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April 7, 2014 7:14 am  #1

StuSue's Reviews

This is where I'll keep all my reviews so I can find them again.  

I'll be going back through all my posts and adding any reviews I find when I have time. 

As I add reviews I'll update the list of games and their post numbers so anyone can find a review should they so desire.

Feel free to add any reviews yourself.  I'll update the games list if any are added.  You can also add any comments to any of my reviews and I'll add those to the list of games as well.

My rating system:

  I love, love, love this game
  I loved playing this game
  I really liked playing this game
  I liked playing this game but nothing special
  I didn't like this game at all and couldn't wait to finish
  I hated this game and couldn't bring myself to finish it


Last edited by stusue (June 16, 2018 1:46 pm)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.

April 7, 2014 7:16 am  #2

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Alphabetical List of Game Reviews

Unless otherwise stated, games are HOPAs.

# 19        A Wizard's Curse
# 38        Beyond the Kingdom - CE  (TM)
# 16        Black Rainbow  (Adventure)
#   8        Bridge to  Another World: Burnt Dreams - CE
# 37        Darkarta - A Broken Heart's Quest - PE
# 35        Darkheart - Flight of the Harpies - PE
#   4        Dream Hills: Captured Magic
# 12        Dreamscapes - The Sandman - PE  (Adventure)
#   7        European Mystery: The Face of Envy-  CE
#   9        Fantasy Quest - Fairyland  (M3)
# 28        Fear for Sale 1: Mystery of McInroy Manor  -  SE of CE
# 18        Forgotten Books: The Enchanted Crown - CE
# 13        Grim Facade: A Wealth of Betryal - CE
# 22        Grim Tales 6: The Vengeance - CE
# 25        Insane Cold - Back to the Ice Age - SE
# 15        League of Light: Dark Omens - CE
#   6        Lost Lands: Dark Overlord - CE
# 23        Mysteries of Neverville: The Runestone of Light - SE
# 20        Origins: Elders of  Time - PE
# 24        Panopticon: Path of Reflections - SE
# 14        Plagiarii
# 26        Queen's Quest - Tower of Darkness - PE
# 10        Rainforest Adventure  (old M3, only at GameHouse)
#   3        Secret Bunker USSR
#   5        Seven Seas Solitaire  (golf solitaire)
# 36        Stories Untold  (Adventure/Simulation/Horror)
# 27        The Other Side: Tower of Souls - straight SE
# 17        Witch's Pranks: Frog's Fortune
# 11        Zombie Jewel  (M3)


Last edited by stusue (July 6, 2018 5:35 am)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 7, 2014 7:20 am  #3

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Secret Bunker USSR 

Review date 7 April 2014

I've just finished Secret Bunker USSR.  I loved the demo, bought it, started playing it yesterday and thought oh, it's a lot easier than I'd expected and there are way too many helpful hints (well, you're told what to do and what you need, even in the hardest mode).
  But the more I played the more I got into it and I loved the graphics, music and the atmosphere!
  You're in an abandoned Russian bunker and so the graphics are all brown rust and very dark, which I personally love, even though there were a lot of complaints about that in the forums. 

There's no walkthrough but you don't need one as the Hint button works well and you can't really get lost as you move from one section then on to another.  You don't have a map for most of the game (but each section is only a few scenes) until you get to one section where you need one and then it's a jump map that shows where there are available actions.  A lot of people in the forums said that it was really old school with crap graphics but I think it was intentional and I loved them as they looked real and really created a fantastic atmosphere.

Some of the things I loved about it:

+  It's long
+  Great music and atmosphere - like Shadow Shelter, it really looks like you're in an abandoned bunker
+  Things look real and you have to do real things, like tilting a lamp up before removing the lightbulb
+  When you need to shoot something you actually have to shoot it, but it's all in the gameplay, not like an arcade
+  Whenever you use a screwdriver/wrench, etc., you choose the order in which to remove things
+  Cursor doesn't change in the HOSs, so no help with the highlighted objects

+  And sometimes you need 2 or 3 steps to get the highlighted objects
+  Except the cursor will change to a hand in the HOSs when you can open a drawer, door, etc.
+  Gramaphone needed a record - sigh - but it was in its cover hidden in a cupboard
+  You had to open the cupboard door, put record on table, remove cover, put record on, find crank in drawer
+  There's a locker puzzle near the end that I loved

+  Everything's in Russian (scenes & HOSs) but you click on them and they're translated for you
+  You can open and close drawers/doors at will and not everything will contain anything
+  You can even still open/close broken drawers after you've blown them up!
+  Watch out when you push buttons in the HOSs!

+  I liked the attention to detail
+  Eg. when mixing decontaminant, beaker stoppers were removed and put back on every time
+  You can get hints in the puzzles when you get stuck and you get the next move!!!!

+  Oh, I was killed a couple of times

+  Luckily for me I got another couple of chances to not die so I could continue

A couple of things I didn't like about it:

-  The game was too easy with too many hints - you're told what to do and what you need
-  It's set in Russia with Russian people with Russian accents, and your name is Jack and the girl's name is Emily

My recommendation

I recommend Secret Bunker USSR as a fantastic, atmospheric game with some original gameplay concepts but not for those who want to be challenged as it's easy, even in the hardest mode, and you're told what to do and what you need.  Even though I was disappointed by being told what to do all the time, it more than made up for it in atmosphere and gameplay.

My rating
  I loved playing this game.

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 7, 2014 7:24 am  #4

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Dream Hills: Captured Magic

Date Of Reviews:  4 April 2014

I've been playing Dream Hills: Captured Magic most of the day and I have no idea how much I have left to do as I still haven't come across the last magic token!  It looked like a really easy game that I'd be able to play really quickly, hence I chose it today, but then I read that it's long and it really is.

It's a fairy-tale sort of game that, at least in the beginning, reminded me a bit of City of Fools as the graphics and characters reminded me a bit of that game and you go from one character to another, doing things for them then getting things from them once you've done whatever it is, or found whatever it is, that they wanted.  It also starts out like kids' game, with easy HOSs, easy minigames, and easy adventuring.  However, the HOSs and minigames get harder the longer you play, and I've started needing to use the Hint button in the HOSs!
  Well, who would have thought of putting a snake on a bottle of wine?
  It was in a HOS where you had to put the items you'd found in that HOS the last time back into the scene, but this time where they were supposed to go.  I've also discovered that it isn't for kids as, even though all the characters are fairytale or kids' story characters, like The Three Little Pigs, Peter Pan and Captain Hook, Pinocchio, Rapunzel, etc., I've just found Snow White, who's actually a black dominatrix who wants to do kinky things to the wicked witch who's caused all the problems!
  So not so much a kid's game.

But I just had a really good laugh when I was playng one of the minigames.  It was one where you press on something and some things go up and some go down, and you have to get them all up or down or whatever.  Well, I was just pushing the 7 buttons, trying to get all 7 of the things on top to go up, and getting nowhere.  So, I started writing down which of the 7 went up and which went down when I hit each button, and when I got to the third button and clicked on it I completed the game!
  I had a good laugh then.  Maybe I should always do the minigames without thinking.

Added shortly after once I'd finished the game:

Well, I've just finished Dream Hills: Captured Magic.  It'll get my
rating - I had fun playing but nothing special, although I did like it more and more the more I played, especially once the HOSs changed from straight lists with no interaction at all, to some with silhouette's (they were hard) and the one where you put objects back into a scene in the correct place.  That changed the gameplay a little.  But it was a cute, easy, fun game and I'm not sorry I played it but I'm glad I didn't buy it.

My rating:
  I had fun playing but nothing special

Last edited by stusue (May 22, 2014 11:01 am)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 8, 2014 8:02 am  #5

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Seven Seas Solitaire

Date of Review:  8 April 2014

I did it !
   I DID IT !

** jumping around with glee **

I finally finished Seven Seas Solitaire!!!!

I feel like I've been playing this game since before I was born.
  Even though I was only playing it at night when I was watching TV, it was one loooooooooooong game!
  And it was great!
  Now I have Freeplay Mode, so it never really finishes.  However, having taken sooooooooo long to play, I now have to go back and re-read the journal to get the full story as I've forgotten it all.  Thank heavens all the story is in the journal and you can go back and read it again.

My Recommendation

Highly recommended for anyone who likes really looooooooooooong, fun golf solitaire games with a real pirate story. 

My Rating
  I really liked playing this game


Last edited by stusue (May 22, 2014 11:01 am)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 12, 2014 10:24 am  #6

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Lost Lands: Dark Overlord CE

Date of Review:  12 April 2014

I just finished Lost Lands: Dark Overlord CE, and I've decided that my Top 3 has become my Top 5 as I just can't decide which of 5 should be in the Top 3.

I loved this game!
  The bonus wasn't overly long at a bit under 90 mins (but I used the Hint button to get around when I couldn't remember where I needed to use whatever it was I'd just picked up) but it was really interesting, taking place mostly in the underwater world, which you had no idea even existed in the main game.  The puzzles could have been a tad more difficult but they were all really fun and ones that I love doing - and you get to replay them all in the Extras.  But all in all I loved it and am really glad I got the CE as, apart from the Extras, I was really disappointed when I finished the main game and was so glad I could continue on with the bonus game - then was really disappointed when that finished!

The only problem I had technically speaking with the game was that I didn't get one of the achievements as it didn't register.
  I hate it when that happens!
  You do everything you can to get all the achievements and then one doesn't register?
  I just figure that if you pay double for a CE then it should work!


Susan had just stepped away to answer the phone, but when she returned she saw something pulling her son Jimmy through a shimmering portal. It closed before she could pull him back. To save him, she must find a way to this other world. Before Susan lies a world that no one else has ever seen before... a world where magic is real and anything is possible. Find out who took Jimmy and what they want in Lost Lands: Dark Overlord!

The Collector's Edition includes:

  *  Beautiful cinematics and gorgeous graphics
  *  A story spanning multiple worlds
  *  Challenging mini-games and puzzles
  *  Explore an underwater world in the bonus chapter

HOSs:  Fantastic!
  List, silhouette, place objects in scene - all difficult and SO much fun!
Puzzles:  All fun but some a tad too easy... but did I say fun?  A lot were some of my favourites.
Music:  Superb!
  The music score sounded like a blockbuster movie score, very dramatic and really set the scene.
Graphics:  Amazing!
  Even the cutscenes were amazing.
Gameplay:  Very smooth and intuitive - not once did I have to go looking for a HOS to find an object I needed.

CE versus SE:  SE would be fine but I'm glad I got the CE as I loved the game.

Length:  Long!  I didn't time it but the main game seemed really long and the bonus was a tad under 90 mins.
Bonus Chapter:  Not necessary to complete the main story (good for SE) but an addition and fun!  All new scenes.
CE Extras:  Bonus chapter, replayable puzzles (not HOSs
), collectibles (and bonus jigsaws), achievements, plus the usual.

My Recommendation

I definitely recommend this game, as either CE or SE, although I'm really glad I got the CE as I didn't want the game to finish at the end of the main game and I got to see the underwater world and even more amazing graphics.

My Rating
  I loved, loved, loved this game!  And it's now joined my Top 3 (then 4) to become a proud new member of my Top 5!


I was looking at the forum for Lost Lands as one of the achievements didn't register and came across the following posts ... it's hysterical!  I don't know if it would be that funny if you haven't played the game but I think it would still be funny.

This is the initial post by MissAbby, commenting on the opening scene ...

MissAbby wrote:

I'm sorry, but the opening cut scene made me laugh out loud! With all the warnings about inappropriate use of cell phones...this has got to be one they should include:

Never park on a rocky cliff by a thick forest in the middle of the night, let your little boy sit on the ground outside the car and play with his teddy while you're standing on the other side of the car talking on your cellphone!

And this amazing response by Tauret ...

Tauret wrote:

Well, I’m the odd fishie out again as it made perfect sense to me that Mom didn’t call anyone for help.

I can just imagine how it would sound...

There are game references here, though in a twisted disjointed way, so if you don’t want to risk possible spoilers you should not read the rest of this.

911: What’s your emergency?

Mom: I (sobs) I had just parked in a dark rather spooky looking forested area and was trying to explain to my dead-beat ex-husband that my son had a dentist appointment tomorrow so Jimmy couldn’t mow his lawn when he (my son not my dead-beat ex) wandered off with his teddy bear and was eaten by an old oak tree that did a rather weak impersonation of Gandalf.

Then I did a few HOS and puzzles and I saved a cute little owl from evil nasty crows then met a dwarf or maybe he was a gnome and he told me I had to make a potion to wake the spirit of the lake and she told me to bring her jewelry before she would help and then the dwarf/gnome’s evil brother sailed off with my son while little Jimmy just sat there on the raft, looking just like Jimmy senior crashed out on the sofa on game day. I tell you, that kid has no spunk, no sense of self preservation, no gumption. Oh and the evil dwarf/gnome keeps sending this flying smoky guy with horns and red eyes after me and he is kinda hot, but he disappears when I try to give him my phone number and now I have to gather some fireflies and figure out how to use a crossbow.

911: You did HOS? What exactly did you do with the HOS and was this before or after you paid them. How may HOS were there?

Mom: Not HOS, HOS and I don’t remember how many there were, but there were a few and I finished them without even one Hint. And then the mini’s I did a few mini’s too. I don’t skip the mini’s, not ever.

911: Mini’s? Ms. just exactly what color were the mini’s you did?

Mom: Huh?

911: Let’s move on to the crossbow. Do you have the crossbow with you now? Is the crossbow loaded?

Mom: No, the crossbow disappeared when I lowered the plank on the boat so I could get the pearl.

911: The pearl?

Mom: (getting frustrated) Yes, the pearl! The pearl for the talking statue chick from the lake. She’s immortal but unable to fetch her own pearl from an abandoned ship. The pearl was in a HOS.

911: I see.

Mom: I had to give her the pearl so she would help me find Jimmy.

911: And did this lake woman help you?

Mom: Uh, I can’t remember. I know I gave her the pearl, but then it’s all kind of hazy. I can’t remember if I did another mini or maybe there was another HOS or gosh, I don’t know. All I know is that my pants are skin tight, I ate too much pizza for supper and my dear child is sailing around with a mad dwarf/gnome and I think my owl is getting restless.

911: OK, we want you to remain calm until one of our officers can get to your location. Please be certain to have the owl restrained according to state raptor codes and have a copy of your owl ownership permit available for viewing, including the owls vaccination record.

All crossbows and other weapons should have the ammunition removed and be securely holstered.

Please refrain from taking any more mini’s and stop playing with HOS. Do not, I repeat, do not interact with any flying demon like entities and we will be with you as soon as possible.

Mom: Well, OK, guess I’ll play some F2P games while I wait.


What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 14, 2014 2:28 am  #7

Re: StuSue's Reviews

European Mystery: The Face of Envy CE

Developer:  Blam! Games

Date of Review:  14 April 2014  (but it's been several days since I finished)

I really liked this game but I agree with Oscar that it is really easy, unfortunately, which takes away a bit of the excitement.  I thought the HOSs were all quite different and fun, especially the one where you had to find the bit of the pipe.  I started that one and thought, what?  I only have to find one thing?  How? Where?
  Then I finally found one of the things that I had to put somewhere else.
  But that one was much harder than all the others and I wished they'd all been that hard. 

But the puzzles were what really let it down.  There were so many opportunities where they could have had a puzzle, like when you put the 3 urns in the display, but it just opened without you having to do anything.  That happened a few times and I found it disappointing each time it happened.  And those puzzles that they did have were also easy and very short.  But I really liked the graphics and the story and had fun playing. 

And yes, there is an animal helper in this game, but this time it's a lynx instead of a cute little kittie!  Now that was original.

I really enjoyed the bonus chapter.
  Unlike Oscar, however, I thought it was quite long, and it was a nice addition.  You didn't need it to finish the story as the main story is nicely tied up at the end of the main game.  The bonus takes place a few months later in another country (Germany) and is a totally separate story but follows on from the main story.  I found it really weird, though, that everyone in Dresden had an English accent.

The Story:

A series of robberies takes a deadly turn in European Mystery: The Face of Envy! You’ve been called out of retirement again by an old friend in Italy. Something very unusual is happening on the streets of Rome... Nobles are being robbed of their jewels in broad daylight and falling dangerously ill afterward. As you begin to investigate, you realize that the case is even stranger than you first thought - the villain takes on the physical traits of his victims right before your eyes! But who is he? And what is his mysterious plan? To find out, you’ll have to explore the sights of Rome and solve challenging puzzles in this thrilling Hidden Object adventure!

The Collector's Edition includes:
  *  A bonus mystery that takes you to the city of Dresden!
  *  Wallpapers, concept art, and videos
  *  Wonderful music tracks from the game
  *  An available Strategy Guide

The Game:

HOSs:  All different and fun with one real thinky one that I thought was great!  Pity they weren't all that hard.

Puzzles:  Easy peasy and several missed opportunities when they could have added puzzles.  But fun.  They had some of my favourite puzzles but unfortunately they were all very easy.

Music:  The music was good but, as it's been a few days since I finished, I can't remember much about it.

Graphics:  I really liked the graphics but not top notch like Nearwood.
Gameplay:  Very interesting story and I really liked running all around the city, which I got to know quite well.
  I loved the crystal box where you made items you needed!

The Collector's Edition:

CE versus SE:  SE would be fine but I'm not sorry I got the CE.

Length:  Okay.  I didn't time it but the main game seemed an okay length and the bonus also seemed longer than usual, but not overly long.
Bonus Chapter:  Not necessary to complete the main story (good for SE) but an addition and fun!  All new scenes in Dresden.
CE Extras:  Bonus chapter, replayable puzzles (not HOSs
), collectibles, achievements, plus the usual.
Collectibles:  25 superb, different masks.  However, there were a few scenes where there weren't any masks and there were 3 stands without masks at the end - and I got them all!  So something went wrong when they were doing the collectibles.

Achievements:  The usual achievements but I really liked what you got for each one and how they were all displayed in their own room.  So much more original than just a list.

My Recommendation

I recommend this game, as either CE or SE, although in this case I think the SE would be enough. 

I'm really glad I got the CE, however, as I really liked the additional bonus story in Dresden, but it's not necessary.  The masks were also fun to collect and really pretty as they were all different Carnivale masks, but not enough to buy the CE.  The achievements were also displayed very nicely but, once again, not enough to purchase the CE.  You can also replay the puzzles and, even though there were some of my favourites, they were all very easy so, once again, not enough to get the CE.

My rating
  I loved playing this game!  Not one of my favourites but I really liked the story and running around Rome and Dresden.

Last edited by stusue (May 2, 2014 11:11 am)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 16, 2014 2:58 am  #8

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Bridge to Another World: Burnt Dreams - CE

Developer:  4 Friends Games  (also the 2 Living Legends CEs, Ice Rose and Frozen Beauty)

Date of Review:  16 April 2014  (game finished 15 April 2014)

I loved, LOVED, LOVED this game!
  I loved everything about the main game!
  It's just a pity that the bonus chapter was a little bit of a disappointment in gameplay, complexity and length, and that it only had iHOSs and no progressive silhouette HOSs, but it was a good addition that took the story another step.  Also, in the extras, only the 9 list iHOSs are replayable, not the fantastic silhouette progressive HOSs.
  But, fortunately, all the puzzles, as well as the really good - and some very difficult, at least IMHO
- puzzles after you've put each painting back together, which I loved, are included.
  Pity they weren't also in the bonus chapter.

The things I loved about the game: 

  +  the HOPs - iHOSs and progressive silhouette
  +  the music  (only 3 pieces that may get monotonous for some but I really
the music)
  +  the graphics
  +  the gameplay
  +  the painting fragments you have to collect, then do a puzzle to put them back together
  +  the achievements
  +  the morphing creatures
  +  the puzzles
  +  the inventory puzzles
  +  the animations and cut scenes
  +  the attention to detail
  +  the black bar tips!  Can you believe that?

I recommend the SE but am not at all sorry that I got the CE as I loved the little morphing creatures you find and you get a bonus game if you find them all.
  The achievements are also really pretty and some of them were hard to get - like 5 HOSs with no missclicks (which I only got in the bonus chapter) as the HOSs are all difficult to do with no missclicks, either difficult silhouette progressive or very interactive lists.  And I got the achievement for finishing the main game in under 6 hours only by the skin of my teeth - so a nice, long main game.
  The bonus chapter was just over an hour.

And yes, there is an animal helper in this game, but this time it's a really cute little dragon named Drako, who helps you whenever you need fire or when you need to dig in the dirt, etc, especially when you need to bring paintings to life.
  But he has trouble flying and each time he helps you he looks up at you as if to say, 'Did I do a good job?  Did I?  Did I?'
  He's SO cute!
  He's in the bonus chapter, as well, but he stays with your brother and doesn't go around with you.  I really missed seeing him in the inventory bar as he's really cute.

The Story:

You’ll never forget the day the monstrous mist rose up and snatched away your little brother – while you watched helplessly from the bridge. But now, after twenty years, the mist has returned – and so has your determination to free him. But first you must confront the evil Countess, who keeps him painting creatures she has learned to burn into reality! Can you face your fears and help your brother finally escape the mysterious island where his dreams come to life - or will the whole world enter the mist? Enter a world where art and reality join hands, in this heart-stopping, hidden-object adventure!

The Collector's Edition includes:
  *  Gripping bonus gameplay
  *  Exciting new quests
  *  Unlockable collectibles and achievements
  *  Stunning wallpapers and concept art
  *  Integrated strategy guide

The Game:

Modes:  3 difficulty levels plus custom.

HOSs:  I loved the HOSs.  You have both very hard interactive HOSs and progressive silhouette HOSs.  The majority of the list HOSs have multiple interactions, and some have more than one thing required to get the object.  They took awhile as you had to work out what you needed and where to put it.  However, if you only get the SE and don't need to get the 3 achievements related to doing them with no missclicks, or the achievement to do them with no hints, then they won't be nearly as difficult.  Same for the progressive silhouette HOSs, which I loved!
  But a pity they aren't replayable in the extras like the list ones are.  The few HOSs in the bonus are all iHOSs, unfortunately, because I loved the progressive silhouette the best.
  I think most, if not all, HOSs are played twice.  However, each time you replayed a scene whatever you'd removed the time before was still removed. I have no problem replaying a HOS if the developers have taken the time to do that.

Puzzles:  The puzzles aren't all that difficult but they're FUN.
  However, once you've collected all the fragments for a painting (which is part of the gameplay, not just collectibles), you have to then do a puzzle to put them back together, and each one is different.  They're all variations on a theme.  Each painting consists of either squares or triangles and the pieces are mixed up and you have to put the painting back together, either swapping pieces, or turning pieces, or moving them around in some way.  And I found some of them really hard, especially as you have no idea what the painting is, unless you get a good look at it in the few seconds you get between when the last fragment is found and put next to the others and when the puzzle is presented.  I only just thought of that now!
  But I loved those puzzles and couldn't wait to do the next one.  Just a pity you didn't need to do that in the bonus chapter, as that had a different gameplay.

Graphics:  I really, really liked the graphics.

Gameplay:  Very interesting story and gameplay.  I loved the way you had to collect painting fragments throughout the main game and then put them back together with a sometimes difficult puzzle, then little Drako had to bring them to life.  I found that really different, interesting, and fun.  Sometimes I wasn't sure what I had to do next, only to find that I'd missed picking something up in one of the scenes I'd visited, but a couple of times, as I'd chosen not to have sparkles, I'd walked straight past a HOS that I didn't know I needed to do.
  Unlike in European Mystery: The Face of Envy, when I was never unsure about what I had to do (only trying to remember where something was), in this game a couple of times you need to do a HOS and you don't know that you need to.  In the middle there's also, unfortunately, a bit where you go back and forth, just finding inventory items and using them with no HOSs and no puzzles, but then you get a whole heap to make up for it.

Attention to Detail:  The developers really paid attention to detail in this game.  Just one example, at one point you have to open a gate.  Once you've opened it, one half crashes to the ground, whereas the other half is hanging off its hinges and keeps swinging.  And it's still swinging every time you pass through that scene.

The Black Bar Tips:  You can't turn them off but they're the best I've ever come across and shows how they should be done.  Unlike in some games, where you're told exactly what you need to do and where to do it, in this game they're really cryptic hints with a double meaning!  For example, at one point you need to put a mirror under a ray of sunlight to reflect light on something and the black bar tip is, "This should help me reflect on something."  Sometimes they were really funny and I was LOL.
  For example, you need to find a bird for a clock and the hint says, "The clock needs to go a little cuckoo."
  Or, "This flower could bite my fingers off and I'm quite attached to all of them."
  And sometimes I had to think about what they were hinting at.
  So I found them fun rather than annoying and wanted to read them, rather than trying to avoid them.

The Morphing Objects:  The morphing objects are really cute creatures that you have to wait to see.  Once they've morphed you can see most of them clearly, but you have to wait a bit for them to morph.  You could easily click on all the objects to find the morphs, but I thought they were so cute that I got upset when I accidentally clicked on one before it had morphed, as I wanted to see them properly before finding them.  They're also all named with a brief description in their room and, when you've collected them all, you get to play an extra bonus game, which is a surprise.  There are no instructions at all for the game but, after playing but having no idea whatsoever what I was supposed to be doing, I finally worked out that it's a game I'd played before so then knew what to do.  Not one of my finest moments, I can tell you!

Originality:  I found the story and gameplay very original.  Yes, you're searching for your brother, but you've waited 20 years for the mist to return that took him when you were both kids.  I also found collecting the painting fragments then the way you bring them to life really different.   Also the HOSs.  And, for example, there was a novel way of getting rid of bees.  You don't need to find - or make - a smoker, but rather you find a Venus Fly Trap and use that to get rid of them.

The Collector's Edition:

CE versus SE:  I recommend the SE but I'm not sorry I got the CE.

Length:  A tad shy of 6 hours for me.
  The bonus was only just over an hour.

Bonus Chapter:  Not necessary to complete the main story (which ends conclusively) but a good addition.  All new scenes on an island and underwater.
CE Extras:  Bonus chapter, replayable puzzles (not all HOSs
), morphs plus bonus game, achievements, plus the usual.
Morphing Objects:  Really cute creatures and, if you find them all, you get an achievement and a bonus game.
Collectibles:  Not really collectibles as you need them for the game but you have to find painting fragments.
Art:  Really interesting when you click on each piece to see the before and the after finished product.
Achievements:  Mostly the usual achievements but I really liked what you got for each one and how they were all displayed in their own room.  So much more original than just a list.
  However, some of them were much harder to get than others as most were actual achievements, not just all gameplay achievements that you have to accomplish to finish the game.

My Recommendation

I highly recommend this game, as either CE or SE, although in this case I think the SE would be enough.  But I'm not at all sorry I got the CE.

My rating
  I loved, LOVED, LOVED playing this game!  It's been added to my favourites list!


Last edited by stusue (October 6, 2014 4:01 pm)

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April 18, 2014 3:12 am  #9

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Fantasy Quest - Fairyland

Developer:  Rokapublish GmbH  (see Developers' List for full listing of games)

Date of Review:  18 April 2014  (game finished 17 April 2014)

Genre:  M3

Availability:  I played with my GameHouse FunPass but released by BFG on 8 April 2014


Calamity has struck a peaceful fairy kingdom and it’s up to you to set things right in this enchanting match-3 fantasy adventure. An evil sorcerer has sucked all the magic out of Fantasyland, leaving it polluted and the magical inhabitants trapped. If you can’t clean up the landscape and bring back the magic, this could be the end for our fairy friends! Are you ready?

You don’t have to do it alone! Four magic friends are here to help: the Wind Fairy, Fire Fairy, Lightning Fairy and Clover Fairy. With your puzzle-solving skills and their fantastic powers, there’s no obstacle you can’t overcome.

  *  Enjoy 120 levels of fantasy-inspired match-3 fun!
  *  Switch between three different match-3 game modes
  *  Explore twelve different enchanting locations
  *  Collect fanciful power-ups and use them wisely


Modes:       3 - Swap, Group, Line
Levels:       120 - 12 locations with 10 levels each - 9 x M3, 1 x swap jigsaw (4x5 square)
Powerups:  4 - right from the start, very easy to acquire, fun to use
Timed:        Yes, but only insofar as < 2 mins, < 3 mins, < 4 mins, extra points the quicker you are
Difficulty:    Easy Peasy
Graphics:   Excellent - everything is very clear and easy to see and I loved the board animations
Sound:       Great - play with it on!
Goal:          Each level - eliminate all yellow squares and make matches to heal all the fairies


This is a really easy M3 game.  But it is without doubt the most exciting M3 game I've ever played!!!!

It may be really easy but it's full on the whole time.  You have to concentrate as it simply goes so fast.  Out of the 108 M3 levels, I only took longer than 2 mins to complete a level maybe 3 or 4 times, and often I took less than 1 minute - I think my quickest was 33 seconds!
  And so much happens!  You get heaps of bombs and you can explode them all the time and that's so much fun as when they go off everything explodes, and everything drops down and then they all explode as matches are made, and you don't have to wait for everything to finish dropping before you continue making matches - hence everything happens really fast.  Some boards also have some rocks that block the objects from falling, but even they're easy to remove as matches are just there waiting for you to remove them.  You also have pearls that drop down that you remove from the bottom of the board.

I mainly only used 2 of the powerups - the one that shuffles the boards, which is really cool as everything kind of explodes as it all changes (fantastic graphics and sound) - and the one that gets rid of some of the yellow squares.  There are 2 other powerups - one that gets rid of one object for you - and one that adds bombs to the board.

Timer:  the game is timed but the timer goes up, not down.  You get extra points the quicker you finish a level - 2,000 points for finishing < 2 mins - 1,500 points for finishing < 3 mins - 1,000 points for finishing < 4 mins - I never took longer than 4 mins so don't know if you get 500 for finishing < 5 mins.  You also get points for each yellow square you get rid of (but a set number), for how many fairies you release (set number) and for how many matches you make.  I ended up with something like 20 million points!


It's very easy (but it would be great for beginners or kids so then not a negative).

The gameplay doesn't change throughout the game.  What you play in the first board you'll play until the very last board, except some boards have rocks that are easy to remove.  There's not much difficulty change, either, just a couple of boards that are several smaller ones rather than one big one.  There's a bit of variation in the board shapes but it doesn't change the gameplay much.  The last level at each location - the swap jigsaw - is also really easy as it's only 4 x 5 squares and you're shown the completed picture underneath.

It's really difficult to complete the boards, however, when playing in either group mode or line mode, as the boards are so small that you don't get many groups or lines.  However, you're able to change mode in the middle of each board, so I played the group mode until there were no more groups left and I'd exhausted all 4 fairy powerups, then changed to swap mode to finish the board.

If you play in all 3 modes the game would be a reasonable length.  However, I only enjoyed the Swap Mode in this particular M3 game and so it only took 2-3 hours. 

There are also no fun extras, like building a town, or achievements, gold stars, or anything like that.  There isn't even a fun map of the area!  The "map" consists of 12 pictures of each location, and that's it. 

My Recommendation:

It's really hard to recommend or not recommend this game.  It's the most exciting and fast M3 I've ever played, which I loved!
  However, it's very easy and not very long, with the same gameplay throughout and only a slight variation in the boards.  There are also no extras whatsoever.

I can, however, recommend this M3 game for anyone who wants a really easy game to fill in a few mins with a really exciting and fun game with great graphics and sound effects.  And, if you have a FunPass, I'd definitely recommend you give it a go as it's a lot of fun and, as I said, really exciting, which is a funny thing to say about an M3.

I definitely recommend that anyone who likes M3s tries the demo!

My Rating:
   I really liked playing this game.


What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
     Thread Starter

April 19, 2014 8:15 am  #10

Re: StuSue's Reviews

Rainforest Adventure

Publisher:  GameHouse

Date of Review:  19 April 2014  (game finished 19 April 2014)

Genre:  Match 3

Availability:  Released by GameHouse 4 July 2007.  Not available at BFG.


Follow a path of puzzling fun through a vibrant rainforest in this colorful new challenge. Swap tropical game pieces to make matching groups of three or more and turn the board to gold in more than 120 brain-bending levels. Show off your puzzle prowess and create perpetual cascades by creating matches while new game pieces are falling into place. Featuring stunning South American backdrops, engaging power-ups, and hours of family fun, Rainforest Adventure is a breathtaking experience for puzzlers of all ages!

  *  Over 120 Challenging Levels
  *  22 Bonus Levels
  *  8 Engaging Power-Ups
  *  Gorgeous South American Setting


Modes:       1 - Swap
Levels:       120 - 12 locations with 10 levels each - repeated but with more difficulty - 22 bonus levels
Powerups:  8 - plus gold suns you find in the bonus levels that get rid of one square - you can save them
Timed:        Yes, but fairly generous until near the end of the first run-through, then harder
Difficulty:    Starts easy but then gets progressivly harder with tricker boards and harder matches
Graphics:   Pretty basic as the game is old, but clear and easy to see
Sound:       Good
Goal:          Turn the entire board yellow with matches


I really like this game!
  It consists of 12 x 10 levels, with a bonus game at the end of each 10 levels, which is a board like a match-2 board but you can click on 5 of the squares and "win" whatever you find, like points, or more stars (which you need as the boards get progressively harder), or more clicks.  I finished the first 120 levels then, when I got to the end, it congratulated me on finishing then said that I could continue from the start for a more challenging game.  Then, when I continued, I went back to the start of the path through the forest, with the same early boards, but they were more difficult with fewer matches, starting at level 13-1.  I've only done the first 20 levels the second time through and wonder how difficult it will get by the end!
  I don't know if you only get 240 levels or if you can continue a third time.

ETA:  I've now done a bit more of the second lot of 120 levels and have had to repeat some levels multiple times until I finally completed them in time.  So the second lot are a lot harder than the first time you do them.


There are apparently 8 powerups - one clears all the surrounding squares and turns them yellow; one clears all the squares horizontally and turns them yellow; one does the same both vertically and horizontally; one gives you a dragonfly that flies around the board and turns all the squares it passes over yellow; one clears all the squares with the same picture and turns those squares yellow; one gives you lightening that clears random squares and turns them yellow; and there must be two more that I can't remember - I think one might give you an extra golden sun.  You earn them by making matches of at least 5 and they appear wherever you made the match and you use them by making matches with them.  You have to use them strategically to clear single squares around the edges of the board or ones in the middle of the board with blank spaces around them.

You also earn golden suns in the bonus levels if you click on the correct squares.  It's best if you save them up during the early levels, when you don't need them, so that you have a whole heap at the end when you really need them.

You also get an extra golden sun when you repeat a level that you've failed.  Each time you repeat a level you not only get all the suns back that you used in the level you've just failed, but you get an extra sun so that you eventually pass the level.  And in the second lot of 120 levels I had to repeat levels almost from the start, and the last one several times until I finally passed it.


The game is timed but it's fairly generous at first.  It gets progressively harder to finish the levels in the alloted time as the boards become harder and the matches harder to come by.  If you run out of time (water runs across the bottom of the board and when it runs off the end of the trough the level's finished) you just have to repeat the level.  I only had to repeat maybe 4 or 5 near the end of the first 120 levels, and only 1 so far in the first 20 levels of the second 120 levels. 


One negative, depending on your preference, is that there's only 1 mode of playing - swapping.  However, as that's the one I much prefer, it isn't a negative for me.  And, as you can play through the 120 levels at least once more once you've finished and all the levels are harder, that's better for me than 2 more modes that I hardly use.  And 240 levels, plus all the bonus levels, is a lot for an M3 game.

There are also no fun extras, like building a town, or achievements, gold stars, or anything like that.  There isn't even a fun map of the area!   This shows its age.  However, I had so much fun playing it - and found it challenging enough to make it fun but not frustrating - that I didn't miss the extras.

My Recommendation:

I wholeheartedly recommend this game for anyone who loves M3s.  It's old, the graphics aren't all that great, there are no extras, and the boards aren't all that big.  However, the challenge more than makes up for it.  The first levels took me a little over a minute, leading up to the last ones of the first 120 levels taking me over 6 minutes and sometimes I had to repeat them.
  And, playing the 120 levels at least twice, plus all the bonus levels, makes this a long game.

Unfortunately, it's not available at BFG as the Publisher is GameHouse.
  However, with the 50% discount sale on this weekend at GameHouse, it would only be $4.99 for non-members, $2.99 for members.  I plan on getting it with my PCC that expires tomorrow as it's a game that I will definitely replay.

It's definitely worth at least trying the demo.

My Rating:
   I loved playing this game.

Last edited by stusue (April 19, 2014 1:36 pm)

What you're doing today is important
because you're exchanging a day of your life for it.
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