Spirits of Mystery: The Silver Arrow
Not Actually As Bad As I Thought!
Everyone knows I've been extremely critical of ERS as of late regarding their games being too cute and fuzzy, and not allowing something for we male players, so given the history of this series, I was a little hesitant to try this one. When the SE came out, I thought I'd better try it, so I did. I have to say it was a lot better than I expected, it still falls well short of a great game.
The story, which I was expecting to be all cute, magical and cuddly, was not what I was expected. To my surprise, I actually found it exciting, and I'm a little curious to see how it ends! The story starts off a little slow, and is a bit boring to begin with, but it builds up and, at the end of the demo, I wanted more! There are not many twists and turns, but it's still rather enjoyable.
The story goes like this: The prince shoots his silver arrow and it goes in your window, meaning you are his new bride according to the tradition. But before you can take it, someone steals it! So now, you have to get it back (with the help of the prince, of course).
I especially enjoyed the villain(s) in this story. The first was some kind of shapeshifter, which was a bit different and nice. However, one element of the story I didn't like was how the game didn't come up with a name for the main character and decided to use your name instead. When you're a guy, to be called ?Princess _____? is a bit insulting!
The gameplay, to be honest, was a bit sub-par. This is the first time I'm going to say this, but the HOS were a bit boring. They were easy, as usual, but I don't fancy every HOS except for one being silhouette. I want to see more junkpile. I would have enjoyed the game more had there been more junkpile HOS and less silhouette HOS. The one HOS that wasn't silhouette was a matching scene, where you had to match two objects to each other. This was a little more challenging and very enjoyable. More of these would be nice too.
The puzzles were a little bit hard for me. I played one but skipped the rest. They were nothing new, but they were still fun to attempt. The puzzles will be a bit challenging to most people, but will probably be easy to experts. Those who skip all the puzzles should be warned that your gameplay time will be cut by quite a bit.
I'm usually annoyed by cute fuzzy animals and the animal in this game, Ramos, is no exception. Its voice just drove me mental, and I couldn't wait until it stopped talking. I think it's about time ERS gave up on the cute and fuzzy and gave us more of the dark and gloomy.
This is pretty much your standard HOPA. If you've played any HOPA before, it should be pretty easy to navigate. Experienced players will have no trouble making their way through the game. I would also recommend this for beginners.
An ERS game brings us the same old ERS graphics. Don't let my usage of ?same old? confuse you, because I rather liked them. The art is well drawn and detailed, especially the character designs. Each scene was clear.
I usually don't have a problem with voice-overs, but in this game I do. The voices of the Prince and Ramos were not done well. Ramos's voice, as I mentioned before, was incredibly annoying. Phillip's voice was terrible. Basil was frequently mispronounced as ?Bay-zul?. I have never heard it pronounced that way in my life.
3 modes of difficulty- Casual, Advanced and Hard. In recent games, ERS gave us a ?custom? difficulty setting, and I was a little disappointed that it wasn't here. I played Casual.
Hint/skip- both recharge fairly fast for Casual. The hint is useful outside outside HOS.
Map- the map is interactive and extremely helpful. It lets you know when the location is complete and where there is a task to perform.
Diary- Used to keep track of events. It's used fairly often.
Ramos- This is your animal helper, and it's really annoying, as I've mentioned countless times before.
So, I have to say, this isn't all that bad, but the best I can do is three stars. I'll happily recommend the trial, but this isn't one I'm going to buy.
January 14, 2014
What happened to Prince Therien?
I thought Mortis was destroyed by the magician Brishare.
This review for trial only.
Didn't capture me like the others. Too bad.
I have many of the other games.
January 10, 2014
Just Didn't Like It
I usually don't post reviews, but this game.. ugh..I really didn't like it. The storyline was good, but I didn't like all of the "get this and put it here" things in the HOS.
If you like that kind of thing, you'll love this game. If you're looking for a plain old Hidden Object game, then this is not for you.
January 16, 2014