Mind Snares: Alice’s Journey HD in Review – Creepy Visions Make Nifty Games
If you’ve been adventure gaming on your iPhone or iPad for long I’m sure you’ve run across a G5 adventure or two. The name Artifex Mundi might not sound quite as familiar, but they had their hands in both the Nightmares from the Deep series and Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden, both of which I’ve given high regards to. Their latest combined effort is Mind Snares: Alice’s Journey, and having just finished it I’d say it deserves the Artifex Mundi branding. Excellent visuals, theatrical quality music and an odd storyline do a great job of keeping you entranced to the very end. Either this version wasn’t the collector’s edition or the typical bonus adventure was strangely absent this time around, but there was more than enough main game play to make up for that missing element.
You play the role of Alice, a run down middle class laborer who is basically unhappy with her life. On your way to a client you run off the road, and the journey that ensues is one of weird dreams and enlightening quests. Alice certainly has a vivid imagination, as her black robed spirit guide takes her through a “living doll” factory, the salvation of a half dying tree and the quest to feed some old hag her supper. Through it all you’ll have to complete plenty of object quests, solve a few mini-games and explore several hidden object scenes. The game is broken up into an intro and four main chapters, and of them I think I liked chapter one the best as it had the most enjoyable ratio tasks: object puzzles took center stage, mini games came next and hidden object scenes were minimal. As the game progressed the amount of hidden object scenes increased, and while I have nothing against them I’m finding that I much prefer the object based puzzles like adventure games of old.
Control is just what you’d expect from this style of game. Double tap where you want to move, tap to pick up objects and interact with the scene, and tap or drag to use inventory items with something on the screen. The mini games are all fairly basic and require little beyond simple tapping or dragging. While conceptually some of the games were different then I’ve seen in the past, it would have been nice if there were a bit more innovation in interacting with the device itself, like tilting or maybe even using the camera. The game has the standard difficulty settings that alter things like the time between hint recharges and whether or not “hot spots” sparkle so they are easier to find. The game does have several achievements you can earn, and what it thankfully doesn’t have is any of those “collect 50 of these throughout the game” type objects.
As usual the visuals are top notch, with finely detailed backgrounds, well rendered hidden object scenes and cool looking characters. And as usual the main drawback is that the lip syncing always seems a bit off. The sound effects are decent enough, and the voice acting is actually pretty good. I also think they did a really good job with the music. It’s not distracting, and when you actually take the time to listen to it you’ll hear that it’s quite well written.
Overall I really enjoyed Mind Snares: Alice’s Journey. I don’t get to do a complete play through on games very often any more, but this one kept me going until the end was right there. I would have liked to have seen the balance of game play styles stay consistent based on the first chapter, but other than that I have no complaints. If you are an adventure game fan, and especially if you’ve played other Artifex Mundi games, you’ll definitely want to check this one out.
|Title:||Mind Snares: Alice’s Journey HD||Developer:||G5 Entertainment|
|Reviewed Ver:||1.0||Min OS Req:||5.1.1|
|Price:||Free||App Size:||779 MB|