Enigmatis: The Mists of Ravenwood Collector's Edition
Artifex Mundi brings us another epic game!
It's been a year since I uncovered the preacher's sinister plot and scores of murders in Maple Creek. In that time, I managed to trail him from the autumnal beauty of New England to the redwood forests of California. Just when I thought I'd lost him, I came upon an abandoned camper outside the gates of an equally abandoned nature park. The family's belonging were scattered around the area, and gigantic claw marks gouged the roof of the camper. It was clear I'd just missed whatever happened.
Where had the family gone? What had occurred here? A dark apparition led me to suspect I'd once again found the preacher, and that I'd soon discover more bodies and signs of his demonic activities. What I did find shocked even me. The plot was bigger than I could have imagined. And more horrible. Once again, my sanity would be tested, as well as my investigative and deductive skills. And, once again, it would be up to me to put a stop to it.
Notes: Artifex Mundi has put together a worthy sequel to Enigmatis: The Ghosts of Maple Creek. The plot is a masterpiece of storytelling, with twists and turns that will blow your mind. Gameplay is fairly traditional for a HOPA, with three types of HO scenes offered (interactive list, sequential silhouette, and FROG), find and use inventory items, and puzzles.
Music, sound, and voiceovers are very well done and really add to the immersion. Graphics are nicely detailed without being photo-real. Animation, including poser characters, is excellent including lip-synch.
There are the traditional extras in the CE, along with 30 animated butterflies to find and "illusive" morphing objects which are very easy to spot and almost amateurish in graphic style (a disappointment for me). The bonus adventure is a prequel of sorts and sets up the sequel, which I hope we won't have to wait two years for!
I highly recommend not only The Mists of Ravenwood, but also The Ghosts of Maple Creek. And just about Artifex Mundi's entire catalog of games. They're fast becoming one of the leading developers, in my opinion. My overall rating is 4 and a half stars.
September 29, 2013
Not perfect, but what is...
I have the first Enigmatis and really liked it. This one is a little different, with a nice location and scenery. Graphics are nice, but some are a little fuzzy, especially in the SG. SG is nice, but it seems that some steps are missing, e.g. back one, turn left to owl tree. That may seem like hand-holding, but when the SG doesn't list everything, it helps for clear instructions. Game play is nice.
There is a jump map, but it doesn't actually take you where you need to go, it just gets you in the general direction...if you remember about where it might be. Not every location is marked (at least not that I see so far in the game). There are morphing objects to find and collectables, which I really like. Haven't seen too many HOGs yet, but I like that you can either find the item, or play the matching game. A change now and then is nice during a game. Some items are well hidden. You have to find evidence in order to solve the mystery of the game. That is different and fun, but you have to continually go back to the dungeon. Again, the jump map puts you in the general area and not at the dungeon door like other games will.
Not too sure about the guy that is "helping." Got the feeling that it's another one of those "ha, I got you" kind of helpers and he is just using us for his evil deeds. I could be wrong, been wrong before, will be again.
All that being said, I did enjoy the game and have the need to see if I'm right about the dungeon guy. This game is not as challenging as the first in the series, but it was interesting. This looks to be a fairly long game and with today's special, who can pass this one up? I'm losing another punch credit today, so not happy about that at all. Either we need some good SE games, or I need to quit completely. Haven't decided yet.
As always, try it for yourself and see what you think. We all have different tastes in games and you may not care for this one at all. Thanks for the reviews.
September 26, 2013
Didn't seem much different from other HOGs
I'll mention up-front that I tend to find HOGs to be pretty repetitive... I've mostly stopped buying them because they're all basically the same thing, and I started to find them boring. The only things that save them (in my opinion) are top-notch puzzles, or excellent stories, or both. For example, I really liked the first Empress of the Deep, the Drawn series, Return to Ravenhearst, and Eternal Journey: New Atlantis. They were creative and different.
This one had a decent story, but it was pretty obvious from the very beginning where it was going. I mean, it's not a "twist" if it's immediately clear what the twist is. The puzzles were easy. The thing that stood out for me was that the hidden object scenes had a lot of interactive clues, and you could switch to a pair matching game instead if you didn't want to do the hidden object. That was great, because in my opinion the hidden object scenes are just a cheap way to pad games out for length, without adding much to the playability or content. This time I actually did play the majority of the HOs, and even with doing that, the game still only took a little over 3 hours for me to finish. I didn't skip any of the cutscenes either.
So overall, it was nice, but it wasn't really anything out of the ordinary. The story was well told through cutscenes, but it was a pretty typical story, really. I can think of a twist that would have been amazing... SPOILER (kind of)... what if they had made it that the preacher was actually the archangel Raphael, and was there to kill the Reapers? They could explain away his actions from the first game by saying that those people who he killed had been turned evil by the Reapers, and that the only way to save their soul and send them to Heaven was to kill them with the same blade that kills the Reapers. Now THAT would have been a twist! Or he could be the archangel but he turned evil, and is now out to replace Asmodai. But instead it turned out in the most typical way.
It's too bad. Better story or better puzzles could have elevated it to something really great. As it is, I'd recommend it to people who typically enjoy HOGs, this one's nicely done.
October 1, 2013
Very good game!
Everything is good about this game, though there is one thing that irritates me: the little girl. The only thing she could nag about was to find her parents. Understandable, but a little bit too much imo.. They could have given her some more interesting text. But this is just a minor thing, for the rest: bravo!
September 27, 2013
I was really excited to see a sequel!
I'm one of those people who finds a really good game, and then I hope and hope and hope that they make a sequel! However, I normally get my hopes dashed as there are only a few string of games that have consistently made improvements to the right areas while still holding on to the core of the story-line.
This game begins as the continuing adventure of getting to be the Detective on the hunt for the bad guy from the first game, Enigmatis: The Ghosts of Maple Creek. (Just an FYI: You do not have to play the first in order to understand this game!)
The graphics were good, not the best. You could tell this game was connected to the previous through artistic style and appearance... but the graphics certainly were not the worst!
The story line was pretty good. It had a few "huh" moments, but that was easy enough to figure out. It's a nice adventure for a beginner/medium player but not a real challenge for someone who plays a lot. I'd tell someone, especially someone who hasn't played the first game, to give either/both a try!
In all honesty,when I buy a game, especially the Collector's Edition, I hope that it takes me longer than a day to finish it. That was the one area where I was the most disappointed. I by no means sat here all day long playing the game, yet it didn't take long to finish. I'd like for there to be more of a challenge, and for the mini-games to take a little more intellect to solve.
In general (and not just specifically this game), I think it'd be nice for companies/programmers to add more regular level game play for a CE. If you're going to pay twice the price, give the customer twice the product.
This would be a game I'd recommend especially the Standard Version! I think most people will have fun with it.
Have a good one!
October 1, 2013
Enigmatis, the mists of ravenwood collectors edition
Just finished the whole game and sooooo dissapointed thats theres no extra bonus game in the collectors edition. When I was getting to the end of the game I was so looking forward to more game play.
Having said that, its a brilliant game. Very impressed and loved all the scenery and backdrops. Its got a very morbid story line so dont know if I will go back to play it very often, cause once you know, you know. It saved my weekend so thankyou for that. Keep the spookiness coming!
September 29, 2013
Not as good or challenging as the first one
I loved the first one! Played it again about 4 months ago. Even on hardcore mode this game was too easy. You get a few items in your inventory and than you use them. I like the challenge of having items for awhile and remembering where to utilize them. The only thing better about this one vs. the second is the graphics. Not a bad game I just prefer a challenge when playing adventure games. It seems as though many of the games coming out recently are geared more for beginners.
September 27, 2013
Definitely worth buying as a CE...
I loved the first Enigmatis game and I also love the developer that makes this series, so I bought this game without trying it and I don't regret it. The game ended up being just as good as I imagined it would be.The plot has already been well covered by other reviewers here, so I am not going to describe it, but I will say that I found the story to be enjoyable and very well thought out. The plot did have some aspects to it that we have seen in previous games, such as a detective searching for missing people and their disappearance having to do with mysterious evil forces, but the developers managed to put an original spin on these themes and the story did not feel cliche to me.
The game has all the toots and whistles that make it worthy of being a CE, and I know that people will be happy that it has morphing objects and achievements. I can take it or leave it when it comes to morphing objects, but I do like achievements and trying to earn all of them adds to the fun and also gives the game re-playability.
The game had good length and I played it in more than one sitting over a few days. I would guess that it took me at least 6 hours to complete the main game (I play a bit on the slow side, so for faster players it may take less time) and about an hour to finish the bonus game. Another reason why I think this game is worth buying as a CE is because the bonus game actually adds to the story, and doesn't just feel like filler. That is my biggest gripe about most bonus games in other CEs, that they seem disconnected from the main story and feel like they were slapped together at the last minute, but such is not the case here. I thought the bonus was just as well thought out as the rest of the game.
Another thing I really enjoyed about the game was the puzzles. I got the achievement for finishing all of them without skipping. I liked how a lot of them had to do with logic, and that most of them were challenging without being too hard. I also liked how the H0 scenes had lots of interactivity, and that they mixed things up by having some scenes be Frogs (fractured objects). And there was also an option to play a matching game instead of doing a H0 scene and I liked that as well since sometimes I do get sick of looking for hidden objects.
If you like morphing objects, achievements and a bonus game that adds to the story, then I recommend that you buy this game as a CE, but if those things don't matter to you as much you might want to wait for the SE. Either way I think this is a very well made game from an awesome developer and I definitely recommend it!
October 16, 2013
Premium quality game. Budget store graphics.
Ahh Artifex Mundi - This developer never stops me from scratching my head in bewilderment. They obviously have a great deal of talent - they hire the best writers for a comelling page turning story. They have the best programmers that can put together a top notch game with with just the right ballance of freedom and linier movement in the progression. They have big budget cut scene animations that compliment the game perfectly without taking it over. They even hire some high quality scrip writers and actors.
And then they completely mess it up by using really cheap, badly rendered in-game graphics.
It's like the developement team have a meeting where everything is planned out with pride and then someone says "well I SUPPOSE we had better put some graphics in there - who is the cheapest and quickest?" . It's almost like the graphics are an afterthought and a chore done with resentment.
As a game this is exellent but be aware that the graphics are at best Beta quality and quickly become, well, pretty bad. If that dosen't bother you then you are in for some serious hours of enjoyment and escapeism.
February 1, 2014
Dark story line
I thought this was going to be like the Ravenhurst games but it was much darker. I liked the puzzles and there wasn't a lot of hidden objects which was good. But there was a LOT of story, which I found tedious, particularly since it's not my favorite sort of story. You can also switch out of the hidden object mini games to do a match game instead which I liked much better, even though it was the same pictures that were to be matched in every game. Would have been nice to have new ones for each game. The tasks were fun and it was an okay game but not my favorite. I played it through pretty fast - in one evening.
October 11, 2013