Thursday, August 30, 2007

Interpol: The Trail of Dr. Chaos

Thursday of Mystery: International Detective Work!

Interpol is the world police organization. As a member of that prestigious group you are assigned to hunt down the evil Dr. Chaos and bring him to justice. It isn't a pure mystery, but the variety of messy rooms in which you look for clues is certainly mysterious. I wonder at why objects are put back into the rooms when previously I'd removed them as evidence?

Interpol really isn't my favorite Hidden Object game, but it is better than some and worth a lunchtime worth of play if you dig spy movies and I Spy gameplay.

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Magician's Handbook: Cursed Valley

Thursday of Mystery: A Cursed Valley with a Magical History

As you sit bored watching TV you see an advertisement for a book on learning magic and are immediately entranced. After ordering the book you learn that its pages will only reveal themselves in a cursed valley that has long been avoided and whose history is shrouded in mystery.

Going to the valley you find yourself on the hunt for magical items as you learn new spells and take on new challenges. The Magician's Handbook: Cursed Valley is a fun hidden object game with a LOT of text to read. It's well worth reading and playing as humor and entertainment are brimming from this can't be missed game!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Chromadrome 2

Get your mouse ready for a real race!

Chromadrome 2 is NOT your average game. Though it bears some similarities to Snail Mail, Chromadrome is bigger, better and faster! In fact few games are as fast as Chromadrome 2. While that may seem a double-edged sword, the truth is, Chromadrome only gets more exciting the faster it goes.

You play as a golden ball as you move down a track, spinning, flipping, jumping and flying as you go. You can shoot with your left-mouse button, but that is just to clear things out of your way that would otherwise slow you down. This game isn't a shooter, it's about the thrill of high speeds. It's exciting like a roller-coaster! Chromadrome 2 is definitely a game to check out :).

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Mysteryville 2

Thursday of Mystery: Return to a strange town...don't be a stranger!

Mysteryville 2 is a curious place filled with very animated and quirky characters. After solving the mystery of why the cats were disappearing in the first game, our reporter turned sleuth is back for some R&R in the sequel when things go a bit strange. For the first thing, the person she's come to meet is no where to be seen, and strange clues and notes put a shroud of danger everywhere.

Like most hidden object games, Mysterville 2 has a lot going for it. It's fun to hunt down objects in the rooms, when done correctly, and the sheer variety of searches that you do in the game keep it interesting where other games can sometimes become boring. However, what really kept me coming back was the fun and interesting storyline that was strange, but not fantastical. The game is well worth a look!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Neon Wars

Wild Wednesday: More Neon than the Las Vegas Strip

For Wednesday this week I thought I'd take a look at a game that is a bit on the wild side. Neon Wars is a game that has a lot in common with the popular Xbox Live Arcade game Geometry Wars. Both feature simple graphics that feature lots of cool explosions that look more like fireworks than they do like a typical game's explosion.
The big difference between the two games comes in the way that they are played. While Geometry Wars does provide a fun short diversion, Neon Wars is in for the long haul. In 3-5 minutes your game of Geometry Wars is over, whereas after 20 minutes, your game of Neon Wars is really just beginning. The game gets better as it goes with more exciting power-ups and a sense of connection to the game play that will put you in a Zen state. For something interesting and different it is definitely worth a look.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Bejeweled 2

Classic Monday: Bejeweled 2!

Bejeweled 2 is one of those games that just about everyone on the planet has played and with good reason. It is the essence of easy to pick-up and play gaming. Simple and easy to play, Bejeweled 2 is a fun time-waster.

Players take an epic adventure around the galaxy while making mesmorizing matches of shiny gems. The swap/match-3 mechanic has been improved upon several times since Bejeweled was first released, but for many people it doesn't get any better than the original...or at least no better than the sequel to the original!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Hap Hazard

A retro-feeling platformer that is like Jumpman...

Long before there was Mario, there was another character climbing ladders, running along platforms and avoiding enemies. Fans of the original Jumpman will no doubt be excited by Hap Hazard, a new game that is a VERY nicely updated approach to that old classic.

The game is certainly hard, but with practice it is a lot of fun. Climbing ladders, slipping down ropes and making jumps that are just the right height not to kill your character lead to a lot of challenging fun. Hap Hazard comes from developer Raptisoft, also responsible for Hamsterball and Chuzzle. All 3 are certainly worth a look! This is a great developer who makes great games :).

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Stone of Destiny

Yeah, it's another hidden object game...

A book, an envelope and a map. When your uncle turns up missing these are all the clues that you have at your disposal. So, like any good detective (nephew?) would, you start looking for all of the items on the list. Putting all the items together leads to a dark magic spell. (which you actually draw on the screen with your mouse!) The spell opens a doorway and off you go to find more items on more lists.

Stone of Destiny has some original pieces, but for the most part this is another Hidden Object game for those who love to see the new story behind these types of games. If you are looking for something to play during lunch, this game will be an entertaining 60 minutes.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Sally's Salon

Think hair-dressing meets Diner Dash...

There have been quite a few of the click-management games of late and Sally's Salon is one of the better ones.

In this game you control sally as she shampoos, cuts, dries, dyes and plucks in her hair salon. There were quite a few cool features, such as cycling through different haircut styles or dye colors for each of your clients, and the ability to purchase a new upgrade for your shop (like someone to do all the shampooing for you or magazines for your waiting customers).

Some of the more recent Diner Dash games (Flo on the Go I'm looking at you!) have been a bit more complicated than fun. Sally's Salon gets back to what made the original Diner Dash a blast to play and does it with even more fun and variety. Worth checking out!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Ricochet Infinity

I figured I'd start with a great game, and Ricochet Infinity is a great game!

For fans of breakout/arkanoid games, Ricochet should be a familiar title. The original game, Ricochet Xtreme is one of the games that first got me into downloadable games. I was a big fan of DX-Ball2, and Ricochet Xtreme took many of the same ideas to the next level.

Ricochet Infinity does the same thing, taking the tried and true brick-busting approach and turns it up a notch with a slew of new powerful power-ups, the ability to control the ball and in-game level downloads, which make for near infinite replayability.

The ball control is called 'recall' and works as if you had a tether connected to the ball that you can yank back on to get the ball right back to you, or pull gently on to change the direction that the ball is traveling. The ability to modify where the ball is going changes the way the game is played, making it more fun and engaging. Of course the new power-ups like the nuclear beam and ball explosion are kind of fun too ;). Ricochet Infinity was a fun time waster that kept me wanting to play way beyond the end of the 60 minute trial!