Mystery Mania: a Solid Point and Click Puzzler

Mystery Mania was my first point-and-click puzzler on iTunes. I was never a huge fan of the genre but many people really get into it. Mystery Mania comes to us from major publishing company Electronic Arts. As with most EA titles buyers will receive a professional product.


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The title features soft cartoon graphics that perfectly fit the theme of a mystery game. You take on the role of F8 a robot that wakes from a deep slumber only to find he is in a mansion with alarm bells going off. F8 does not even know why he exists much less what is going on in the mansion. Your adventure will take you through various themed rooms such as the gym or the laboratory as you unravel the details of the mystery.

The story is somewhat intriguing and will actually encourage you to play further to discover the secrets of the mansion. It does involve a little bit of reading but it comes in tolerable doses.

mystery mania 1Each room essentially acts as a level. Your job is to interact with the objects in the room in the proper order. Think: plug in the lamp, turn on the lamp, find the secret hole in the wall, and use the hammer to widen the hole. The game features 27 total levels and they range from short to true head scratchers. This is one of those games that some people will get hopelessly stuck and then return days later and be able to solve the puzzle.

The fact that there are no hints and my inability to find any walkthroughs online means you can get really stuck. I usually have only about 24-48 hours to review a game thus I do not always have the luxury of finishing a game prior to review. As I write this I am hopelessly stuck on a level but I am confident with more time I will progress. This can make for a frustrating journey with satisfying results.


The controls in this game are all touch based. Put your finger on the spot you want to interact with and F8 will dutifully attempt to make your wishes work. The screen will flash green if it is an acceptable action and red if it is not.

The controls work fine but they go hand in hand with my biggest complaint. You have to wait an inordinate amount of time waiting between actions. If you tell your robot to go flip a switch you have to watch his animation over to the switch, watch the action, and then wait for him to saunter back over to the middle of the room before you can make your next move. This can be very frustrating when there are a million items in a room and you want to quickly try out various combination’s. This also means that if you try and select your move it will come up as invalid until the set piece is finished loading. Part of this is the fault of the animation and part of this is the in-game loading that occurs between actions.

What We Liked:

mystery mania 2+ Amusing visuals and animation sequences
+ Being able to pick your own tunes via the in-game menu
+ Funny achievement titles such as He kicked a mouse
+ Interesting mystery storyline
+ Force feed back option
+ Satisfying and novel puzzles
+ Decent number of levels to explore

What We Disliked:

– Waiting an eternity between actions
– Current price level is a little steep
– Getting stuck and not be able to do a thing about it for days
– Once you beat the game you won’t want to go back through

Final Verdict-

If you have the patience for point and click puzzlers this is a solid title. It packs an interesting story with clever novel puzzles. The application gets a higher score because it feels new and fresh on the iPhone. If it appeared on any other device I would probably give it 3 out of 5. Just be forewarned – you will get stuck.


Footage is not from the iPhone Version. It’s intended to show you what the gameplay is like


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Leave a comment
  • Anna

    hi, i am completely stuck in Green house, looking for a way out.


  • Anna

    I was stumped on the greenhouse awhile too. When you come in the door, pick up a steak. Toss it onto the hook near the man-eating plant. He will stretch up to eat it and knock the joystick off the shelf. Use the joystick to move the magnet to pick up the cage and then trap the dog. Then pick up the part. Seemed simple once I got it but took forever!!

  • Carrie

    Does anyone know how to get out of the garage?

  • Kelly

    I’m stuck in the storage room…help!

  • Katie

    I need help also. I’m stuck in the room with the boy and I don’t know how to solve the computer where you have to connect all of the boxes together. Can someone help please?

  • Monika

    hun, look at the small square device behimd the boy and then go to the machine by the door. switch the lights on it to match the device’s ones. ;)

  • steve

    stuck on 2nd greenhouse any way 2 help

  • Mel

    Hi Jason,

    I’m stuck on the ‘Den’ level. Driving me nuts. Can you please mail me the solution! Thanks.


  • Chanto

    Mel, Den is easy, two ways:

    1) grab the two antenas and put them on the tv. plug it and copy the sequence on screen, replicate it on the board to the left of it.

    2) move the metal box next to the book shelf by clicking on it and then on the books. then click on the following book order: yellow, blue, red (worked for me). the clock will move, get the key and open the right door. Good Luck!!

  • Stewie

    Here’s one that seems like it could have been good, but it just doesn’t execute on its promise. The negatives, while few, really seem to outweigh the positives. Shame, because I expect more out of EA.

  • snow_mani

    Nice review Jason. It looks like an interesting game. It might be just my kind of game, especially as I don’t have to master any difficult controls. I could probably put up with the time it takes to perform actions. I’m sure it won’t take very long before someone beats all levels and posts a walkthrough to the web.

  • snow_mani

    I’m not sure how new this game is but in true/typical EA style it’s not available in the Australian iTunes store. This happens with a lot of EA games. Sometimes we get an International version and sometimes we don’t. I’d use the US iTunes gift voucher but I already purchased 4 other games with it!

  • snow_mani

    Gosh darn it! I wish there was a way to edit our comments….. OK so I searched in iTunes rather than just using the Buy Now at the end of the article. This game is available in an International version. There’s also a lite version available too. So if you are not in the US and you get a message that the application is not available when you use the Buy Now button, search in iTunes for Mystery Mania to see if the International version is available instead.

  • Glenn

    Ill add the edit to my list… Glad you could find it..

  • Glenn

    Glad I got secret of monkey island while it was 2.99 a while back! Love that game wish more quality titles like this would hit the iPhone/iTouch devices.

  • Daniel

    sweet review there jason. i was a huge fan of these kinds of games in middle school but im not sure how it’ll fare now that im a “man” ahha. nice to know there’s a more “price-friendlier” point and click app. not sure i wantd to shell out 5 bucks for secret monkey island.