Hidden Expedition: Smithsonian Hope Diamond Collector's Edition
Enjoyed & was also disappointed
Two of the prior Hidden Expedition games (Devil's Triangle and Uncharted Islands) are on my list of all-time favorites. They were fun and also challenging and long. One of them my wife and I played together over much of a weekend and enjoyed every minute. So, I had expectations. I was excited to see another, *and* a game made with the Smithsonian, to boot -- yea, yea, heaven and bliss.
The positives: Enjoyed the tasks, enjoyed the scenery and the time spent in the Smithsonian. Thought the level of challenge in the HO games was very good, with only one instance of the list-name not matching the picture :) (a "sparrow" to me looked like a chickadee :) which could be due to regional differences in sparrows :) or that I'm a picky birder :) ).
More positives: Liked the thinking of the devs in the bonus content - that you had to solve another puzzle to unlock some things. (Except, see challenge level in re: puzzles). Liked the Custom choice of difficulty - yes, I used it.
The negatives: Most of the puzzles/mini-games were easy. There were a few exceptions that I can think of, but most of them did not make me really think and work at in order to solve. That's not to say I didn't enjoy some of the more unusual ones, I did, and I liked the fact that they kept instructions hidden so I could try to figure out the How myself. But.... I want to use the grey cells. Clearly I am in a minority because puzzles are getting easier and easier and easier with each passing year, so devs must think this is the thing to do - make puzzles that appeal to the folks who don't want to do them in the first place. (a puzzle that requires you to simply input the solution that you found on a piece of paper is NOT a puzzle....)
The biggest negative: This game felt short. I don't keep track of my time because I think that's a useless bit of info since it's so personal. I did not feel like I had taken a long adventure with lots of ins and outs and this room to explore and that. The bonus game felt short, too.
Maybe I'm nuts and if I were to count the individual locations in this HE versus the # in the last two HE games they would be the same. Maybe my expectations were unfair. But, I was, for the most part, enjoying the game, and suddenly it was over. "Suddenly" is how it felt.
January 8, 2014
Not really a major challenge.
Overall, a good game, but not really challenging. One or two of the HOPs were good, but I finished the game and all the bonus content in a few hours.
The graphics and sound are very good - I tend to play these at low volume and turn the music off, so I can't really comment on the musical content.
January 3, 2014
Educational but a bit rote
I've always loved the Hidden Expedition games. This one certainly had the most to offer for people who love to learn. And I love to learn! I do hope that there are more HE games in the future based on Smithsonian collections.
That said, one of the key factors I was really looking forward to was largely missing this time around: HE's loopy style of fun. I spotted occasional flashes of the line's signature goofiness in the first third of the game, but the story soon moved into a more rote type of adventure--the player vs. a greedy bunch of thieves. We've got plenty of those kinds of games out there already. I look forward to seeing future HE games that once again marry globe-trekking intrigue with writing that doesn't take itself so seriously.
December 30, 2013
Good Game but too short and too easy.
Title pretty much sums it up. Game was way too short and the puzzles were no challenge at all, they were probably the easiest I have seen in one of these games. For the most part the hidden objects scenes everything was obvious although there were a few challenging ones. Everything was pretty much straightforward in this game on where to go, u had minimal rooms in which to use stuff as u really didn't have to go back and forth through a ton of area. Good game, enjoyed it, wish it was longer and a bit more challenging.
December 24, 2013
Fun while it lasted
So excited to see another Hidden Expedition HOG. The graphics were vivid and gorgeous, yet the game was over rather quickly. Done in less than 6 hrs. Is the price worth it? I'll let you decide.
December 26, 2013
Does it Get More Exciting?
I'm in the Smithsonian...does it get more exciting? The game is very well done, however, I'm getting a wee bit bored....
December 25, 2013
Expect a Great Addition
Great start. Like being in a Raiders of the Lost Ark. Love the morphing objects in the HO's. Like the switch up through the HO's. This is a nice fallow up other their hidden series. Interactive map. Great art work. Well done on the jump back that got you started in this adventure. Carried out real well. Add this to the must buy list.
January 3, 2014
Terrific story line, excellent graphics - NO ghosts, spirits or magic. As usual, I played on the easiest level and with the sound turned down as far as I could - but it would not turn off. Hence my rating of 4 stars rather than 5. I think I should be able to decide if I want to listen to music or not. Good system of collectibles, and morphing objects. Highly recommended.
January 1, 2014
Great Family Game
A good game for the entire family to learn about the Hope Diamond. There are six chapters and a bonus game. The puzzles and hops are fun. You also can collect objects and Smithsonian symbols.
December 31, 2013
Nice addition to the Hidden Expedition shelf.
I've long been a fan of the Hidden Expedition games and while lacking much of the humor factor which entertained me in the Amazon, it was pretty much up to standards. If I could have taken only half-a-star off the rating for the comparatively somber journal entries, I would have.
The puzzles are engaging without being frustrating, navigation
is clear, graphics are excellent, game play is long enough to be satisfying without being cumbersome and...big plus...it actually informs!
Great relaxing game to play with family or on your own.
December 31, 2013