Laura Jones and the Secret Legacy of Nikola Tesla is quite different than what I was expecting. I know hidden object games have come a long way in the last couple of years, but this feels more like an adventure game that just happens to use some hidden object scenes as part of the “action”. There’s a detailed story intertwined with many interactive sequences, only some of which involve finding mass amounts of hidden objects. Conceptually it all works, and I know the story keeps me intrigued, but there are a few things in the details that make this journey less than exemplary.
Late last year an indie team - 7th Sense Studios – surprised everyone by releasing Fallen EP-1 (TMA Review), the first and probably only true Survival Horror for the iDevice to date. Unfortunately due to various reasons the team has been disbanded since and the sequel to the excellent game is delayed indefinitely. But it seems Hidden Games have picked up the flag and released Prisoner 84, a game similar in many respects.
The adaptation of the Choose Your Own Adventure gamebook genre to the iDevice had truly exploded earlier this year, with the release of both the tried and tested classic Fighting Fantasy: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (TMA Review) by Steve Jackson and an original Gamebook Adventures 1: An Assassin in Orlandes (TMA Review) written exclusively for the iDevice by Tin Man Games. The former was not a big surprise in terms of content, being a port of original paper gamebook. The latter, however, turned out to be truly a bold re-imagination of the genre for the platform, with some interesting design decisions. And it seems this bold step has only been the first one with the long awaited release of Gamebook Adventures 2: The Siege of the Necromancer.
The explosion of Flash based games these past few years has brought quite a few new genres to the market. One of which is the Escape the Room genre, a cross between adventure and puzzle games, that has even earned a right to its own section in our own Best Adventure games. The iDevice is still mostly devoid of the genre however, with rare examples creeping in. And one such game that is a recent addition to the App Store is Escape the Room: Magician’s WC .
Dracula The Path of the Dragon is an adaptation of highly acclaimed PC adventure game for the iOS. It has been released in 3 parts for the iPhone back in late winter/early spring and has earned a well deserved spot in our AppStore’s Best Adventure Games, as well as being highly acclaimed by the press all across the board. It was and still is one of the most atmospheric adventures on the iDevice platform. And in the last couple of weeks it has become even better with a remastered iPad version released for your pleasure by Anuman Interactive. If by any chance you missed the original it is definitely worth picking it up for the big screen.
And should you have missed the game entirely, there’s always an opportunity to pick it up for the iPhone/iPod Touch as well.
Late last year we reported a bunch of adventure games, planned for adaption to the iDevice platform with the centerpiece being the legendary game by Benoit Sokal – Syberia, arguably one of the most enchanting adventure games ever. Unfortunately, with the owner of the franchise, Microids, having been acquired by Anuman the plans shifted and the project had been suspended indefinitely, with other titles being pushed forward. Instead the current home of the genius, White Birds Productions, has teamed up with Bulkypix and released The Last King of Africa, an adaptation of one of Benoit Sokal’s later games – Paradise.
When I reviewed HECTOR: Badge of Carnage Ep1 a few weeks ago I was immensely impressed by the amount of work and creativity gone into it. So much so that I even secured an interview with the creators Dean Burke and Kevin Beimers that will go live in the coming weeks. And in anticipation of this I decided to write a complete walkthrough to help all of you out there still struggling to complete the obscure task the unknown terrorist posed before the “half-decent” detective.
Sadly, the adventure game genre on the App Store is far from being heavily populated. In fact each and every release, be it even a sub-par one, is a welcome addition. Most of them are ports of PC titles with a few rare but superb exceptions – 1112 episode 01, 1112 episode 02 (TMA Review), 1112 episode 02 HD and Fallen EP-1 (TMA Review). And out of the blue a new underdog just popped onto the scene: HECTOR: Badge of Carnage Ep1. In the best traditions of Sam & Max, developers Straandlooper send Detective Inspector Hector - their last and only line of defence against crime – to stop the sniper terrorizing downtown.
In celebration of the release of 1112 episode 02 HD - the iPad version of the highly acclaimed 1112 episode 02 advenure game (currently topping our 1st person AppStore’s Best Adventure Games list), Agharta Sudio decided to make 1112 episode 01 – the first chapter of the series FREE in conjunction with OpenFeint’s Free Game of The Day. This gorgeous and atmospheric adventure game was also highly acclaimed by the media and scored high reviews all across the board. And for FREE there’s absolutely no reason not to try it out!
Agharta Studio, 1112 episode 01 – Free
Agharta Studio, 1112 episode 02 HD – $7.99
Sometimes it’s nice to have a game that’s not all about “how fast can you get through it” or “how many things can you blow up”. A game that’s about exploration and discovery. A game that lets you go at your pace – one where you can actually stop to enjoy the scenery. Phoenix Spirit tries really hard to be that game, and at some levels it succeeds quite well. Unfortunately, for me to consider something a game there has to be a sense of accomplishment, and this is something that Phoenix Spirit lacks.