Midnight Mysteries: Haunted Houdini|
Midnight Mysteries Haunted Houdini makes the unsurprising leap from PC to iPad as the newest hidden object game to hit mobile platforms. Ironically, I just reviewed another hidden object game from MumboJumbo this week called Pickers, a game that sets the bar extremely high when it comes to the hidden object genre because it dared to skimp on story and try something new.
Haunted Houdini is all about story and mystery which only makes the item hunting that much more contrived, still, if you are into these games then rest assured you wonít find a prettier collection of screens to ponder while picking out items from your numerous scavenger hunt lists. Occasionally youíll get to manipulate the inventory by combine two pieces to make something more desirable or functional.
A hint system is there to back you up in case you get stuck looking for something or trying to solve any of the games diabolical puzzles Ė just find the hidden ravens in each scene to fuel your hint pool. As always, the puzzles are quite brilliant and some border on the insanely difficult. Thanksfully the game has been out on PC for awhile and numerous strategy guides are available online if you get stuck.
The graphics are outstanding, both in the static visual screens for item hunting as well as the puzzle sequences and the interesting interactions with several ghosts. Each scene has subtle animations that bring these works of art to limited but stunning life. Some of the dialogue runs on a bit too long for those looking for more questing and less talking, but the story is quite good if you stick with it. The sound effects are suitably creepy and the music perfectly fits the story and the analytical gameplay.
Houdiniís greatest trick is making at least $7 vanish from your wallet then having the audacity to offer to upgrade you to the Collectorís Edition for $3 more in order to get a bonus chapter, a new game mode and strategy guide, or you can purchase those items individually. You can even purchase additional Hint Ravens if you canít find enough to get you by. I can see this game as a $2.99 to $3.99 game but $6.99 seems just a bit too greedy for a PC game that has already been around for a few months; especially on the app store that is currently flooded with similar genre titles. For those who like to find things more than immerse themselves in narrative, you can unlock and play the Hidden Object Unlimited mode and skip everything else.
Value is my only real concern with Midnight Mysteries Haunted Houdini. Aside from the steep cost of admission, this is one of the better hidden object puzzle adventures out there; one with a great story, fantastic visuals, and immersive audio that will take you many hours to complete. If youíre a fan of Samantha Swift or any of the other Midnight Mysteries games then youíll definitely want to add this to your collection no matter the cost.