Rating: ESRB – Everyone
Hidden object games are the rage these days and there is definitely no shortage of these type of games out there on the market. To be able to sell well, a hidden object game will have to shine in usually more ways than one.
It is a surprise then that Amazing Adventures: The Lost Tomb, which was released 3 years back, still remains quite a popular game. With its simple and elegant core game play that involves searching for 10 items from 22 different locations over 20 missions that is divided into 100 levels, plus a selection of mini games you get to play in between, it is no surprise then that this game did pretty good. In truth, this game has done so well for the developer SpinTop Games, that they have to date released 3 newer versions of the franchise.
The background to The Lost Tomb is very straightforward. You are an adventurer who travels around the world searching for forgotten and lost treasures (in a pinch, this kinds of remind me of my review on Indiana Jones featured earlier this week). For your very first adventure, you will travel to Egpyt to find the Lost Tomb amidst several interesting locations such as the Sphinx, the Great Pyramid of Giza, and the River Nile.
|Welcome to The Lost Tomb|
Dispensing with any significant background story, you are thrown into the thick of things in The Lost Tomb. A few dialog boxes will pop up now and then to teach you how to play the game; not that there is a lot to learn, but the game is so simple that even a kid could enjoy it.
You are presented with a list of 10 randomly determined items and your task is to find these objects that is hidden in that location. Now, each of the 22 locations you visit will have on average about 75 other objects in the level, so good luck on finding just these 10 alone.
|Learn how to play|
One thing that The Lost Tomb does well is to provide you with an unlimited hint button. Clicking on it will give you a random hint for one of the objects on the list. A set of sparkling effects will illuminate the object for a short while, after which the hint button will then go inactive for a time. Once it recharges, you can activate the hint button again. The only drawback is that your score gets penalized for the use of the hint button.
I foresee more frequent use of the Hint button in Timed mode since it is a more stressful experience. You need to complete finding all objects as soon as possible as any time remaining will be used in the next phase – that would be the mini-games.
At the end of each hidden object level, you get to play a randomly chosen mini-game. There are 4 types of mini-games available in The Lost Tomb. They are:
- Jigsaw puzzle – Take a couple of jigsaw pieces and piece back the picture shown in the background. Incidentally, the picture shows the next location you will be visiting..
- Spot the differences – The screen is divided into two halves; you must try and spot the differences between them. Click any difference you find with your mouse (on either half of the screen). Find all differences to continue your search for The Lost Tomb.
- Memory match – Just as in Concentration, you must find matching pairs of squares by clicking on any two at a time. The squares flip over for a short while before they hide themselves again, making it essential to use your memory just a little bit.
- Tile Swapping puzzle – As if a jigsaw puzzle wasn’t enough, you also have a tile swapping mini-game. Select any two tiles and they will automatically swap their positions. The number of tiles in this mini-game is much more than that for jigsaw puzzles.
One other thing, hidden inside each of these locations are scarabs that you must find. If you manage to collect 21 scarabs on your journey, you unlock the secret game mode where all levels can be accessed.
|Spot the Differences|
The background artwork in The Lost Tomb is very good, and the objects are all nicely done. There is an Egyptian theme to the graphics which gives it a unique cultural feel. Even the choice of color makes an impact here – from the burnished copper tones of the interface, to the white note pad you see gracing the end of a mission, to the lush color choices at every different location, it really is a fine hidden object experience.
The music has a decidedly Middle Eastern beat and twang to it. The sound effects are quite alright for this sort of game. There are no voice overs at all.
Amazing Adventures: The Lost Tomb will help fulfill any craving you may have in finding hidden objects. There are about 2000 objects in the game, so get going right from the start if you want to find everything.
|The sparklies at upper right reveal an object|
- A great hidden object game that features a ton of objects to find.
- Four simple mini-games to play.
- Great colorful graphics.
- Objects you need to find look big and clear for the most part.
- An intelligent word list that makes you think. Finding shells could either mean sea shells or ammunition shells.
- The idea of unlocking a special game mode by finding scarabs is a novel idea.
|Jigsaw puzzles – a favorite pastime|
- An infinite use hint button tends to make the experience less of a challenge.
- Hidden objects are placed at a location.. The game relies on the large numbers of hidden objects to overwhelm you.
- The wordlist that comes up sometimes tasks you to find more than 10 objects which kind of raises the bar unfairly in timed mode. The game does this by asking you to find several similar items, for example 2 bottles of wine, or 3 shells.
- Gets repetitive especially in the later part of the game.
- With only 22 locations, you will get to see some places very often.
|Coz I’m the wanderer…|
If you love hidden object games then Amazing Adventure: The Lost Tomb comes highly recommended. It contains a lot of hidden objects waiting for you to find, and the wonderful graphics helps to make it a pleasing experience overall.
At the same time, you may also want to consider getting yourself a copy of part 2 (Around the World) and 3 (The Caribben Secret) of the franchise. You will get more hidden object fun similar to what is available in the first part, although this time round, there is some back story and the experience is much more richer.
|Unlock the secret game mode for even more fun|