Posts created by NIMHURCHU

 posted in Malice: Two Sisters on May 17, 13 12:50 PM
This is a decent game for $2.99.

There is only one mode of play.

There are no voice overs.

There is a diary, with the story and clues.

There is a map, but I found it to be useless. It doesn't indicate your current location, or areas of interest.

HOS: There are 15 interactive HOS. I thought that they were well-drawn, and clear.
After about 7 misclicks, the screen fills with steam, and it took a little too long for it to clear, in my opinion.

Hints: Refill in 1 min. The hint button is helpful outside of HOS. However, I would have preferred arrows for navigating. Even when the hint told me where to find a needed item, I still had some trouble locating the place.

Puzzles: There are 10 puzzles. They are the typical slider, pipes, jigsaw etc. Most were quite simple, although some were time consuming, for me. They can be skipped in I min.

Overall, this was a mediocre game, that could have been quite good. The cut scenes were blurry, but most of the scenes were crisp and clear. There were a few that were hazy with washed-out colours that I did not like at all. The story was interesting, but so much in the story line was left unexplored, and the ending was abrupt and unsatisfactory. However, for $2.99, there were enough interesting HOS, puzzles and interactions to keep me entertained for almost 3 hrs. As always, try for yourself.
 posted in Legends of Atlantis: Exodus on May 14, 13 6:37 PM
Well, I ran out of space.......and I do want to get back to this very addictive game.
I recommend doing the 1 hr trial, at least. This is not my preferred genre, but it is a wonderful change for me. If you're looking for an easy and entertaining introduction to the TM/Strategy genre, this is a great game, IMHO
 posted in Legends of Atlantis: Exodus on May 14, 13 6:28 PM
Hi Bpup I agree!

Note: This review is based on 2 hrs 45 mins of gameplay. With an advertised 50+ levels in this game, I expect to get another 8 hrs of fun in Casual mode. In Challenge Mode...oh dear....I had better learn some TM/Strategy skills.

This is the first TM/Strategy game that I have purchased and I am absolutely thrilled with this $2.99 deal. I normally play HOPAs, with a few Match 3, straight HOGS and decorator type games. I thought that I would feel stressed with this game, but I was willing to try and am so delighted that I did!

There are 2 modes of play: Casual and Challenge. You cannot change mode mid-game, but you can play in challenge mode under the same profile and not lose your progress in casual mode. I have played 17 levels in casual mode, and 1 level in challenge mode, just to test the waters. I did not lose any progress in either mode when I chose to switch.

Casual Mode: There is no timer. It is very relaxing and helped me as a novice to learn more effective strategies without having to restart the level.

Challenge mode: There is a timer. Challenge mode offers 18 achievements.

There are no voice-overs.

HOS: I came across only 1 pictorial HOS in 17 levels. Objects were well drawn and very clear. There was a hint button which recharged in 30 seconds.
MarblePopper/Match 3: I came across 2 of this type of mini-game in 17 levels.

In order to clear a level, you must clear debris and rebuild infrastructure. At times, there are "special requests" from the Queen, e.g. gather 10 flowers.

Power-ups: After completing the first HOS, I had a choice of 1 out of 3 power ups.

Screen has decorative bars on either side, but I didn't notice it as much as I normally would.

Overall, I was certain that I would not like this game, as the term TM just stresses me out. I was so surprised to see my 1 hr trial pass so quickly. At the beginning, I was annoyed that the little characters seemed to move so slowly, and the needed items didn't refill as quickly as my characters were ready. However, as I progressed in levels, things started to speed up a bit, and I learned a little more. I realized that I could increase productivity in all the buildings as there were upgrades...took me 12 levels to realize that. O.K. You TM/Strategy experts...laugh away.
 posted in Tiger Eye: The Sacrifice on May 12, 13 8:55 PM

Happy Mother's Day

Despite the mediocre graphics, and dreadful story, I was so intrigued and had to purchase after my 1 hr trial. This game didn't have the "bells and whistles", but it was different to my usual fare.

There are 3 modes of play: Casual, Advanced and Expert Mode. There are no sparkles or tutorial in Advanced Mode. You must play in Casual or Advanced mode and accumulate 20 hints to unlock expert mode. There are no hints and no skip for puzzles in expert mode.

There are voice overs. There are no lip movements, and I thought that the character drawings were comic book style and the voice acting was dreadful.

There is no map, but I found it unnecessary as there are very limited locations. For those who haven't read any of my other reviews, I get lost very easily.

There is a journal. The journal tab includes the story. The "to-do" tab lists the tasks and the help tab shows game mechanics and how to solve puzzles.

HOS: There are NO "find items on a list" junk pile type HOS. Instead hidden objects are strewn about several scenes and all are necessary for progression in the game. Hidden objects are primarily in the form of:
1. Fragmented objects, eg. 6 parts of a marionette. There are approximately 9 of these.

2. Find x number of y, e.g. find 10 cards. There are approximately 19 of these.

Hints: You begin the game with 5 hints, and hints accumulate as you find objects and solve puzzles. The hint is helpful in telling you where to go next, and you do not lose the hint. You do lose a hint when you skip a puzzle.

Puzzles: There are 50 puzzles. There are 2 "free' hints offered, then you can skip. If you choose to skip the puzzle, you will lose one of your accumulated hints (on the bottom right of the screen). There is no wait time for the "free" hints or skip.

Overall, I detested the ridiculous romance story, the cut scenes were outdated, and the graphics were clear, but mediocre. Movement was often clunky, but there weren't many scenes to navigate. However, the puzzles were the focus and I really enjoyed them. I found them to be quite easy, for the most part......which may be a disappointment to puzzle experts. I spent a fun 4 hours completing this game in casual mode, and I most likely will try to play again in expert mode. This was worth the $2.99, for me.
 posted in House of 1000 Doors: The Palm of Zoroaster on May 11, 13 12:56 PM
This is an excellent deal at $2.99!

There are 2 modes of play: Casual and Expert. You cannot switch modes mid-game. There are sparkles for HOS and subtle twinkles to indicate areas of interest in Casual Mode. I did not notice any sparkles at all in Expert mode.

There is a transporter map. Your current location and areas which require tasks to be completed are indicated.

There is a journal.

There are voice overs.

Collectibles: There are 46 morphing objects to collect. You cannot go back to collect any objects that you missed.

HOS: There are approximately 26 interactive HOS.

Hint: Refill in 30 secs in Casual mode and 1 min in Expert mode. The hint is very helpful outside of HOS.

Puzzles: There are 18 puzzles. They can be skipped in 2 mins in casual mode. Puzzles were the typical matching, rings, blocks, using mirrors to direct light. I found most to be very easy.

Overall, I spent a wonderful 5 hours playing this game. My greatest annoyance is not being able to go back in chapters to locate morphing objects that I missed. However, I had so much fun with the game, that I began it again in Expert mode. Perhaps I'll find all the morphing objects this time. Regardless, it will be fun. The story is interesting, but the ending is abrupt and disappointing. However, the story isn't the most important for me, so I didn't mind too much. I would highly recommend this game as a DD. As always, do try for yourself.

 posted in Abandoned: Chestnut Lodge Asylum on May 10, 13 3:30 PM
Hi MildewWolf,
It is very nice to "meet" you. I have enjoyed your reviews and I sincerely hope to see more of them.

Hi Read,
Sorry to hear that you had so much trouble with the game. I've had that happen to me with 4 or 5 games, but that's out of 200+. It's so frustrating when you like the game, but CS always came through with a replacement game coupon when we couldn't solve the problem.
 posted in Abandoned: Chestnut Lodge Asylum on May 10, 13 8:31 AM
This SE game offers some CE bonuses,so it's a great deal at $2.99, in my opinion.

There are 2 modes of play. Casual and Expert. You can switch modes mid-game by accessing the difficulty bar in the options menu. There were sparkles for HOS in expert mode, but I didn't notice sparkles at other interactive areas.

There are voice overs.

There is no map. For me, this was the greatest negative in the game, as there is quite a bit of trekking back and forth. The hint was not helpful in navigating....just offered "there is nothing to do here".

There is a journal. It contains the story and clues needed to progress in the game.

There are 6 achievements: You can find details of those by clicking on the Extras tab.

It is noted in the achievements that there are 22 morphing objects. Many of the objects are actually "disappearing" objects, although there are still the traditional objects that change in to something else. I only found 8 the first time that I played and 14 the second time that I played. I thought that perhaps some of the objects can only be found in the CE version. I checked the walk-through, and only noticed 15 "morphing" objects highlighted.

HOS: There are 23 HOS. For the most part, I found the scenes clear and the objects fairly easy to locate. I did not have to adjust the brightness.
13 of these scenes are interactive.

Hint: The hint button refilled in 30 secs in casual mode and 1 min in expert mode. The hint button worked outside of HOS, but I did not find it helpful.

Puzzles: There are 12 puzzles. They can be skipped in approximately 1 min in casual and expert mode. I found the puzzles to be very easy, but had to skip a "music memory" type puzzle, as the background music would not switch off. This did not happen the first time that I played.

Overall, this was a fine game for me. It was dark and dreary, with a mediocre story and abrupt conclusion. However, I was entertained for 4 hours 34 mins the first time that I played, and enjoyed it enough to play it through again. And, I will play it a third time in the future ..... just to get my last achievement. As always, try for yourself.
 posted in Mystery of the Earl on May 7, 13 11:09 AM
Despite miniscule objects that are well-blended in to the backgrounds, I enjoyed this game. For me, this game was worth $2.99.

There is only one mode of play.

There are no voice-overs.

There is a diary containing the story.

There is a map. It can be used to transport. I found the map very helpful, as it lists the number of quests to be completed, the number of diamonds found and the number of fragmented parts to be found in a particular location.

Collectibles: There are diamonds to be collected in many of the scenes. They are tiny and well-hidden. There are 10 diamonds to be collected in each scene. The number collected is listed below the hint button, and in the map. Additional screensavers are unlocked as you collect the diamonds. I found a total of 150, with the help of the walkthrough.

HOS: There are approximately 22 fragmented hidden object scenes.
There are 4 "find items on a list" scenes.
There are 12 "find x number of y" scenes, e.g. find 20 flowers.

Hint: The hint button recharges in approximately 45 secs. It does work outside of HOS. It will tell you "try another location" if you have completed all available tasks in a particular location. It will tell you to "use an inventory item", but will not tell you where to use it. However, if you hover your cursor around the screen, areas that have interactions will light up. If you click on that area, you are given a hint as to what is needed.

Puzzles: There are 11 puzzles. They can be skipped after 3 mins. The puzzles were the typical gears, rings, torn pictures, memory etc. I found them all to be very easy.

Overall, I enjoyed this game much more than I expected. My eyes adjusted to the tiny objects, fragments and diamonds. I did keep my Nook open on the walkthrough page for cheats on the diamonds. This spared me a great deal of frustration and eye-strain. The story was average, with a satisfactory ending. This game provided 5 hours of entertainment, and was worth the $2.99, for me. As always, try for yourself.

 posted in City of Fools on May 3, 13 4:49 PM
For me, this is a great bargain, at $2.99. When the game began, and I noticed black bars all around, so there was a tiny game screen, I was very disappointed. However, I decided to keep going. I was frustrated with the map, and endless tasks. I thought that the characters were incredibly ugly, and the dialogue was ridiculous. By the end of the 1 hr trial, I was compelled to buy this game. It is so addictive. I have played for 7 hours and have only completed 41 of the 122 tasks. I will update this review as I move along in the game.

There is no widescreen.

There are no voice-overs. There is an annoying buzzing noise when the characters "speak", so I just had to turn my sound off.

There are 2 modes of play: Extreme adventure mode. No hint.
Casual Adventure mode. Hints.
You can switch modes in the options mid-game.

There is a map. It took me a while to figure out how to properly use it, but once I did, it was very helpful. Place the pin on the address that you need to navigate to, then exit the map. You will notice that there are white arrows on either side of one of the green arrows, pointing you in the right direction.

There is a journal: There is a comprehensive task list at the beginning of the journal. Tasks are added and scratched out as you meet new characters and complete tasks.
There is a more detailed task list as you turn the pages. If you play in casual mode, you will also have your hints on the page opposite a specific task.

Hints: In casual adventure mode, there are:
1. hints in the HOS and the puzzles. Hint button takes 1 min to charge.
2..hints in the journal: Hint button takes 10 secs to recharge. You can choose as much help as you need.

So far, I have come across:
3 "find items on list" HOS.
5 Silhouette HOS.
3 Find x # of y" HOS.
1 Pictorial HOS.

Puzzles/Mini-games: So far, I came across 8 puzzles/mini-games. They cannot be skipped, but the hint button does work. It takes 1 min to fill each time. Puzzles were the typical pipes, repair statue, piece together a photo etc. The mini-games included a roulette game, where you could win or lose money, a soccer game, and a shooting range.

Overall, I am having a fantastic time with this game! It could be improved if there were proper voice-overs, widescreen, and a transporter map. Well, I'm going back to play.
 posted in Midnight Mysteries: Salem Witch Trials on Apr 25, 13 6:41 PM
This is a wonderful game, and as Twins pointed out, we have extras that we don't normally have in SE games. This is a good deal at $2.99. I began playing this game again today just to refresh my memory. I only intended to play a few scenes, but just kept was too much fun!

There is no choice in mode of play.

There are no voice overs.

There is a journal.

There is a map. I did not find it at all helpful. It couldn't be used to transport and it gave no indications of areas with objectives.

Achievements: There are 16 achievements.

Collectibles: There are 63 clovers hidden throughout the game. These can be found both inside and outside the HOS.
There are 28 ravens to collect.
Note: You must collect 50 clovers to unlock the unlimited HOS feature.

There are approximately 11 "find item on a list" HOS. There is minimal interaction, such as opening a drawer, in some scenes. I found some of the items to be miniscule and some very well hidden. Fortunately, there was no mis-click penalty.
There is 1 "find pairs" HOS.
If you click on the name of an item in the list, the silhouette of the object is shown in the lantern on your lower right. However, not using this option is one of the achievements.

Hints: These are earned by locating ravens. However, not using hints is one of the achievements.

Puzzles: There are 11 simple puzzles. They can be skipped in a little over 2 minutes. However, not skipping puzzles is one of the achievements.

Overall, I had a wonderful time playing this game, and I will definitely play it again. I still have not earned all of the achievements. I collected 59 out of the 63 clovers and 26 out of the 28 ravens. When I began the game again with the same profile, my earned achievements were still there. I was hoping that I could just collect a few more clovers and ravens to add to my count, but no such luck. My count started at 0 again. For me, the game took a little over 3 hours to complete the second time. I do recommend this game. However, do try the demo first.

 posted in Azada: Elementa on Apr 23, 13 4:23 AM

HOS: There are approximately 14 interactive HOS. There is an average of 4 objects per scene which require interaction. Several require more than one step to complete. Some scenes were more hazy and cluttered than others, but I rarely needed to use the hint button. See previous post for hint recharge times.

Puzzles: There are approx. 32 puzzles. I found that these ranged in difficulty from easy to very challenging, for me. Some puzzles were a little lacking in explanation, for my skill level. There were some unique and interesting applications of some of the "typical" puzzles. See previous post for skip times.

Hint: I found the hint button extremely helpful, as it worked outside of HOS and was also helpful with directions. There really is no need for a walk through or a SG, in my opinion. Well, perhaps for further explanation on a few of the puzzles.

Overall, this was a remarkable game, filled with entertaining and magnificent characters and creatures. It took me about 6 hours to complete, skipping 5 puzzles. I will definitely play this game again! I know that I can get through those pesky puzzles that eluded me.

I highly recommend this game. It is an absolute bargain with the current 50% off deal! As always, try the demo.... we all have such different tastes. Have fun.
 posted in Azada: Elementa on Apr 23, 13 4:03 AM
This is an excellent game, in my opinion. I found the graphics to be beautiful, although sometimes a little hazy, to me.

My Pet: At the beginning of the game, you receive a wonderful companion. You can choose it's appearance via scroll bars.

Collectibles: There are 83 critter coins to be collected in the SE. These coins can be used to purchase outfits for your pet. Unfortunately, there are not enough coins available in the SE to purchase all the items. There is only one item that you will not be able to purchase with the SE. When I went to replay the game, I was hoping that I could just add coins with my existing profile, but you start again with no coins. There are an additional 22 coins in the CE.

Magic bottle: The magic bottle is located above the inventory bar. When it glows, move it around the screen to reveal hidden magic areas, and to obtain hidden/magic inventory items.

There are 3 modes of play: You can change modes mid-game via options.
1. Casual : approx. 45 secs skip and hint buttons. Sparkles.
2. Advanced: Approx. 90 secs skip and hint buttons. Still sparkles for HOS.
3. Fearless Hero: 3 min skip and hint buttons. Sparkles for HOS. Automatic black bar tips disabled, but hint still helpful.

There are voice-overs.

There is a journal/diary. There are 2 tabs to select in the diary.
1. Notes tab - contains the story.
2. Tasks tab - the tasks are listed on the left page. If you click on a task, more detail is provided on the right page.

There is a map. It can be used to transport. I found it very helpful. The map indicates undiscovered areas, completed areas, incomplete areas, and areas that require immediate attention for tasks. When you hover over an area on the map, a picture of the area appears, with a list of tasks in that location.

 posted in Victorian Mysteries®: The Yellow Room on Apr 21, 13 1:15 PM
Spoiler - highlight to read: However, I still do not know why our sleuth let the culprit escape.
There were a few annoyances, such as skip and hint buttons being much too long in casual mode, for me. Also there are 2 situations in which we have to backtrack 7 or 8 scenes unnecessarily. There is nothing to accomplish, except to listen to our sleuth pass along information that could have been done in the scene that we were already in.
However, the positives in this game by far out weighed the negatives, for me. I spent a very relaxing and entertaining 3 hours playing in casual mode. The second time that I played in expert mode, I read more information, and played for 4 hours. This is a game that I will definitely play again. A great deal at $2.99, in my opinion.
 posted in Victorian Mysteries®: The Yellow Room on Apr 21, 13 1:04 PM
I really enjoyed this game and think it is well worth the $2.99.

There are 2 modes of play: Casual and Expert. You cannot change modes mid-game. There are sparkles for HOS in both casual and expert mode.

There are voice-overs.

There is a journal. It includes 3 sections.
1. Evidence tab; opens a page containing evidence photos that you have taken. If you hover over a photo, some details are revealed.
2. Characters tab: opens a page with photos of the characters. If you click on each character, a new profile page will open.
3. Story tab: opens a page with the completed chapters listed. Clicking on a chapter will allow you to review the story as you progress.

There are 2 maps. One is located in a scroll below the task book (bottom right corner). This is an overview of the different buildings.
The second map is located in the task book. This was more helpful to me. It indicates your current location, HOS, evidence location and areas to investigate. The map does not transport you to locations.

Task book: Also in the task book is a detailed task list.

HOS: There are 16 "find items on a list" HOS. There were only 2 interactive HOS, with very, very simple interactions. I found some of the scenes to be a bit more hazy/blurry than others.

Hint: Refills in 90 secs in casual mode and 3 mins in expert mode. There is no hint button outside of HOS. However, if you move your cursor around the scene, it changes to a magnifying glass to indicate areas of interest. If you click on a scene that has no active zones in it, "there is nothing left to do here" appears. With so many of my games, that's all the help that I get from the hint button, so I didn't miss having the actual "button".

Puzzles: There are 17 simple puzzles. They can be skipped in 5 mins in casual mode and 6 mins in expert mode.

Overall, this was a great game for me. It is such a nice change from my many vampire, ghosts, crazy scientists, demons, and lost family members games. The first time that I played the game, I was very confused and dissatisfied with the conclusion. I had so many unanswered questions. However, I loved the easy, relaxing gameplay, so I played it again. This time, I didn't neglect to read the clues in the journal. I read the newspaper clippings and telegram, which I would normally skip and it filled in some of the mystery for me.
 posted in Silent Nights: The Pianist on Apr 20, 13 6:21 PM
For me, this was a fair deal at $2.99.

There are 2 modes of play: Casual and Challenge mode. You cannot switch modes mid-game. There were sparkles for HOS in both modes.

There are voice-overs.

There is no journal. However, the story unfolds through dialogue (not too much) throughout the game. Codes needed are either close, or are noted in the puzzle itself.

There is no map, but the hint button does provide directional arrows. A transporting map would have been extremely valuable for this particular game due to the slow loading times between every single scene.

There is an extra brightness button in the options section if you find some of the scenes to be too dark. However, I found the extra brightness to be too bright. I quickly switched back, and did not find scenes to be too dark at any time in the game. Perhaps a slider bar to choose level of brightness would be a better option?

HOS: There are 26 interactive HOS. I thought that they were beautifully drawn, and most of the interactions required 3 or 4 steps to complete, which I felt added more interest.

Hint: Recharges in approximately 30 secs in casual mode and 60 secs in challenge mode. The hint does work outside of HOS and also helps to navigate.

Puzzles: There are 13 puzzles. They can be skipped in 90 secs in casual mode and 3 mins in challenge mode.

Overall, my greatest complaint is the long load time (approx. 4 secs to 10 secs) between scenes. Even when you zoom in to areas of interest, and zoom out again, there is a black screen. Those lag times really add up when you have to back track several scenes to get to an objective. For example, Spoiler - highlight to read. It took me 1 min 5 secs to backtrack to the scene with the flour after I had repaired the flour sack. I collected the flour, then had to travel through 8 scenes to get to the kitchen to bake the bread. That took me another 1 min 20 secs....most of that time is spent clicking and staring at the black screen. It has taken me all day to complete the game, as I simply did not have patience and could only play about 30 mins at a time before I became frustrated. Total game play time for me was about 5 hours in casual mode.
If there was not such a long load time, I would have considered this an excellent game and a "must have" at $2.99! The graphics and character animations are outstanding. However, I don't regret the purchase. It is definitely worth a try.
 posted in Unsolved Mystery Club ®: Ancient Astronauts ® on Apr 5, 13 2:56 PM
This is a good deal for $2.99. I thought that the graphics were a bit blurry, but not dreadful. Also, for those fishes who prefer puzzles, there are more than twice as many puzzles in comparison to HOS.

There are 2 modes of play: Casual and Expert. There are sparkles for HOS in both. You cannot change modes mid-game.

There are voiceovers throughout the game.

There is a journal, (round disc at bottom left of screen), but I found it lacking in that it did not store important clues to help solve puzzles. So, keep paper and pen handy as you will need to "remember" sequences a couple of times.

There is no map, but the five chapters/locations are self-contained. There is little trekking back and forth in each chapter. Even I couldn't get lost.

HOS: There are approximately 11 HOS. They are not interactive, and I found many to be quite cluttered and blurry.

Hints: recharge in 2 mins in casual mode, and 5 mins in expert mode.

Help button: this is in lieu of the usual hint button outside of HOS. When you click on this button, you are offered a selection of pertinent questions. You click on the task/action that you require and you are given instructions.
Help button recharges in 2 mins in casual mode and 5 mins in expert mode.

Puzzles: there are approximately 28 puzzles. I found most to be extremely simple. For me, the memory type puzzles were Medium to hard in difficulty. There were between 2 to 15 "steps" to remember as the sequences progressed. I needed my pen and paper by the last sequence. I found a few of the puzzles to be tedious and time consuming.
Puzzles could be skipped in 5 mins in casual mode and 8 mins in expert mode.

Overall, this was worth the $2.99. The story was interesting and there was a satisfactory, albeit abrupt, conclusion. The graphics and voiceovers could have been better, IMHO. My biggest complaint is the length of recharge time on the hint and skip button in casual mode. As the HOS were blurry, to me, I had difficulty finding objects and used the hint twice for every scene. Two mins is just too long to wait in casual mode for a hint, IMHO. Similarly, a 5 mins wait for the skip button on puzzles in casual mode is excessive. There were 2 identical puzzles that I always choose to skip after 2 mins because I find them tedious and frustrating. It was extremely annoying to wait so long for that skip button. Nonetheless, this was a fine game, at a fair price.
 posted in Fairy Island on Apr 4, 13 10:33 PM
You're welcome Pixieydust. I played another hour after posting, and am now stuck on level 90. But I am still having so much fun. I am a novice at match 3, so I plan to play the continuous mode for a while to hopefully build up some speed.

Thank you Mamalita for clarifying that. I have played all modes fairly equally. Puzzle mode still only had 6 fairies to free at 23 levels completed in that mode. I am now up to 13 fairies at 24 levels completed in Normal mode. I kept switching around after several unsuccessful attempts at a particular mode, just to avoid frustration and to keep things interesting for me. I just love all those choices!

Have fun!
 posted in Fairy Island on Apr 4, 13 11:14 AM

There are 4 play modes. The game begins with normal mode only. The other modes are locked. In normal mode, a new row of blocks is added to the board at varying intervals. The speed increases as you progress. You must not allow the blocks reach the top of the board.

Locks mode: Is unlocked at level 10. In this mode, you must clear all the tokens from the board. Any unmatched tokens will be locked, and new tokens fill up the board again. Locked tokens can be removed by matching them twice.

Shifter mode: This is unlocked at level 20. In this mode, the tokens drop from the top of the board, and then shift to the right of the board as you make matches. Again, you must not allow the blocks to reach the top of the board.

Puzzle mode: This is unlocked at level 30. This mode requires matches to be made in a particular order.

Once you unlock all play modes, you can choose modes to your own liking. If you fail a level, you can choose to replay it or try another mode.

Power-ups: There are 5 fairy power-ups. As you match certain colours, the power button for that particular fairy fills up. Once filled, it automatically activates e.g. the fire fairy (red) shoots exploding fireballs.
There are also power ups for increasing time, bonuses and increasing the speed in which fairies are made available on the board.

Overall, I have enjoyed 7 hours of entertainment with this game, with minimal frustration. Match 3 is not my preferred genre, but it is nice to have a little variety in games. At level 86, I am now having some difficulty and have failed 3 times in a row. I don't know if I will be able to complete the story part of the game, but I don't regret purchasing this game. I feel that it is well worth the $2.99, and it has great replay value. Definitely one that will stay in my Game Manager.
 posted in Fairy Island on Apr 4, 13 11:08 AM
I almost gave up on this game after playing only 10 mins. However, I continued on and was addicted to it by the end of the demo. There are a few frustrations with this game, but $2.99 was a great deal, for me.

There are 3 game options.

1. Story option: Fairies have been kidnapped and trapped in "tokens" in the game. You must match 3 or more, including the token in your "set" to free the fairies. The game begins with having to free 5 fairies per board, and increases as you progress. (At level 86, the number of fairies to be released per board is 11).

There is a timer. You begin with 3 mins, but can buy more time (up to 2 mins extra time per board) with the acorns earned in the mini-games.

Mini-games: There are 2 types of minigames.
The acorn mini-game requires that you click on the acorns as they pop up on the screen. I believe that it begins with 5 acorns, and increases as the levels increase. By level 86, there were 19 acorns to be caught per mini-game. You must catch all the acorns the first time or you will not earn the acorn. You will not be given a chance to replay these mini-games. This was difficult and slightly frustrating, as you had to hit the acorn perfectly, and my cursor often froze. I failed 5 out of 17 mini-games that I played, but I still earned enough acorns to buy power-ups.

There are 3 HOS mini-games. You must find 15 acorns. They are extremely well blended in to the scenery. There is a hint button. It refills in approximately 1 min.

There are 100 levels.

2. Timed option: You have 5 mins to score as high as possible. You can choose normal, locks or shifter play modes. (see below for play modes) However, you must play story options first to unlock the different play modes.

3. Continuous option: There is no timer. However, you cannot let the blocks reach the top. You cannot change between play modes. If you choose normal, you must continue to play through the levels in that mode only. As you play, you will automatically "level up". Once you leave, your score will be saved, but your game will not. You must begin again at level one.

 posted in Rita James and the Race to Shangri La on Apr 2, 13 3:51 PM
This game was a mediocre game, but worth $2.99, for me.

There is only one mode of play. There are sparkles only for HOS and puzzles.

There are voiceovers.

There is no journal. This became a problem for me only a couple of times when a task required remembering clues, such as symbols that were in a different location. Keep pen and paper handy.

There is, what is referred to in the tutorial as, a "map". I thought that it was more of a task list, than a map. It did not help to navigate. e.g highlight to read... At a point, I was lost and consulted the "map". There was a reference to an area that I had been in, but I forgot how I had gotten there. The hint was unhelpful, but eventually I noticed the trap door that I had used. It was very frustrating, as the hint button never pointed to that trap door.
Also, your hint button will deplete if you use it for direction.

HOS: There are approximately 22 interactive HOS. The graphics were a bit blurry, but acceptable, for me. Some of the interactions were clever and unique.

Hint: Recharges in approximately 45 secs. The hint does work outside of HOS. It was sometimes helpful in puzzles, as it would place an item, or give instructions. At other times, the hint would just say "area cleared" in the puzzle, even though it was not completed.

Puzzles: There are approx. 15 puzzles. There are no instructions, but the hint button sometimes gives instructions. Puzzles can be skipped in 90 secs. Puzzles varied from simple to difficult, for me. I had difficulty with the puzzles requiring hand/eye coordination and speed. There were 3 of these types in a row. Most of the puzzles were of the usual variety, such as pipes, picture and melody memory. Two of the puzzles had a time component. Highlight for details: In the final chapter, there was a memory match puzzle(turn over stones to match 2 at a time). However, there was an extremely fast timing bar on the top of the screen. I couldn't move fast enough. The final puzzle also has a very fast timer, but only requires one action to complete.

Overall, I enjoyed the first 3hrs out of 4 hrs total gameplay, for me. It just became monotonous. The cartoon cutscenes were funny and entertaining. I don't regret purchasing, but probably won't play it again. Not a bad game for $2.99.
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