Ankh – the Lost Treasures in Review – Have you seen my ankh?

One of the genres, quite young even on the desktop but already found itself comfortably sitting on the App Store, is Hidden Object – a type of game where you have to find items hidden in an image to advance. Most of these games back this up by a storyline of sorts to make the process more involving. Today we’re reviewing Ankh – the Lost Treasures, the latest addition to the genre by Softdistribution and the prequel to the highly acclaimed PC adventure Ankh.

Ankh – the Lost Treasures is a classic hidden object game with a bit of easy puzzles thrown in between the scenes. You are in charge of young Thara, searching desperately for a recently stolen artifact to save the life of her father. The story is told in a few animated cutscenes and a lot of dialogues between levels and does a decent job of tying together the narrative.

The gameplay element is exactly what the genre name implies – scene after scene you have to identify and tap on various objects, defined in the status bar. After you finish collecting all of the junk, thrown at you by the storyline, Thara will use a special crystal to check the scene in a new light and find shards that, put together correctly, allow you to advance to the next area.

If you’re stuck you can always use the ankh hint system to identify one of the objects you’re looking for at the moment. And if you run out of them – you can always revisit previously cleared levels and find some more. Ankh offers two game modes: one with a timer and one without. For most gamers I would advise the latter, since the time constraint is rather harsh.

There’s not much that can be said about the interface of Ankh other that it does its job and looks nicely drawn. But talking about the graphics in general – they turn out to be a major disappointment. At max zoom-out everything looks gorgeous and crispy clear. As soon as you start zooming in, however, the real amount of effort, put in by the developers, becomes apparent. The image immediately becomes very blurry with stuff extremely hard to distinguish even at max zoom-in leading you to resorting to blindly tapping the whole screen in an attempt to hit that magic spot.

Ankh – the Lost Treasures is one of the unfortunate examples how a company tries to rip a few extra bucks of an immensely successful PC franchise with the least amount of effort invested. The basic concept and mechanics, while a questionable shift from a full-fledged adventure on the desktop, work as well as can be expected. The clearly insufficient amount of effort gone into drawing the images themselves, however, kills the experience, where being able to actually distinguish what you’re tapping from the background is key. I strongly advise against grabbing Ankh – the Lost Treasures as  there are plenty more quality titles out there in the genre available for the picking.

With this I declare Ankh – the Lost Treasures officially touched!

App Summary
Title: Ankh – the Lost Treasures Developer: Softdistribution GmbH
Reviewed Ver: 1.0 Min OS Req: 3.0
Price: $5.99 App Size: 50.0 MB
  • Adequate storyline
  • Very poor image quality becoming blurry at the slightest zoom-in
  • Short
  • Sometimes the explanation for the hunt for objects is rather stupid


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A project manager in a major telecommunications supplier, an iPhone junkie and lately - a TMA editor. Love long walks on the beach and my wife, who is the most beautiful girl on the face of this planet. You can also follow me on twitter for all things iPhone and project management (and some personal stuff as well):

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