IN CASE WITH INSTRUCTIONS
Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets, Witch Trials of 1692 (Nintendo DS)
Gunnar Games has teamed up with the Educational Initiatives Group (the folk who conjured up Escape the Museum) to craft a mysterious tale about witches and curses in Salem, Massachusetts, dating back to 1692 that mixes traditional point-and-click adventuring with the obtuseness of the Myst series, whilst adding a considerable sprinkle of items of find and mini-games to solve. Read on to find out how well Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets, Witch Trials of 1692 plays.
Most will see a game called 'Hidden Mysteries' and presume it is nothing more than a rudimentary trawl through room after room of camouflaged objects that must be uncovered until a long list is completed. However, Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets is more of an old school PC adventure, with the Witch Trials of 1692 definitely having a Myst-style air to it, albeit it with more atmospheric music playing throughout, rather than the deadly silences found within the aged classic.
The player takes the role of Constable Hawthorne, sent by the Governor of Massachusetts to investigate rumours that in Salem there is witchcraft abound. Four young girls have been suffering from an outbreak of mysterious fits and bizarre tantrums, which has led to talk of the girls being "afflicted" by local practitioners of the dark arts. After being abandoned by the fearful carriage driver, the local rural landscape must be traversed alone, with all residents locking themselves away for fear of being fingered for witch-related crimes or even being cursed by the so-called Salem Witch. This leaves the Constable to unravel the mystery by himself, jumping from scene to scene, scouring each area for clues, finding new pathways, collecting key items and information, piecing together objects to create tools, breaking down tough puzzles and riddles, as well as taking part in the odd bout of hidden object fun.
If this had indeed been a Hidden Object game alone, the story itself and intrigue surrounding the events in Salem, Massachusetts would probably have been sufficient enough to keep players gripped. As it stands, though, Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets is an extremely well-balanced product filled with all sorts of different elements that help to draw you further and further into the world, with a journal constantly updating as the story unfolds that proves to be great reading on its own even after the adventure has been completed.
Navigation around the town may seem trial-and-error led at first since there are no on-screen markers that show where to tap in order to move to another scene, but simply holding down the L button brings up arrows for directional movement or a magnifying glass over areas that can be investigated in more detail. An inventory resides on the top screen and can easily be accessed by tapping the tab found at the upper region of the touch-screen, which then drags the storage space downwards so items can be selected for use in the current vicinity. Everything is perfectly mapped to the stylus and touch-screen, movement around Salem and its fifty different areas is simple and intuitive, the twenty-five-plus hidden objects scenes are up there with the best of the genre, and the clever mini-games and puzzles will definitely have players scratching their heads for the duration of the adventure. Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets is the perfect blend of story-driven entertainment with a slew of pleasing puzzles along the way to maintain a high level of engagement and has plenty of suitable atmosphere to set the tone of the tale perfectly.
SOLD WITH 14 DAYS MONEYBACK GUARANTEE. Excluding all Postage Costs.
|Shipping / Handling Cost
|Cost For Each Additional Item
|$0.00 - Free Shipping
|Standard Shipping (1 to 5 business days)