Cute different game!
Why am I not surprised anymore to find that, although everyone constantly complain about not finding new TMG (including myself), everytime a new one pops up they all keep complaining about it? I suspect they're all so used to the same build-it or resource management type of game that they can't handle anymore some old style TMG...
I tried this game thinking that I probably would find it frustrating as well, since I can't really stand too fast clicking and impossible goals. But I was so thrilled that there was a new original time management game that it was impossible for me to resist so I ignored the reviews and gave it a chance anyway.
You have to manage a jewelry shop, which is a pretty new idea (although I don't mind even overused ideas in TMG). I usually find annoying having to drag and drop customers, but it wasn't a problem here, at all. The first 5 levels were pretty easy and relaxed. Around the sixth level I couldn't achieve more than one star score, so I had to try another strategy: serving the most customers possible at once to make long chains of combos. This not only made me gain 3 stars in all those levels but I was able to sometimes triplicate the expert score! I beat one level with a 15500 score while the expert/three stars score was 5000. So the trick is to make a lot of combos! Serve the most people you can at a time (including greeting them and collecting their payment)! Forget their hearts/patience, it won't make much difference whether they leave with one or five hearts (the difference is 15-20 points maybe? While just by making 4-5-6 or more combos you can gain around 300-400 extra points!), the important thing is they don't completely run out of patience because I suppose you would lose the customer then. But you even have coffee for that!
There is a thief who once in a while try to rob the shop. He was able to steal only once from me, it wasn't that difficult to stop. Just try to never queue too many actions at a time (never more than 4-5 for example), because they can't be cancelled. By doing this you will most likely have the time to stop it even if you are in the middle of other tasks (the thief takes some time to be able to steal, he doesn't steal anything right away, and if you are attentive, you?ll be warned of his arrival in advance).
The upgrades were also another major complaint among players. Well they're not technically 'upgrades' but more like bonuses that you can buy and use during the level to make things simpler. Honestly you don't even need them to achieve 3 stars if you use the combos strategy. I buy them just because at the end of each level I have a lot of money to spend and then apply them during the level just for fun, not really for necessity -sometimes I even forget to use them (the only one who in my opinion is really useful is the showcase extension since more jewels means the first one will be very expensive); so I'm not really sure why people complain that they're not permanent, the game would be much too easy if they were. Sometimes there's even a sale so I suggest you stock up when they cost less if you really need them (they're cumulative and will remain in your inventory even after you change location, while money always restart from zero).
It?s true that in addition to that, they could have also added some permanent upgrades to the shop, I love upgrading each location/place in a TMG.
You can use the stars you gain by completing each level to craft different necklaces for the king, although that part wasn?t that exciting.
In each location you also have around 5 awards/bonus goals to win/achieve (making a certain number of combos, a certain number of happy customers, sell many expensive jewels etc).
The cursor didn't have any problem for me, it never missed one click so maybe it depends on your computer or the fact that you are rushing too much, if you have issues with it. Having the custom cursor wasn?t a problem either. I didn't even notice what cursor I was using.
As a final note, I suggest you follow the tutorial well, it's fast and really, it tells you everything you need to do (including where to throw items you don't need, since someone claimed that the game didn't explained that, and it even gives you suggestions like the combos strategy). Honestly, this is a nice, original, enjoyable game.
Oh, I forgot to mention the graphic and music which were good as well. Not much of a storyline from what I saw but the characters are cute. Some spelling mistakes here and there (like 'expansive' instead of 'expensive' or 'patient' instead of 'patience') but nothing too bothering (at least for me since I'm not an english speaker).
This is not a perfect game, but a nice, much needed change! That's why I give it 5 stars.
Thank you developers for a new and different game! I wish all developers would start doing more different types of games! But I guess with this kind of ?reception? they will stick to the My Kingdom for the Princess genre probably for a long time yet, and play it safe. :\ Which means I?m going to keep playing old games instead of buying new ones :P
August 8, 2013
Actually a fun game
Reading some of the reviews I almost didn't give this game a chance. However, after playing my 1 hour demo I actually really enjoyed it & decided to purchase it.
There are some quirks on this game, for example as another reviewer wrote sometimes you can't get rid of stuff Amber is carrying, your supposed to be able to hand that stuff off to Eric (even if it is a new watch from the case for example) but for some reason he doesn't always take it from Amber (typical male?).
Another thing I didn't like is there is a high clicking rate, similar to other time mgmt games like diner dash, however in this game you also have to refill the cases which is another series of clicks you don't need to do in dd. So give yourself a break after an hour or so if your fingers need it.
I didn't have any issues picking up the item's I wanted or canceling Amber's actions by right-clicking however. That would be frustrating.
What I did like about this game was the purchases in your store really mean the difference between making a mediocre score to making double (or more) the expert score. Also the purchases aren't really for your "shop" their for your level, if you don't use an upgrade during that level it will carry over and you can use it on a future level. Therefore, if something is on sale in the shop (Amber's speedy shoes for example) load up because you can apply them in future rounds.
Another thing I liked about this game was chaining your actions could really increase your score (I don't think the tutorial went over this) so get everyone's requests at once, deliver, cash-out, and then return the leftover jewels to Eric.
If there are people in the lobby getting anxious you can purchase some hearts from the shop so you can keep them calm while you finish with your current guests.
Overall it was a fun game because if you're like me and constantly want to beat your previous high score, you can do it by making smart purchases in the shop, and chaining your actions which is often not the case in other TM games where no matter what you do you can't beat a previous score.
September 18, 2013
This TM game brings me to old times when great time managed games where standard.
Lot of fun, great music and awesome art!
Thanks for bringing it in!
August 5, 2013
Great Traditional TM Game! Loved it!
For those of us that love TM games,I think this one is a winner! It's a nice change to see a traditional TM game. This one reminds me of Youda Jewel Shop, although it is much better. In this game you own your jewel shop, and have a contract to make 5 different necklaces for the king. You serve your customers, while keeping an eye out for burglars, who will try to rob your jewels. Depending upon your score, you will earn 1, 2 or 3 gold stars. These gold stars allow you to purchase the jewels to make the Kings necklaces. I loved it, and purchased as soon as the demo was over. Hope you enjoy it too.
August 2, 2013
Fun & Challenging
I had beta'd this game and am so glad to see BF has finally offered it for sale. This game is so challenging! The characters are cute and the graphics are great. Give it a try!
August 2, 2013
This one's not so easy!
I am a big fan of this genre of games my favorite one is Haunted Domains but this game is very difficult to keep up with for the simple fact that the customers lose their patients right from the start and their hearts drain way to quickly. The goal is to seat the customers, greet the customers and then get the jewelry from the showcase they chose, replenish the showcases, check out the customer and then collect the money and give the money to Eric (who just sits on his butt at the counter!) When a thief breaks in to steal the jewels you must get the keys from Eric and activate the lasers on that showcase. One thing I didn't like was the fact that if the showcases were empty at the end of the round, they would still be empty at the beginning of the next round. After each level you use the stars you earned to buy jewelry to build a necklace for the king and with the points you earned you can buy upgrades such as chairs to keep customer happy or faster shoes for Amber. You then have to apply the upgrades during the game which I didn't like. I did have fun playing this game but it isn't as fun as DD and others I have played.
August 2, 2013
I play a good forty minutes of the demo. I like it yet there is something lacking. The upgrades that you just bought needed to be rebought reapplied. That in it self takes time as well as the customers patients goes down. The question is do you apply or tend to the customer. Another aspect to the game is your shop appears to be a five star shop. Why not start out with a dump that you can up grade as you go. Then there is the necklace that you make. Not many choices as I would of liked. All right all in all if you bored a great game to pass the time. Then it starts to go south after awhile. Try before you buy. Me I'm not sure if I'm going to purchase..
August 2, 2013
It was ok
This is based on the 60 minute demo.
It's a TM dash game where you run a jewelry shop and need to serve customers their orders.
The tutorial was helpful and the graphics were cute.
Yes, the customers patience drained rather fast, but I never had a problem finishing a level without 3 stars even if customers left without full patience.
Before each level you can purchase upgrades, such as faster movement, chairs that boost customer's hearts, coffee boosts, upgrades to jewelry cases, etc.
Although the upgrades don't carry over to the next level, you could apply the upgrade to the jewelry cases right at the start of the level before any customers arrive, so that never hindered me. Applying upgrades to make you go faster was quick so applying that in the middle of the game took 2 seconds - that wasn't a big deal either.
The pace was good and the challenge was decent.
I did have an issue with clicks and queuing. On one level, I couldn't grab the coffee because it was so close to a jewelry case that I kept picking up a necklace instead, so that was annoying. It was also awkward with queuing tasks at tables. I'd think I clicked the third person at the table but instead queued up the second. It wasn't a constant thing though so it didn't take much away from game play for me.
In addition, you couldn't cancel queues, so that was a negative, especially if the thief appeared. You were basically stuck running around finishing your queues while the thief got away with his prize.
Some reviewers mentioned that if you had items in your hand that you needed to get rid of, you were stuck. Not so. Just drop them off to Eric and poof! they were gone. I don't recall that being part of the tutorial and I kind of figured that out on my own.
Overall, I had fun playing it and I think others will too. Try the demo and see for yourself.
August 3, 2013
A lot better than nothing.
I was thrilled to find a new TM game that is not a build-it game. The set is pretty and there are challenges, but some are useless. I don't like the thief angle. The upgrades don't last from round to round. It would have been nice to upgrade the shop as others have said. I still like the game and will buy it, but only because there are so few TMs these days.
August 3, 2013
"Sparkling Amber" Will Surprise You
When I first saw this game on the Big Fish site, I thought it looked pretty juvenile. But I am a huge TM fan, and good TM games seem to be a very rare thing anymore, so I thought I would download the free trial and give it a try.
I was really pleasantly surprised! It is much more challenging than it looks. The first few levels were typical tutorial-type simple play, and I easily got the 3 stars on those levels. But it didn't take long before the levels started getting much more difficult, and I had trouble getting the 3 stars. You have to seat customers, take their "order" for jewels, go get their order, bring it to them, collect their money, and return the jewel bag before you can seat the next customer. And in between that, you have to keep going to the safe to replenish the jewel cases. A lot to do, with very little time to do it, as the customers getting increasingly impatient. Somewhat similar to Diner Dash, if Flo was on hyper caffeine.
All in all, it was a fairly fun game.
August 2, 2013