The Agency of Anomalies: The Last Performance
Overall Very Enjoyable
This is my first Agency of Anomalies game and I'm excited to have discovered the series! I'm downloading the Orphanage to try as I write this. Here are the pros and cons:
-good graphics, music, and sfx
-rich gaming experience
-interesting and new challenges
-puzzles were not easy to solve
-HOGs weren't impossibly challenging like some I've played
-generally very unique and unlike other BF games I've played
-the storyline really wasn't very interesting or enticing, but see note below
-some HOGs were so easy I literally finished them in two minutes
-lots of back and forth without always having a clear idea of where you need to go next, so used the hints for this a lot
This game is definitely worth trying. Although the storyline wasn't amazing, this is the first BF game where it didn't bother me because the other elements were so well done and unique. I enjoyed it and I'll definitely play it again.
January 7, 2013
the graphics were good and sound quality was also ok
but the story was dull
it failed to interest me, i got bored after playing the game for 15 minutes. I was expecting more from the game but it was a huge disappointment !!!!
January 4, 2013
Entertaining, fun and a great value
A lot of care and effort obviously went into this game's creation. Hidden object scenes are varied (including interactive objects, and even complete variations such as reverse object finding and silhouette versions), adventure puzzles are plenty but logical, and puzzles are often serious, non-obvious types that could even work as extended mini-games by themselves. It is not a hard game by any means and I'd recommend playing in the hardest setting if you're not unfamiliar with the genre. HOG objects are almost always big and clear, and missing something in a location is very rare. 'Fair' is the best word to describe the gameplay, and consider it is not a short game at all. I needed about 5 hours to finish it.
The storyline doesn't really shine, although the initial premise is interesting: a series of circus freaks with unnatural powers are losing their human form and you're asked to investigate. In the process, you'll gain those very same powers and use them in your investigation. Unfortunately, the game falls flat in characterization, as very little is told of each freaks or even the villain, excluding some minimalistic and (perhaps unintentionally) hilarious dialog lines. The game doesn't take itself seriously and that, in my opinion, is a missed opportunity.
On the art front, there is some great and memorable music and the graphics are crisp and detailed, with native widescreen support. I'm not a fan of the art style, though: in many cases it looks like old-fashioned 3D renders, and sometimes there is a feeling of inconsistency, as if it were the result of a bad mix of 3D, hand-drawn, and photo material. For the most part they are ok, though.
Perhaps the lowest point of the game is the technical execution. The very low performance affects everything from the jumpy mouse pointer to the puzzles and even the cutscene animations. I don't know which system the developer is using, but serious work is needed there.
Overall, a fun and pretty long experience. I look forward to future offerings from the developers, specially if they take their story more seriously and fix their engine.
December 31, 2012
a good game in the series
it is a HO object game mostly, but some scenes you have to place the objects back into the scene. the hint and skip buttons charge fast. the hints will walk you right through the game if you want, and the mini games were different. i skipped most of them because i just am not good at them, but they are very different. it wasn't overly hard, but you did have to think about what comes next and where you need to go unless you use the hints a lot. you have a journal but no map.
you are trying to figure out what happened to a cast of characters that were going to put on a performance. some of the HO scenes are crowded and some are hard to find the objects because of dimness, but other games are much worse.
December 13, 2012
Some interest features
poor graphics, but interest variations of hidden object scenes and fun minigames. music and sfx are not annoying. Many of typical and usual interacts and items, dont like that. but puzzles are cool!
December 1, 2012
Lots of Variety, Good Mini-Games, Somewhat Lackluster Art
I'm writing this based on the trial but I think I'm going to buy.
I've done trials for all three the Agency of Anomalies games but didn't much like the first two due primarily to poor graphics and far too easy scenes. 'The Last Performance' is, in my mind, a major improvement on the earlier games, though it still has flaws I wouldn't expect to see in a game released only recently.
The major drawback to me is the art. The interactive objects, be that tools you need to pick up or objects you need to find in hidden object scenes, don't blend in well with the rest of the images. The little animation there is include characters against static backgrounds. There's also not a lot of variety in the art as all action takes place in and around a limited area of a theatre which doesn't seem to have very many rooms. Another review said there's only 11 hidden object locations, each of which is played at least twice, so I'm guessing that this theme continues throughout the whole game.
Other than that this game is rather enjoyable so long as you like both mini-games and hidden object scenes. If you plan to mostly skip the mini-games then I'd suggest giving a pass on the game as there's (again, according to another reviewer) 14 mini-games and 17 'crystal ball' games (the latter is used to get new paranormal abilities) which are essentially all mini-games in themselves. What I appreciated was that the mini-games are difficult enough to interesting and different enough from the usual 'move a ball into a corner' 'switch out colours' type mini-game that while there's nothing completely original it's not likely to add to burnout over typical mini-games. Another plus is that there's 3 different types of hidden object scenes: list, silhouette, and 'like with like' matching. That gives enough variety I wasn't bored with the relatively easy scenes.
I didn't skip any of the games nor use the hint in any hidden object scenes -- outside of them I used it to find what room I should actually do something in as that's somewhat necessary without a map that shows objectives -- and I found the game took me notably longer than my average HOG pace. I ended up just at the end of the second chapter when my hour trial ran out when usually I make it through the second chapter at somewhere around the 40-45 minute point (demos typically end at the beginning of the third chapter, which is how I've gauged that). It makes up for the game being only seven chapters instead of eight for certain.
The storyline is rather thin but I didn't run across a lot of "But I *could* use a crowbar on that!' frustration where you have a tool that would work but they specifically want a different tool (sometimes a much less logical one) and I don't truly play for the storyline (they're almost ALL rather predictable from ten minutes in at best or so vague as to only give you what you need in the last chapter).
Overall, I liked the game and would recommend it. I might even buy it assuming nothing else I like better comes my way. I just wish the art was a bit better.
November 20, 2012
Completely expected... And I mean 'completely' expected.
By what I mean in the title, the game left me somewhat at a loss of what to say. There were certainly good things, but also a few bad, so I'll list them.
Pros: Loved the scenery and the music was a bit repetitive, but still the music was nice.
Cons: Most HOGs seemed relatively easy, though still fun.
Pros: The unique cast of characters was a nice surprise to see.
Cons: Sometimes you could get a tool and carry it for thirty minutes before actually needing it.
Pros: At first the story seemed completely new-
There it is! There's the issue I had with the game right there. I'm sure you noticed the 'at first'. That's because at first the game did seem new, seem like a change, and then it became a little... Predictable. Maybe it was because it was much like cinderstone orphanage. It wasn't hard to figure out who the antagonist was either. It was bluntly obvious! There wasn't many moments that made you enticed and it seemed that the storyline held the interest of your average spam mail. I waited for a pick me up; the story stayed strong on its course, but never changed and by the end I felt a bit cheated...
However, other than story, the quality was good and the HOGs were relatively fun. Even though the storyline seemed exactly like a reprint of cinderstone orphanage. Still, good game, just not my thing.
November 20, 2012
Enjoyed it very much!! I'd highly recommend. The length of the game was good. ('12)
November 12, 2012
Loved this game!
Hours and hours and hours of play. I REALLY liked this one. Full of puzzles and HOS's and story, and characters. Well done.
October 24, 2012
Great addition to the "Agency" games!
I loved the other two Agency of Anomalies games, and this one did not disappoint. The setting, game play, and characters were fantastic.
October 23, 2012