as originality.
Finding and using these "useful" items is straightforward; some respond to some logic, others simply don't, like patching up a hole in a boat with... moss ! Yes. Other than that, the items are standard: crowbar, sledgehammer, etc... Same as in other games.
I am not sure the storyline made any sense. Apart from the fact that, once again, you have to "fight" the forces of darkness to save your brother ... how original !... I am at a loss to determine how well the plot unfolds or how exciting if finally is. Funny how these casual games always use the same theme and get you to "fight" without ever giving you a real sense of danger !
Conclusion ? The best is for you to try the demo, see how you like it, see if the preview of the rest of the game tickles your fancy.
As to my recommendation, I am hesitant. I awarded that game 3 stars (rounded up) as I believe it can be enjoyed by gamers who haven't played lots of similar games, by fans of gloomy stories, as well as by those who are prepared to overlook all the imperfections, but that's as far as it goes. And since it would seem, according to other reviewers, that the Bonus Chapter has nothing to do with the core game, the CE may not be worth it, considering also that:
- the SG is superfluous as you can draw your own map on a piece of paper
- the hint system is fine and the tasks are clear
- the overall quality of the game does not justify the extra expense.
Unless you love wallpapers...
As for me, Charles is not on my must-buy list.
July 13, 2012
sorry about your luck
I had did the testing for this game last year and it was fun. I purchased this game before i saw the reviews. so here we go. The game was fun up to a point then I lost the fun part. I did enjoy the ho and the puzzles all through the game. The back ground noise of the swamp creature was nice and the music was not annoying. Yet the story is true up to a point then for some strange reason I just lost the fun and the story. It seem like nothing I was doing matter just do it and go to next scene. Wow the adventure came to a screeching halt! I mean a screeching halt. OH OH by the way the extra game play was a joke it had nothing to do with the story. The first ending before extra game play was sorry and I was let down so badly believe me: and the extra game play will lead you to believe there will be a part 2. Do not worry I do not plan to purchase it when it comes out. My question is to Big fish the hint was so well put together that you did not need the sg. I lost 13.99 on this game I was so let down this game is pittiful and the reg version would have been better.
June 12, 2012
a bit disappointed
The HOG scenes were visually appealing.
The story line was good
The game itself was very short
The extra game play lacked any imagination at all. Just one puzzle after another. No Adventure in that.
Wished I hadn't spent the money on the collectors addition
February 27, 2013
Not my cup of tea
Tried the demo and while the story was interesting, it was way too confusing and not clear what was to be done without the guide. The hidden objects hints took too long as well.
June 11, 2012
sorry not my kind of game
I found this game to be a bit too Dark for my liking ,Just personal taste.Cant explain, and I hate to be negative ,After all the work put into this by the artists.
too slow, too much black smoke,story too weak ..just not my thing
June 11, 2012
Fun but ending was terrible!
Nice story and game graphics were good but ending ruined it for me because it was like a movie with expected end. Bummed!
June 12, 2012
Not worth the money if you want an actual storyline
I read the reviews, but I bought it anyway. I didn't enjoy it. The story was very weak. The HOS scenes were okay, but the flow got busy as objects filled up quickly and I lost track of what I was doing. There wasn't really a plot to help my logical thinking process move me to the areas I needed to go in, so I had to use the hint a lot for that. No good interactions.
June 24, 2012
After playing 30 mins of the trial I lost interest.
The HOS were 'same old' as were the puzzles, storyline didn't grab me either so deleted it.
I will pass on this one.
June 13, 2012
haunted hotel: charles dexter ward collector's edition
Not enough hos, hint button is slow, not sure what the storeline was. I wouldn't buy it again, sorry.
June 13, 2012
good not great mixed feelings
I really needed the collectors edition even with a very helpful hint but overall the game tottally needs a map - I regularly lost track of where to go and how to get places. some things were easy to figure out and some were quite a stretch. the story line was not as clear as I would have liked. the scenery was good, hidden object good and games well done and challenging although I skipped a lot because I just got too frustrated. I did like the game but just found some parts frustrating. and I really didn't like how long it took to end when I finished. I appreciate the need to promote the people who created the game but this went on way too long without being able to skip. I recommend for those who like a challenge.
December 9, 2012