Nilosh
Clownfish
Clownfish
590 Posts

Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by Nilosh on Jan 20, 14 2:09 AM
Our story takes us to a manor in Scotland deserted by the living but occupied by the dead. As a private investigator, your case involves searching for the missing heir the old estate and upon arrival, you find yourself involved with a group who call themselves the Fellowship of the Thistle who are sworn to fight darkness. Get ready to battle the dead in Shadow Shelter.

I was excited at the opening scene when the narrator begins his story and I found myself facing dark graphics, relatively good artwork and an atmosphere of creepiness that I usually love in a game. However as I progressed I found the darkness was overwhelming, preventing me to appreciate the sites and sounds around me. Main menu offers you two levels of difficulty which you can adjust during play. You have your inventory list at the top of the screen which I don’t particularly like, a journal with a list of objectives and notes as well as a very crude map that does allow you to jump from one scene to another.

I encountered one Hidden Object scene after another which in my case is a bit much. The scenes are dark and packed making many objects very difficult to spot. There are two types of hidden object scenes, one that gives you a standard list of twelve items and the other are small hand drawn pictures of items to find, which also proved to be difficult to make out. There is the element of surprise as things jump out at you and sound effects are not bad. Darkness prevails in this game and after a while I found myself just clicking away at anything and usually got lucky. As you find yourself wandering about, clicking at objects and trying to use them, you find yourself lost in the game and the story pretty much gets lost as well.

After about 45 minutes of game play I found myself tired and a bit annoyed. I did enjoy the odd special effects; the life-like creepy kid that pos up from nowhere and wild animals jumping at you. But after a while too many hidden object scenes, the overall poor lighting and the ambiguity of what you are trying to do just got to me. I really did not come across any mini-games and if I did, I probably could not see them properly.

Shadow Shelter is a fair attempt as what might have been an excellent game. I pretty much played through it to know that it really is not for me. The game seems to lose itself in the dark and unfortunately lost me as well.

Edited on 01/20/2014 at 9:09:53 AM PST


 
tookat
Flounder
Flounder
2,099 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by tookat on Jan 20, 14 3:08 AM
Thank you for the great review Nilosh.
I am about to go demo and see if I can handle that many dark scenes and HOGs because it sounds like an intriguing game.

I wish Devs would learn to put in a gamma correct so that those of us with computers whose screens run dark, can correct what the game sees.

 
edmee1947
Clownfish
Clownfish
629 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by edmee1947 on Jan 20, 14 4:28 AM
this is the most inventive game i have played for long!and i have to say that music is well suited with the atmosphere;puzzles are not too much hard,the player is not handled,when a room is unlocked there sparkles on puzzles and HO but after that,you have to think and remember where what you find is necessary;there is a map of where you are and if there is something to do more,you have list of task and when you find clues,the papers are gathered on an only page where you can see them
hidden objects scenes are various,and in focus view not so dark and objects easy enough to find
the advice i'll give(because i was stuck for long before i found!) is to search in each place the arrows showing the different exit!sometimes on farthest edges of pictures!
some puzzles were never seen before(the most of them!) and i have played more than 300 BF games!
in hidden objects scenes none of the things are out of time!no baseball bat or pinapples,or things like that !every objects fits with the old time of abandonned mansion!the best idea for me was the hand!just remember of Adam's family!and you have to return to learn the story!helpful animated hand!
devs,for me you have done good job,and i'll wait for the next game from you with impatience!this game is worth to be a CE than the last i played!

Edited on 01/20/2014 at 4:31:51 AM PST


 
bfgDeveron
Dogfish
Dogfish
1,934 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by bfgDeveron on Jan 20, 14 9:08 AM
Hello Everyone,

Welcome to the reviews thread! Please feel free to post your thoughts and feedback on Shadow Shelter here. We appreciate the time you take to put your reviews together, and I know other gamers and the developers do as well. We just have a few guidelines to keep in mind when posting. Our goal with these is to keep the thread tidy, easy to navigate and helpful.

Review Guidelines

1) Be sure to keep your reviews on-topic. Reviews in this thread should only be commenting on Shadow Shelter.
2) Be respectful of the reviewers. Please keep in mind our Forum Rules and be respectful of our reviewers. They take the time to post here to be helpful. Please do not review the reviews of others.
3) Do not respond to someone else’s reviews with questions or comments If you have any feedback about a review, or you feel that a review contains incorrect details about the game, please contact the poster directly via PM.
4) Do not review developers. While we do appreciate your feedback, we’d ask that you keep your posts in this thread dedicated to the specific game at hand.

*Moderators will be removing any content in this thread that is not a review.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to PM a Moderators,

bfgDeveron

 
pjplanner
Guppy
Guppy
157 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by pjplanner on Jan 20, 14 10:45 AM
This game showed so much promise with its inventive and scary graphics and sound effects. However, the constant tramping from room to room when you change location and the incessant HOS made this a no buy for me. So many HOS!! you lose the story line and lose your bearings. What a shame! I thought this was going to be an exciting new game but it became very boring very quickly.

 
ttomm46
Guppy
Guppy
123 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by ttomm46 on Jan 20, 14 10:47 AM
Time for something new.....fighting the forces of darkness..Same old same old....
Dark screen...How about an HOG that is just a good mystery without the occult trappings?

There was a game on here once called
Murder Island: Secret of Tantalus: I believe..Great mystery with bright scenes..a sequel would be great and save eye strain..


Edited on 01/20/2014 at 10:50:24 AM PST


 
layzeedaisy
Minnow
Minnow
221 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by layzeedaisy on Jan 20, 14 10:53 AM
When I started the demo it appeared to be just my kind of game, a little bit dark and creepy, and set within a lovely old castle. Unfortunately, very soon, the dark was also overshadowed by mistiness making it doubly difficult to navigate or see.

The beginning was excellent, voiceover good, music very appropriate. I got to the door of the castle and suddenly found myself dumped underground. Huh? No verbal communication nor written screen explanation.

From there I lurched from one HO to another. They piled one on top of the other unrelentingly. I didn't mind the hand drawn items to find, that was quite interesting and made a change. Never saw a puzzle during the whole demo.

Moving from room to room was a pain. Each time you have to look at little footsteps tramping around on the map before you get anywhere.

The weird little boy popped up now and again. Why?

I played to the end of the demo and although I'd like to know what the story was and how it ends, I just can't bring myself to buy a load of hidden object scenes, lack of game purpose, and screwed up eyesight.

The map was very odd and extremely irritating. Also, having mistiness over dark and gloomy really doesn't work.

The lack of information was most annoying. I found myself collecting 12 feathers - but that was only because I'd seen 1 of 12 in the inventory when I picked up the first feather. The inventory was packed full with items and when the cursor went near the item a description appeared in a large box, most offputting.

To say I'm disappointed would be an understatement. This had such potential with what appeared at first to be a really great game.These devs could give lessons in how to ruin a really great story line with lousy game play.


 
gamblebug
Herring
Herring
341 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by gamblebug on Jan 20, 14 11:13 AM
I really like this spooky game.It was well worth the coupon and it hasn't froze up on me like cruel collections the wish hotel did after I bought it anfd haven't been able to play since.I love everything about this one and it's Monday,thanks BF

 

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by kris_cross48 on Jan 20, 14 11:22 AM
Good afternoon in the dead of winter!

We have our usual mixed bag of reviews. Reading them this morning I almost didn't even give it a try..especially with all the tech. issues. once downloaded, I remembered this game from Beta-ing it.
I panned it at that time. I couldnt get past the roaring animals and that was it for me.

Well, I was wrong. This really is a long, well thought out game that you have to warm up to and that takes the full demo.
I like the graphics, they are dark but appropriately so for an haunted old house. ( I love haunted house stuff). The dev team even offers up fireflies to lighten a dark corner, now isn't that thoughtful? Course, you have to catch them first.

The one bugaboo I didn't like was the slow loading between scenes. Perhaps that's my old XP and that is not an issue for you, but sitting there twiddling thumbs watching footsteps on a blueprint...which is moving..now I know why I felt seasick for a second..is not a lot of fun and it seems very old school. Once your in the next place, life is good again. my suggestion, don't stare at your screen watching the footprints.

In all, this was..well is fun. I grabbed with a coupon so all is fair and wonderful with the world.
Good graphics, very nice art work (the shadows were right on) , music fine, programming a wee slow. Loved The Thing ( the hand a la The Addams Family)
kris

 

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by JustTheFacts on Jan 20, 14 11:33 AM
“Out There” HOG
Not For The Faint-Hearted!



BASED ON DEMO

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Did you watch the video? Brilliant! And a good indicator of the game, which is perhaps the best standalone I have seen in months of pretty good standalone SEs. But there’s nothing ‘nice’ about it. This is full-on creepy horror, done in a very different style to any of the other games that claim to be dark and eerie.

One thing you need to know up front is that it is pure HOG, and very easy, but there are custom settings available. There are also things that may disturb some people. Including really scary mounted hunters’ trophies that you must ‘rekill’. And a disembodied hand. And a boy who looks normal but is creepier still.

SIGHTS & SOUNDS
Although dark, there is nothing difficult about seeing this game. The graphics are as crisp and clean as the best of them. There is darkness around the edges of the HOPs, but not where you are looking for items, which maintains the atmosphere while not interfering with the game. Items are realistically depicted, and appear to be relevant to the era and story. Everything is very dingy. Unusually, the inventory panel is on the top.

There are some very well done cut scenes, as well as some sepia film drawings on the history. These are recorded in your notebook, along with tasks, and notes that include recipes, formulae and codes.

When it comes to music, this game gets 10/10 for originality and atmosphere. Some of the music is straight out of a “rave”, hard-hitting, loud and claustrophobic. Most is much quieter, but it nevertheless very original in style and maintains the ominous mood. The voiceovers, although only used for narration, are excellent and very professional. Being indoors, there’s little in the way of ambient sound, but the hollow ringing of footsteps in an empty building.

To be continued...

 

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by JustTheFacts on Jan 20, 14 11:35 AM
“Out There” HOG
Not For The Faint-Hearted!

[b]GAMEPLAY

As a HOG, this game has very little adventure play. Although you can wander around all over the mansion, most of the items and info you need to progress are found through completing HOPs. These come in several types. There are word lists, item sketches and multiples. There is also an informal kind of HOP where you will find a bunch of one item in a location, like feathers, and will need to collect them, although you are not given any instruction to do so. They’ll just be lying around in suspiciously large numbers. Further into the game, I noticed some of the HOPs included interaction, which you have to work out yourself. Each HOP is visited once only.

There are mini-games, not really puzzles. These include things like using a distillery to obtain an item, or putting together a machine. These tasks are usually helped by a pic of the item/s needed to proceed. Nothing like the sort of thing you need a skip button for, and there isn’t one. Hint, too, only tells you “nothing to do here”. There is an interactive jump map, but I found it mostly unnecessary. There is also a ‘map’ that shows up as the filler when the game is loading (which happens too often), and is not meant to show where you are moving from/to.

COMBINED IMPACT
For some time I’ve pondered why no developer had made a quality game with a decent story and high end production values that was pure HOG. It seemed that only HOPA players could look forward to the best art and imagination. Well, here is a well-packaged HOG with genuine quality and a specific appeal.

I recommend this game!

Edited on 01/20/2014 at 11:36:20 AM PST


 
bpurdum2
Minnow
Minnow
264 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by bpurdum2 on Jan 20, 14 12:01 PM
I played the demo and undecided about buying it. I have to use the hint button when I cannot see objects in the HOS. The hint button takes too long to recharge. I timed it at 5 MINUTES. This is too long. There is a map that pops at times when changing rooms which is very irritating since it does nothing for the game. I was hoping I would like the game enough to use one of my punch rewards for it but will have to think some more before buying.

 
LadyBlue0321
Minnow
Minnow
217 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by LadyBlue0321 on Jan 20, 14 12:26 PM
I played the demo, and thought I'd like it. Yes, all HOG, dark scenes, Inventory at the top (which annoys me), no jump map AND the biggest aggravation, is the loading screen, which takes over 7 seconds, while you twiddle your thumbs. Now that might not sound so bad at first, but when you take a mis-step or have to go back to another scene, it all adds up. Makes this game drag too much.

 
tesamoine
Herring
Herring
387 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by tesamoine on Jan 20, 14 12:37 PM
Here we have a soft release about a haunted house. I could not resist a demo on this one. You are called in as a detective to find out what is going on in a house that has supposedly been empty for 40 years. The game is not your standard ERS cookie cutter game. You need to think out of the box here (OK, sometimes way out of the box). There are many many more HOS that I like in this game, both list and silhouette but they are easy and the items are found quickly. You get a very very useful journal which will give you tasks (these are invaluable in making your way through the game), a map which I haven't found too useful yet, and the story of the demons. You get 4 modes of play including custom. If you choose custom, the hint recharge button moves to the right to make the hint recharge quickly (as opposed to most other games). It is a dark game. After all, you are in a deserted haunted house. However, it is not the grainy dark that makes things difficult to see and it didn't bother me. Some screens also scroll to the left or right. You need to move your cursor down the side of the screen to find the arrow to open up that next scene. I personally enjoy games like this. You really need to click around the rooms to find things. Not everything is indicated by a hand or magnifying glass. Something may just be lying around looking out of place. This game has loaded fine and has been running fine for me without any glitches. There is a period of 15 or 20 seconds of load time between scenes. I love these creepy games and the music that they do play occassionally matches the theme. I recommend this one, but do demo for yourself as we all have different tastes. PS... you DO NOT get a fuzzy cute helper in this game

 

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by daisyduck352 on Jan 20, 14 12:45 PM
When I first read all the comments thought this was not a good game... but it turned out just the opposite. It started off with a bang and have enjoyed it very much. Like that the graphics are on a drab side as it's supposed to be spooky.. The IHOG's are different has tasks you need to do and a map. Think the developer did a good job. Give this a 3 out of 5 stars..

 
Tamlin55
Squid
Squid
69 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by Tamlin55 on Jan 20, 14 1:11 PM
I don't often chime in here, but I have to come down on the positive side of the reviews. I thought this game was a little out of the ordinary in terms of game play and overall design and spookiness. I actually jumped a couple of times, jaded player that I am. I like the difference of the hidden object puzzles -- you often find things that you use to solve puzzles in the various rooms you pass through in this creepy mansion. So you do have to puzzle some things out. The journal and the map are helpful to keep you on track, and there is also a helping hand along the way .I've just reached the second floor. I liked it so much I used one of my free game coupons to obtain. I recommend this creepy little charmer! At least, give it a try and decide for yourself. It might just be your cup of tea.

 
VTCT
Clownfish
Clownfish
591 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by VTCT on Jan 20, 14 4:35 PM
Like story line, hate being so dark & no skip button - will not finish it for now. Time uninstall it.

You need to have more people try this game instead of putting out just put something out.

 
sunnyglow
Clownfish
Clownfish
804 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by sunnyglow on Jan 20, 14 4:43 PM
A nice little creepster from a new dev whose games I have never seen on this site. Since it is a good game (not great, so don't get grandiose ideas here) , I shall give them a nickname, which I never assign to new devs. I hereby anoint them "Never a Softie," mainly because this is one scary, eerie game and a little challenging as well. I don't agree with most people on this site (and when do I ever?? Huh?), but I thought it very "cool" and creepily awesome. You have frightening demon dolls and even a red-eyed demon child. Boy, that little boy is very disturbing. There is something just unsettling about evil children. This all the more disturbing because this castle is dark, dreary and supposedly deserted. These devs should go in to the horror movie business. They would probably make better movies than some of the ones being made now. This is a game which should be played in the dark by yourself. That would be chilling, to say the least!

Another Knights Templar tale (in this case it is called "Fellowship of the Thistle") set in Scotland. You are a detective called in to fight evil in a dark, gloomy castle. Why they didn't call in an exorcist and a paranormal group is beyond me. You get to choose from 3 levels of play and even get to customize the game, which is unheard of in an SE. I do agree with others on the site that there are way too many HOG scenes. However, they are interactive and silhouette and not just junk piles. This is a very dark game literally. The theme is dark as well as the scenes. I thought the scene with the crane opening up to show an inventory item and guess what? an actual chemical formula was pretty awesome. Somebody developing this game took some college level chemistry - I am impressed. Although it is a HOPA, it does contain some elements of an adventure game. It was difficult to find the bottles that went into the wine case. The inventory is at the top of the screen, which some adventure games do have but most people on this site didn't like this feature. There is voice and very bizarre "muzac."

For an SE, it is well done. I will use a coupon to purchase and play it tonight. It is not a very long game. Unlike others, I give this a 5 stars out of 5 stars for an SE. It would have made a good CE if it were further developed.

 
fraziely
Guppy
Guppy
137 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by fraziely on Jan 20, 14 6:42 PM
I've been in the pond a number of years and rarely feel it necessary to review a game mainly because our regular reviewers do such a wonderful job at it. But, for some reason I wanted to put in my two cents on this game...

I really like this game! It is a refreshing change from the usual and for that reason alone, I burnt a coupon on it. It' has a raw, unpolished feel to it. But not to the extent that would've made it a no-buy for me.

It is quite dark, a bit clunky mechanically especially from a navigation stand-point (multiple load screens, excruciatingly slow hint refresh rates, etc.). But, it is a very solid effort and I am enjoying it nonetheless.

Edited on 01/20/2014 at 7:06:43 PM PST


 
ibn1984
Guppy
Guppy
107 Posts

Re:Game Reviews for Shadow Shelter

[Post New]by ibn1984 on Jan 20, 14 8:04 PM
Interesting game. So far my only con is the loading between scenes. It's worth using a a game coupon, on a Monday, and getting an extra punch on my card. Of course there is no walkthrough. I usually don't get SE without one, I hope I don't get stuck, but I must see how this game turns out.

 
 
 
 
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