Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Are the jewels worth it? - A review of Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace


What I liked

  • The story
  • Inventory items

What I didn't like

  • Too many objects per scene
  • Music


Quick Plot

You are investigating some mysterious letters containing information about Buckingham Palace's secrets.


Highlights

The best thing this game has going for it is the story. As you follow the clues in a series of anonymously penned letters, you will discover as-of-yet undiscovered secrets within the great palace of Buckingham.

You are frequently given little tidbits of historical information about the palace, which is strictly offered for educational value. This information is actually interesting, even though it doesn't really tie into the story.

The graphics in the game are well-designed, putting you into 3D-rendered rooms, not like the Mystery Case Files games which have a more 2D look to them. But, I found that I actually preferred the Mystery Case Files style. The rooms in Buckingham Palace just didn't do much for me. Your opinion may vary.

The main things that frustrated me in this game were the repetitive mediocre music, and the long list of items to find in each room. Again, Mystery Case Files games have the edge here, with much shorter lists of things to find.

Hints are available. You spend hint points to buy varying levels of revelation. You gain hint points by finding two hidden crowns in each scene. The more points you spend on a hint, the better the hint.

Additionally, this game had a feature I like in any hidden objects game: inventory items. As you find the hidden items, you keep a few, and then you use them all at one time on a puzzle scene. This is a nice way to break up the tedious monotony of find, find, find.


Suitable for the family?

I will caution family gamers here. For the most part, this game is safe for children, with educational elements to it, (although my little kids weren't very interested in watching this one).

But, there is one scene with some female nude figure statues right in your face in one scene. These statues stand on either side of a fireplace. There are a number of other female nude statues in various scenes as well, but the fireplace one is the one to watch out for if you're concerned about protecting your children's little eyes.


The family man's final ruling

Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace was a pleasant diversion for my wife and me to click through together, but with many more enjoyable hidden objects games out there, this one shouldn't be high on your list, unless the theme is interesting to you. If you love English castles and their history, this game will be enjoyable for you. And you may find that you disagree with me and that you actually love the 3D-rendered art style and the music. The only way to find out is to try the game!

You'll like the game if...

  • You are interested in English history, especially if you like castles
  • You are an elite hidden objects fan and need one more game!

You won't like the game if...

  • You have played the best hidden objects games and only want more of the best
  • You like hidden objects games to have depth and variety


My rating:

If you want to play it Hidden Mysteries: Buckingham Palace, click below:

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