4,302 Posts

Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by bfgRhone on May 18, 12 12:34 AM
Hi Fishies!

What do you think of Puppetshow: Return to Joyville? We’d love to hear all about it, together with many of the other fishies in our pond! You can now share your review on our website, just pop over to the Puppetshow: Return to Joyville page here.

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Happy gaming!


4,302 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by bfgRhone on May 18, 12 12:35 AM
Hi fishies,

Just to add to the OP: This thread has been reserved for reviews only. If you have any comments or questions about someone else’s review (even if you feel that their review contains incorrect details about this game) please contact that user directly via PM instead of replying to or quoting their post.

While the reviews in this thread are first and foremost helpful to other players, they also tell us and all who were involved in making this game what you liked/disliked most, what you’d like to see more/less of in future games, etc. (As you could imagine, this feedback is very helpful! )

So to make sure that everyone who visits this thread can easily find the reviews that they’re looking for, the Moderation Team will be proactively removing any off-topic posts (i.e. non-reviews) that pop up in this thread.

For any comments and non-review posts, please feel free to create a "Comments" thread in this Game Forum if there isn't one already. You can always create a new thread for any game questions or tips.

Thank you!


9,383 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by Valdy on May 18, 12 12:49 AM
Good morning, and good afternoon, fishies of Pondyland...

This review is based on the CE version, which I played in Easy mode.

There are 3 gameplay modes.

There are 10 chapters in this game.

There is widescreen - for those who can get it.

There is voice-over.

There is a choice of custom and system cursor.

There are two different iHOS (interactive hidden object scenes): one with the usual list of objects, and the other one with the silhouettes shown in the list. This one is my favourite (we had them in the last ERS game). A lot of action is required with this HOS. Unfortunately, there weren't enough of those in this game.

The HINT button, which also works outside of the HOS, takes 60 seconds to refill in Easy mode.

Puzzles can be skipped. SKIP button fills reasonably fast.

There is a kind of Journal at the right, next to the HINT button.

The Inventory list is on the left and called TOOLS. Click on it and it opens like a fan.

There is no Map.

The graphics are of the high quality we have come to expect of ERS games.

--- --- ---

I wasn't sure whether to buy the CE, but decided to buy it anyway.

This game was far more fun and interesting than I first thought it would be. Also, I really liked the puzzles. I can't do them all, but at least I wanted to give them a go - that's how much I liked them.

I also liked the HOS - they are rather crowded, but graphics are good - I just wish they weren't coming in such quick succession, and I do wish ERS would reduce the time it takes for both the HINT and the SKIP buttons to fill. In Easy mode it shouldn't take more than 30 seconds.

Otherwise, I enjoyed this game a lot. As always, I found the characters adoring, and liked their voices as well. No complaints about those from me.

BTW, I really enjoyed the bonus game as well, which doesn't often happen. Don't ask me what it was about, have already forgotten, but it was fun.

3,873 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by gingergal on May 18, 12 6:00 AM
For those that love quite a lot of hidden object scenes (especially near the end) and also quite a lot of puzzles, I think you will enjoy this game.

I really enjoyed this game, it wasn’t anything earth shattering new but it was well done. Sometimes you don’t want a challenging game, just an enjoyable one. I felt the pace of the game was good throughout, and there was a good selection of new areas to explore.

The plot is going back in time to change history, it may be pushing it but I thought it was OK. I don’t think you could ever get lost as to where to go next as it’s very obvious so those that don’t like wandering around games should find that aspect good. The backtracking was minimum which I really appreciated. I also loved that on the most advanced mode, the no black bar tips worked and on the puzzles you had to bring up hints if you wanted them, so no hand holding.

I did find some cutscenes not that sharp in graphics and overall a mixture of grainy graphics in some areas and quite sharp in others.

Hidden object scenes

Pros -

The hidden object scenes weren’t crystal clear and some scenes were grainy, but items were defined enough, and I don’t remember any tiny objects to find. There were no grey, dark backgrounds and they all had some nice colour to them. I enjoyed some of the interactions of them as well. I don’t think I had to repeat a scene more than twice, although it would have been lovely to not repeat them at all.

ERS why don’t you become the first developer to have a skip button on hidden object scenes as well as puzzles – I think that would be a great hit!

Cons –

-Some were junkpiles on steroids.

-They were quite close together especially near the end when it seemed I was playing H O scenes back to back.

-I played on the hardest mode (3rd one) and there were still sparkles for the hidden object scenes, and they had a random click penalty both of which I hate.

Edited on 05/18/2012 at 6:03:25 AM PST

3,873 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by gingergal on May 18, 12 6:01 AM


ERS have really stepped up their puzzles in both the style and hardness of some of them. There were also loads of little interactions or mini-minigames throughout the gameplay which I love, to open doors for example instead of finding keys. Even the puzzles we know like the sliding one, had a twist on it. I loved the Hedgehog and mushroom puzzle as well as the cupid one. And I mostly forgave the back to back hidden object scenes at the end as there was a lot of puzzles.

The inventory fan was plain annoying as it took sometimes 3 clicks to get an item, as it was hidden, you couldn’t lock it and only 5 items showed.

The sort of reversed silhouette hidden object scene in the demo, that was the only one in the whole game.

I really enjoyed the very last interaction you had to do in a game.(putting out the fire)

Brilliant, it's not but it's still very enjoyable.

It is on the shorter side for time for a SE – it took me 4hrs 45mins on the hardest setting (no skipping)

17 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by lilmom966 on May 18, 12 7:08 AM
This game is one among my all time favorites.
Let me admit that I am a big fan of ERS, recently 3 of the top ten games are from them. They are redefining this genre .

That said the new one in puppetshow series, storyline itself is a beautiful twist , we are playing from the other side - like in braid - trying to understand why the witch turned villain - going back through time and trying to prevent a fire that turned the life of our poor heroine miserable ( witch in her childhood days was good like all others )

Really enjoyed the puzzles, as for HOs I am not a fan of junk pile HOs
I loved the crispy graphics & animations like always

Kudos ERS for such a cute one! I look forward for the next one in puppetshow series

214 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by addieh on May 19, 12 11:29 AM
First off, I love ERS games and I've played all 4 of the games. In 'Return to Joyville', I like the mix of the old and new in the music and the journal. The HOS scenes were fun, interesting and not cluttered. The graphics were amazing and the faces and actions of the puppets so real at times!
Some games are just meant to be played more and more, and the 'Puppetshow' series is. I loved them all.
Thanx BF and ERS!

135 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by nikma on May 20, 12 3:39 PM
bellissimo gioco,come gli altri della serie,bella storia,coinvolgente colore,grafica e musica....molto interessanti i puzzle,anche difficili,l'unica cosa che miè riuscita difficoltosa è stato il momento in ui ho avuto bisogno degli aiuti,praticamente non ci sono....forse era meglio l'acquisto della CE con la guida integrata...comunque è stato molto divertente...

733 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by qpr1 on May 30, 12 7:14 AM
i really liked (and bought) all the puppet games. but i found that i actually got bored with this one, way too many h.o.s for me

738 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by bessiegirl on Jun 1, 12 10:06 AM
Got to hand it to ERS they have terrific graphics and for the most part I enjoy playing their games. I believe I have all the Puppetshow games, however one of the many things that really ruins these games for me are the outrageously difficult mini games that almost seem impossible to solve and a skip button that takes so long you can go vacumn your home while waiting. The game requires you to remember a great deal about where you've been and what you need to do so these mini games, (and there a a lot of them), can throw you off.

HOS are easy and fun and the hint button refreshes quickly, however the hint button during the game is basically useless with the signature "there is nothing to do here at the moment" type of help. This requires you to constantly be moving through complicated rooms looking for the next place to go. Not good and a real time waster, a map would be a great help. The journal is useless also.

Almost gave up on the game in frustration because of this...but finally remembered there was a walkthrough available. I haven't had to use a walkthrough for so long I had forgotten about them. It did help me get through the rest of the game. The curser is big and cumbersome and sometimes did not give you a clear indication if there was somewhere else to go which contributed to the frustration.

It is like these games are designed to be played via the CE versions as the SE versions don't provide a great deal of assistance.

Edited on 06/01/2012 at 10:07:22 AM PST

226 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by IYBAKH on Jun 16, 12 12:57 PM
Don't miss the fun of playing this game! The ERS game developers are first-rate! There are interactive hidden object scenes; beautiful graphics; a compelling story line; fascinating surprises throughout; and all the bells and whistles we love! It was very difficult to tear myself away -- it was so engaging! One of the best!

Edited on 06/16/2012 at 1:01:35 PM PST

244 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by enigma5619 on Jun 19, 12 4:51 PM
all the puppet show games are awesome!!!!!!!!

318 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by crowtrobot on Jun 24, 12 7:51 PM
There isn't a comment thread I can see, so I will post this here:

Wasn't Felicia wheelchair bound in the other Puppetshow games?

39 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by beachmama on Jul 9, 12 1:15 PM
I think this was the hardest game I have played in years. Great fun with nice background music. Had my Ipad next to myPC in case I was in need of help. The only time was to find the 2nd snail. Thumbs up.

171 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by kelsie2 on Aug 17, 12 4:48 AM
Really had fun with this game , I am a fan of ERS ... good mini puzzles but I found some of the " how to play" instructions were not that clear , I rarely skip puzzles but had to skip the one where you matched faces to accessories because I tried and tried and could not figure out what I had to do !!!! I even went to the walkthrough and still could not get it !!! Must be dumb I guess !!! No-one else seemed to have any troubles !!! Say why are there so few comments and reviews on this game ??

1,169 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by cat52 on Oct 29, 12 10:41 AM
I have all the Puppetshow games and enjoyed them all. This one is up to par with the others.

My only complaint is philosophical and since this seems to be the last of the series I shall now voice it, since the ending did nothing to address it: many people are scarred, some as badly as Felicia - the idea that happiness is impossible when one is not beautiful seems not only shallow but also prejudicial against people who do not have or who may have lost the "gift" of beauty.

4,512 Posts

Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by Laflamme on May 18, 13 5:08 AM
Review based upon completion of the game.

This is the fourth installment of the Puppetshow series. The story is a bit out there: You are approached by the villain of the first three games to help her change the past and avoid the mess that was before. You find yourself in the past from the beginning, and the detective tells you that there was a portal. I assume that bit came in the bonus chapter of Lost Town, which I have not played (I only own the regular edition).

The Good:

+ graphics are a big step forward
+ cute evil cat puppet (in place of the mechanical spider)
+ some tough mini puzzles (had to consult the walkthrough on the Cupid one)
+ items are not placed back into repeating HO scenes
+ the hint function finally works outside of HO scenes
+ the silhouette HO scene was great...

The Neutral:

o ...but there was only one in the whole game
o one big and one medium sized mechanical spiders as "sight gag" (no interaction)
o the hint function only tells you that there is nothing to do in the current scene
o intro video has to be skipped every time you start the game

The Bad:

- the Tools fan is still annoying
- sometimes the game is a big "run around until you find the next thing to do fest"

Bottom Line: After the boring game 2 and the average third game this part is a big step in the right direction. You will need to play the first three games to understand the plot, but I can finally recommend a Puppetshow game.


Re:Reviews for Puppetshow: Return to Joyville

[Post New]by JustTheFacts on Jun 17, 13 4:18 AM
About Face For Felicia


In a delightful TWIST IN THE TALE, the latest episode in the PuppetShow series sees that evil soul-sucking woman from the last 3 games, Felicia, turning back time to prevent the accident that changed her life, and thereby altering the future for you and all her victims. Of course, to do so, she needs your help. SHOULD WE TRUST HER? Only one way to find out.

So begins the STORY in this game. It is presented in SPECTACULAR HAND DRAWN GRAPHICS with the signature texture and colour of ERS Game Studios. If you are new to the series and/or developer, you are in for a visual treat.

Can’t get quite so glowing about the MUSIC because it is, as always, REPETITIOUS. However, when the music halts for a while you get a DELIIGHTFULLY EERIE SOUND that could have come from the depths of space or time itself. VERY COOL.

The GENERAL GAMEPLAY takes us, for the most part, simply from one HO scene or puzzle to the next. There is not a lot of ADVENTURE.

There is NO MAP, which might have saved quite a lot of running back and forth within the theatre, where little alcoves are around every corner. The HINT IS USELESS outside HOS. The ubiquitous “There’s nothing you can do here.”
The HO SCENES are SLIGHTLY INTERACTIVE LISTS, with ONE exception. (see next para.) We visit each scene twice.

We’ll have to find a name for these silhouette first-one-leads-to-another HOS. I’m gonna call them PROGRESSIVE SILHOUETTE HOS. So, we have precisely one of those here, the first HO in the game, so I’m guessing this was the first test of what has now become a very popular HO style.

Fewer than the HOS, the PUZZLES are also INTERESTING. More ORIGINAL than I expect from ERS, which means they were, for me, also MORE DIFFICULT than their usual fare. This is no doubt good news to our EXPERT fishies. Not so much for me. I had to skip quite a few.

This series is made to a SPECIFIC FORMULA, for which you either love them or hate them. For me, I love them, and most of all this one. The story was a genuine surprise for me, which is nice, and I like COMFY OLD SLIPPERS.

I recommend this game!

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