Adventure Escape: Murder Manor
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By: Haiko Games
Rating: All Ages
Detective Emma Grey is invited to dine at Wickham Manor when her car breaks down outside, but little did she expect murder before the main course!
Use your best detective skills to solve nine chapters of puzzles, brain teasers and identify the killer before he (or she!) strikes again.
This is a point and click adventure game with puzzles in increasing complexity as each chapter progresses you further in the ‘story’ of this murder mystery.
Strong points: Lovely graphics, a bit of a quirky attempt to appeal to Jane Austen fans (count the references as you go), hints can be earned as you solve puzzles with a points value that can be spent towards clues for other puzzles. This is not a hidden object game — it’s definitely a “figure out which wires go where”, “what is the bank safe combination code?”, “how do I use X to find Y?” type of reasoning. That said, I found the puzzles challenging, especially the ones where you could take multiple approaches to try to solve it, but only the last attempt is correct.
Weak points: Theoretically you could run out of hints as the clues are revealed in ‘stages’, each clue is a bigger spoiler but costs more hints. I never ran out of hints so I’m not sure what happens if you use them all. Another problem area is if you get stuck and quit a chapter (and a chapter may have multiple puzzles), the next time you pick up where you left off, you have to re-start the chapter. I also found navigation to be a little confusing as some puzzles took place in multiple rooms but there was not always a clear arrow or back button to help you move from one room into another.
Overall, it’s enjoyable for a few hours of gameplay and it’s free (as of the time of this printing), so if you enjoy detective games, check it out and let me know what you think!
Screenshots (from Amazon.com):
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Clockwork Tales: Of Glass and Ink (Full)
By: Artifex Mundi
Rating: All Ages
Dr. Ambrose Ink and his clockwork falcon, Matthew, are attempting to uncover the source for a series of catastrophic earthquakes and their search leads them to Hochwald Castle, the home of the Barber family. As Agent Evangeline Glass, you arrive to assist him in his research to discover he’s vanished!
So this is basically a puzzle game with an adventure storyline. It’s a steampunk themed adventure with gorgeous graphics and it’s relatively straightforward in terms of gameplay. Examples of puzzles include repairing the clockwork falcon and navigating through a dirigible without being caught.
I believe this was a game I obtained in a free promo on Amazon’s Kindle Store and at last check, it was $4.99. As a free game, it was a fun couple of hours’ playing. Would I pay $4.99 for it? That’s a harder question. It’s cheaper than a movie ticket and for the amount of work, the artists/creators deserve some form of payment. With me, a lot depends on playability. I think I’d be more likely to play this again if there were multiple endings possible (and I don’t recall that there are).
If you do enjoy puzzle games — and I certainly do — I’d recommend giving this a shot!
Screenshots from Amazon.com:
My goodness, what newfangled notions this BBC has of engaging readers!
As I sit at my writing desk, I turned to my dictionary to query the correct spelling of Hunsford, the dear little parish of my friend, Mrs. Collins, and what should I see in the margins of the page?
Twas an advertisement for that lady writer, Miss Austen. She seems to have misplaced her creations who have crossed over into one another’s stories of all things. Miss Austen needs to keep her characters in check or who knows what manner of mischief they will find themselves in.
I suppose the only Christian thing to do would be to assist Miss Austen in the recovery of her characters and set things back to rights. But my heavens! It’s a mystery indeed…