One of the biggest buzz of this year is about to come true. Come June 2014 and you did be able to see yet another Internet giant joining the arenaread more...
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.
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.
Each 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:
+ 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
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