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...
Picture Hunt Mania
Okay, let’s get this out of the way. I’ve never considered myself really into the whole “spot the difference” type of game. I mean, sure when I was a kid I had a good time noticing that one of the girl’s pigtails was missing, and there was a certain pride in finding that before my friends, but eventually the thrill faded.
But now with the iPhone out these types of games seem to be making a bit of a rise —- either that or they’re just easy to program so developers are jumping on it. Whatever the reason the games have seen a whole new light and it was time for me to once again jump into the world of missing pigtails.
Or so I thought…
Picture Hunt Mania by MegaNudge is far from a “pigtail search”. Oh sure, you’re given two pictures and your job is to find the differences, but it’s rare that you’ll be able to spot the differences with just a casual glance. This isn’t your daddy’s picture search… not that your dad had a picture search…. Oh, never mind, you know what I mean.
The basic interface of the game is simple. The start screen gives you buttons to start a new game or resume a current game and to check out the options. The options allow you to toggle the sound on or off and choose if you want to play the game in a timed fashion or just go at your own pace. One word of advice, go with “no time limit” the first time around.
Next you are treated to one of 107 levels of side by side photos and it’s up to you to see what is different with them. Each photo brings three mistakes and you just touch the screen (either side) where the difference is and if you’re correct a little red circle comes down to show you that you were right.
But when you’re wrong? Nothing much seems to happen (at least in the “no limit” version). I’ll get back to this in a moment because that seems to be a fault (although a fixable one) in the game.
Once you have the three differences found you move on to the next challenge and you get some points. It continues on until you get through all the levels and… well… you give yourself a high five and move on.
The pictures are very nice and sharp. They seem to be the best stock photos they could buy. They look good and it’s nice to have a mix of models and other objects to look at, especially since that’s really all you’ll be doing, looking and looking and looking. They’ve also done a nice job working out the differences and making them hard to notice.
It’s not that the game isn’t enjoyable, it’s just that there isn’t much going for it other than the staring. There is no rule section in the game so we have no idea what the points are based on. It seems that you get less points if you choose incorrectly, but it’s hard to know what is going on. You have to go through a lot of trial and error to see what is happening. A little bit of instruction from MegaNidge would go along way.
I mentioned that you don’t really get a penalty in the “no limit” option and that means you can just randomly tap the screen until you find the differences. When you do the various “timed” you lose some time and can eventually run out, which, I discovered costs you some of your points.
So that leads to a bit of a frustrating endeavor with Picture Hunt Mania. There is no real idea from the developer as to what it is you’re supposed to do to get your scoring. A few moments to spell some things out would have helped. And speaking of the scoring, there is no real high score ranking, just the one high score. It’s always better to have a few scores on the board so you can compete more.
Also, with 107 pictures it won’t be too long before you start to have repeats and once you have that… you no longer have a game. An update of more photos or even a change in the differences will make the game last longer.
It’s not that Picture Hunt Mania is a bad game, and if you like this genre it’s certainly a welcome edition, but there are some flaws. A little explanation will help with the playability and some more work on the high score board and more photos (or differences) will help with the replay ability. Until then… well, it’s a lot better than pigtails.
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