Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by JustTheFacts on Jan 30, 14 1:50 AM
Excellent Game, Unique In Parts


BASED ON DEMO

FIRST IMPRESSIONS
Mystery Of The Ancients has been a pleasant series, with a couple of good 4 star games. Three Guardians is a sure-fire 5 star hit. From the exciting and beautiful opening sequences (both the one before and after the main menu), we are in for something absolutely excellent.

SIGHTS & SOUNDS
The graphics are wonderful. The cut scenes some of the best I’ve seen, and the one after the main menu gets my vote for the best of its kind ever. Throughout, the visuals are beautifully crafted and distinctive, clear and bright in the HOPs. This is a fairly dark themed game, but the colours are there to produce a splendid show. There is plenty of movement and the animation is done very well.

The voices are just fabulous. No attempt has been made at lip synch, but the acting is good, the voice very much a part of the character it represents. The background sounds are fairly unobtrusive, and the music is much the same.

WHAT’S HAPPENING?
Your niece calls you for help. She is trapped in a town besieged by ravens, and a sinister man in a raven feather coat. Her boyfriend disappeared after the ravens attacked him, and others have gone missing as well. On your (extremely dramatic) arrival, you find a virtual ghost town, the only people in sight disappearing before your eyes beneath the ravens. There is dark magic around, and you don’t know how you are going to counter it, but so far, being handy with a gun has helped! A broken amulet finds its way into your possession, and you find something you can use to defend yourself – if only you can find all the missing crystals.

GAMEPLAY
So far, the HOPs in the demo are a variation of the progressive silhouette style, with grey scale pix rather than silhouettes. Each has an easy puzzle to complete within them. They are fun rather than challenging. I can remember only a couple of mini-game outside these HOPs, although there are of course the usual locks and codes around. Something that I can’t define as mini-game or puzzle, a diorama that you must move along by choosing the correct (exceedingly obvious) objects, begins the tale of the origin of the Three Guardians.

To be continued...

Edited on 01/30/2014 at 9:02:15 AM PST


 

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by JustTheFacts on Jan 30, 14 1:51 AM
Excellent Game, Unique In Parts


GAMEPLAY Continued...


The journal is unique. It offers only character cards, which are added to as you gain information, and replayable videos. It will be interesting to see how that works out. The map is an interactive jump map, and hint is directional. So you have help for the many little errands you must run to get the items you need. This adventure component represents a larger portion of the game than other recent games have offered, but it is not difficult. There are 3 sets of difficulty options if you want a tougher challenge.

Finding pieces of the amulet increases your powers of magic in breaking down magic barriers and defending yourself against minions. One mini-game is associated with the amulet and crystals. To charge them, you must play 3 align-the-stars puzzles. These are easier than it normally is. And fun!

CE BLING!
There are 33 adorable squirrels to collect, plus 20 jigsaw pieces and 9 character figurines. These have achievements associated with them, as well as performance based ones. There is also an achievement where you must answer a simple question from the game. Each achievement gets you a piece of fresco and if you get all the achievements you can put together the final fresco to win the “ultimate” achievement.

There is a lot of concept art, very very good, and unfortunately not saveable. There are also some excellent wallpapers, and music. Heavy on the collectibles but a bit light on in the other standard CE bling! Of course, there is a bonus chapter and an in-game strategy guide.

COMBINED IMPACT
A very impressive game. The delightful artwork is combined with not-quite standard gameplay, it is relaxing and fun, and the story is intriguing. The whole package is so professionally done, I just want to sit and admire. *goofy grin*

I recommend this game!

 
Nilosh
Clownfish
Clownfish
590 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by Nilosh on Jan 30, 14 2:12 AM
Alfred Hitchcock would have had a field day with this game. A Murder of crows, missing people, an evil sorcerer and an old legend that comes to life as you uncover the secrets of Green Hill. Your adventure begins with a frantic call from your niece whose boyfriend has gone missing. You arrive in Green Hill only to discover that crows are terrorizing the town, attacking citizens and causing them to vanish. A sinister man in a black feathered cloak is behind all this and he is on a path to vengece so have fun with all of that.

The graphics are stunning, very good artwork and animations, sharp resolution and great sound effects. It shows that the developers have put tremendous work into the sound and visuals, all enhancing the game experience.

You have three settings for difficulty but unfortunately you need to set it at hardcore in order to get rid of all glints and sparkles. There seems to be a tad too much hand-holding in this game and the level of challenge is low.

A standard HOPA with hidden object scenes that require you to take action with objects and unlock puzzles within the scenes. There are a variety of mini-games but alas, most of them were quickies that really dont require too much effort on your part to solve.

There is alot going on, backtracking is involved and you have your classic adventure going on as you pick up clues along the way. Your tools include a journal which also has film reels to review, a map that will allow for travel and indicates areas of interest. You have your mystical amulet which you will need once you find all the parts of the missing crystals.

There are 34 squirrels to collect throughout the game along with 9 figurines as well; all very easy to find. There is also a list of achievements to earn.

Visually I loved everything about the game hwever I found the gameplay just too easy and predictable. Still, great effort has been put into technical effects and the story, a bit of a fairy tale does carry itself. It isnt anything we havent seen or done, but then that seems to be a rare thing these day where games are concerned.

A solid four star game with alot to offer and as I did only played the demo, I think that it will be a favorite amogst those who enjoy the storybook tale of the three guardians. I just wish there was a bit more punch in the gameplay which is really why I cannot wholeheartedly give away the extra star. To be honest I found the game all together a bit forgettable but perhaps enjoyable for the here and now.


 
angelfish106
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1,378 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by angelfish106 on Jan 30, 14 5:17 AM
I was stunned when the demo ended; where did that 60 minutes go!! I was so immersed in this game that the time just flew past and I loved every minute of it

Fabulous graphics that will make some other devs sit up and take notice, some very interactive HOS (only came across one list type in the demo), lots of puzzles which are fun rather than frustrating, good voice-overs, a map which transports and indicates things to do and collectibles all make for a terrific game. The story is excellently told too; if you were scared by the Hitchcock movie 'The Birds', this game will bring back reminders of that!

I played on advanced mode and didn't see any sparkles; perhaps there is a little more hand holding than some might like but I found the game was neither too easy nor too hard; it was just right for me

Miles better than recent CE's, this game is an immediate buy. I give it 5

 
Poutoule
Archerfish
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41,630 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by Poutoule on Jan 30, 14 6:35 AM

Edited on 02/02/2014 at 1:17:56 PM PST


 
manysaying
Seahorse
Seahorse
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Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by manysaying on Jan 30, 14 7:43 AM

Edited on 02/02/2014 at 1:18:17 PM PST


 
bwake47
Starfish
Starfish
40 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by bwake47 on Jan 30, 14 8:19 AM

Edited on 01/31/2014 at 1:23:31 PM PST


 
TigerJo714
Stingray
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5,122 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by TigerJo714 on Jan 30, 14 8:28 AM

Edited on 01/31/2014 at 1:24:43 PM PST


 

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by NancySusan on Jan 30, 14 8:49 AM
To my surprise, I rather liked this game, and I've never bought any of the others in the series. The only criticism is here I am, thoughtfully playing away in what appears to be some kind of old European village, set in early 2013 (thank you, thank you, thank you, no need to fake up screamingly inauthentic costumes), even if the voice actors have a variety of okay to fairly bad attempts at regular people from the U.S./Canada, as well as, possibly, a Darth Vader imitation, when suddenly into all this late in the demo comes a really bad and totally out-of-place "southern" accent -- wow. In addition to being a trained singer, I'm also a trained actor with a background both in history and costume, and some games really drive me wild. This one was doing okay until the really bad and why did they have the actor do this, southern accent. Just mentioning -- why bother with something like this, devs.? Anyway, I liked the collectibles, which I'm always a fan of, and the game, while not super-challenging, is intriguing and interesting enough, that I will probably buy it. I had absolutely no technical problems with it. Some of the mini-games were different and fun, and it's not overwhelmingly stuffed with classic HOP's, which makes me happy, plus the find the item for a task to find another item, etc. puzzles were also fun. I would definitely recommend checking the game out and I think it will do well for many people.

 
robester
Seahorse
Seahorse
25 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by robester on Jan 30, 14 8:50 AM
I was excited to play the game, but gave up the demo within a few minutes. It's a tiny thing but greatly frustrating [and clearly noone else has the problem, or I am missing something obvious which is entirely possible]. Whoever designed the inventory box also must not have had the problem. Whenever I try to get the item to the far right, I get the map. When I try to get the map I get the item to the far \right. As I say, a tiny thing, but frustrating enough to take the enjoyment out of the game play. Ah well.

 
bfgWendwater
Dogfish
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Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by bfgWendwater on Jan 30, 14 9:01 AM
Hello Everyone,

Thanks for getting the reviews thread started JustTheFacts.

Welcome to the reviews thread! Please feel free to post your thoughts and feedback on Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition 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.

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bpurdum2
Minnow
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264 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by bpurdum2 on Jan 30, 14 9:27 AM
Everyone so far really likes the game but sadly I do not. There too many mini games. I don't care for the HOS where I have to find items to locate other items and mini games in the HOS. I think I will pass on this one. It is too much work for me. I like to relax and enjoy the game which I do not with this one.

 

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by daisyduck352 on Jan 30, 14 2:09 PM
Loved the game and it has everything I enjoy. The puzzles were great and liked the HOG's and had puzzles included in them too. Graphics were great and story and music were good too. Hints reloaded fast, had a map and you could click on it and it would take you to the place you needed to finish. Give this 5 out of 5 stars..

Edited on 01/30/2014 at 2:10:19 PM PST


 
dancemom1
Angelfish
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1,198 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by dancemom1 on Jan 30, 14 2:21 PM
Afternoon all. Another nice addition to the Mystery of the Ancients series. I have the first two and thoroughly enjoyed them both. Like the others, this one has very nice graphics, but the cut scenes were a bit fuzzy. Seems like everyone is doing that these days...must be for effect. Other than that, the colors were very nice and clear. Game play was good, with no problems at all. Music was nice and mellow and seemed to move with what is happening in the scene at the time. I liked the story, a bit different with the addition of the crows.

The jump map is a little crowded, but works well and is used often. Locking inventory bar is great and appreciated, but I did not care for the constant moving of the item within the bar when you are looking or clicking on something to use. Hint system is helpful and fills rather quickly. Voice overs weren't bad, but some didn't fit the setting or time period, e.g. Sheriff, and you could not click through the dialog if you read faster than they speak. Very nice sound FX, appropriate for what is happening at the time.

SG seemed to be missing a few steps here and there, e.g. shoot rifle...at what? or use glass cutter...on what? If you are going to have an SG, it needs to be specific with where and what, not just the last step to accomplish a task. HOPs were interesting and quite easy. Rather than straight silhouettes, the items were a single color to clearly identify what they are. You find one to complete another and there are mini puzzles within the HOP...more than there are outside the HOPs. Did not care for the storybook puzzles, as they were extremely simple and moved very slowly.

There is a lot to do in this game and you are constantly on the move. You have 33 squirrels and 9 collector items to find. Others have mentioned jigsaw pieces, but I haven't seen any. Guess I'll go back and try to find them.

This is not a bad game, not very challenging, but interesting enough to make me want to add it to my collection of ever growing CE's. This will probably appeal to all levels of players. I do not give 5 stars easily and I down-graded this one because of the SG and the same old, same old HOPs throughout the game (so far). They need to change from straight HOPs to silhouettes to whatever to keep your interest.

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.

 
sunnyglow
Clownfish
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804 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by sunnyglow on Jan 30, 14 3:49 PM
This is another game in the Guardian series. This game can be described as Hitchcock's movie "The Birds" entering the gaming world or maybe they a found a use for the leftover ravens from the movie about Poe "The Raven." To me, the story is a little complex and hard to follow. But, then again, this game could have made me a temporary "birdbrain." Your niece's boyfriend has disappeared in the forest while they were on a picnic . You receive a letter from your niece stating that terrible things are happening - all seeming to relate to ravens (crows), a man who turns into crows (or whatever). You receive an amulet which is broken. Once restored it will allow to you to combat this evil.

Some on the site really like this game; however, I do not. The graphics on my computer are very blurry. The characters look sticklike and cartoonish. I am not an expert in acting, but what is with all the different accents? Let's see. You have a story taking place in a European town with a redneck, Southern sheriff. Yeah, that really makes sense. Then you are threatened by a menacing guy with a Slavic accent. The rest of the characters seem to have American accents.

There are only 3 levels to the game and you cannot customize your game. This seems to be predominantly a HOPA game and you do not have the option to choose another game in place of the HOP scenes. The HOP scenes require some interaction and you must find an item and perform a task before you can move on. I have found few puzzles in this game. You basically go from HOPA scene to HOPA scene picking up inventory to use in the game. You collect statues and squirrels. To me, this game is slow moving, way too easy and very b-o-r-i-n-g! Since I do not like this game, I will not purchase it - ever. I give it 3 stars out of 5 stars for a CE because I know there are those out there who like this type of game. This game is designed for those who like predominantly HOPA games with very easy interactive puzzles and actions throughout the game. I thought yesterday's SE much better than this CE and also much cheaper. Paraphrasing a quote from "The Raven" by Poe: "Nevermore" will I continue to play this game.

Edited on 01/30/2014 at 3:51:27 PM PST


 
steve_san
Clownfish
Clownfish
586 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by steve_san on Jan 30, 14 6:33 PM

Raven Story Too Much to "Swallow"

Terrible patchwork story of amulets, little red riding hood, the birds, the (red-eyed) raven, black- smoke bogeymen, disappearing people, and over the top drama. Oh, and I forgot the flaming enchanted fox. All in one game, and that was just the trial period. Sorry, this was just too much for me to "swallow."

Add to that the utterly simplistic and easy game play, and mini-games which were far from puzzling.

No, pretty art work is not enough, this one fails to deliver. If you must try it, I recommend you unscrew your head before playing.


 
shripch
Dogfish
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1,952 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by shripch on Jan 30, 14 9:47 PM
While I cannot say "wow", I can't say "yuck" either. This is good on so many levels, but mixed in with the good moments are moments of real irritation. I agree with the reviewer who sited the silly voice overs. The "southern" is particularly annoying, but hey, it might be just fine for some. I love the art work, and the game play is smooth and flows easily. And unlike some who like brain buster puzzles, I don't. A little challenge is just right for me, but these are just a bit too easy. But so far, I have enjoyed the IHOPS. Different enough to pique my interest. And the cool, screaming crows! Love them! So a buy, but a lukewarm one.

 
Tiger2010
Whale Shark
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16,624 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by Tiger2010 on Jan 31, 14 12:38 PM
WHOLE GAME AND BONUS

This is a very nice, very involved game which I would describe as mainly a Puzzle Adventure with some hidden object scenes.

The reason is simply that I found a staggering 51 puzzles in the main game and only 17 HOS. That may sound like an awful lot of puzzles, but they aren't overly difficult and some not even very long.

They are divided between the usual type we find 'in game' and those that are part of some hidden object scenes, as well as those you complete when charging/using your Amulet.

Throughout the game you find shards to repair three gemstones in your Amulet, which neutralise different enemies at certain points. You also find animal tokens to complete the Amulet, which you will come across quite naturally as you progress. The teleport map is nicely drawn, showing images of scenes already visited for ease of reference. The only annoying thing for me was that every time I opened it, the map scrolled automatically right back down to the bottom of the screen, i.e. the beginning of the game. This happened only in the main game, however, and it is a 'one world map' meaning you can go back anywhere, anytime.

You have two types of collectibles - 33 squirrels (one per scene) and 9 figurines to complete a collection (much like the bobbleheads we saw elsewhere not so long ago). The latter are characters from the game and quite cleverly hidden. Some are in pop up windows with something else to do, so if you miss one of those you can't open said window again to go back to get it. I missed Poseidon in that way.

The H0S are a mixture of traditional lists with some interaction and what I call 'domino silhouettes' as you find one silhouette item you then use somewhere else to get the next one. There are no alternative options of playing Match 3 or Mahjong.

One surprising puzzle that keeps popping up is the 'join the dots'. I've never seen that before in these games and it reminds me of my childhood. In all fairness, whilst they are fun to do and aren't exactly challenging, the devs did try to put a couple of variations on them to make them slightly more difficult. They are a good way to get the 'Solve X number of puzzles without reading the instructions' achievement.

I felt the main game was finished adequately, but there is a teaser at the end which may point toward a sequel.

The bonus, whilst related, is a different story. CONTINUED...

 
Tiger2010
Whale Shark
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16,624 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by Tiger2010 on Jan 31, 14 12:44 PM
CONTINUED....

In the bonus you no longer have your Amulet (instead you have a Soul Bottle that collects spirits) and all collectibles are done and dusted in the main game.

I spent well over an hour on the bonus and I thought it was very well done; almost better than the main game (for me). There aren't any replays of HOPs or Puzzles in the Extras or any Making of videos; just the usual wallpapers, music etc.

Also, in the bonus the HOP to puzzle ratio balances out a little with 9 puzzles and 7 HOPs.

I find it impossible to put a time line on how long the main game took me, because I kept having to leave it for work reasons. Also, because there are so many puzzles and some of us will skip them and others persist doggedly until they're all solved, it can be difficult to tell.

I can say, though, that it's a long game with a complex story line, to say the least and a satisfactory ending and thoroughly enjoyable bonus chapter (for me anyway, but do try before you buy).

 
BlackWaterRules
Shark
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10,153 Posts

Re:Review for Mystery Of The Ancients: Three Guardians Collector's Edition

[Post New]by BlackWaterRules on Feb 2, 14 5:15 PM
Based on the Demo

This game has a great sound track, great music, and great voiceovers. The graphics and special effects are beautiful and very detailed.

The storyline is interesting and intriguing. Your niece's fiancee disappears while they are in the woods. There is a bright pink light that coincides with his disappearance. She calls you to help her. On your way there (by train) the train crashes. When you finally arrive you realize that there have been many disappearances in that area and it appears that there is a sinister and scary over abundance of crows.

The hidden object games are challenging and fun, some of them shadow pictures, some interactive, all engaging. The mini puzzles are challenging and fun and the directions are clear and easy to understand. There is a skip button and reset button.

You get a journal, a strategy guide, a map, and an ancient amulet to assist you.

There are lots of collectibles and achievements. There are 33 squirrels to collect, 9 statuettes, puzzle parts, and something to keep you busy every minute.

This game is a lot of bang for the buck, well worth the CE price.


 
 
 
 
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