Given how much I enjoyed the Mystery of the Crystal Portal games, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review Treasure Seekers II: The Enchanted Canvases. Like the Crystal Portal games, Treasure Seekers is a hidden object game with a story that keeps you engaged as you go along. But aside from that, how is the game?
Help Nelly find and save her brother from a mysterious Romanian castle! Dive into the castle’s magical pictures and discover the secrets of the Philosophers’ Stone. Use your Hidden Object skills in Treasure Seekers: The Enchanted Canvases to break the spells on the castle and track down Tom. Find the wicked person responsible for imprisoning him and take home the ancient and priceless treasure!
• Multitasking with 4.2+
• Game Center Support
• 6 Specific sites of action
• 50 Scenes and Mini Games
• 2 Game modes – casual and advanced
• Impressive graphics
• Beautiful music
• Captivating storyline
• Play at your own pace!
As with the Crystal Portal games we are faced with solving puzzles and advancing the plot using the ‘hidden object’ game genre mechanics. As a reminder this is different from the traditional ‘point & click’ adventure game genre exemplified by Destination: Treasure Island (or Myst). In a hidden object game you are directed towards an item you need to help advance the plot, and when you select it you need to locate the items indicated by the pictures in the rings.
Also similar to the Crystal Portal games you spend much of the game chasing someone around – in this case your brother! You find clues that he left without you seeking the Philosopher’s Stone (possibly meeting up with Nicolas Flamel along the way), so naturally you head to the castle to find your brother!
This is my sole real complaint about the game – you jump from the prologue right into exploring ‘enchanted canvases’ without answering the core question: WHY? OK, so I get to a castle to seek my brother and then BAM there is a painting shimmering in front of me waiting to be clicked. Once I click it I am off on my adventure … but I restarted the game twice to see if I somehow missed the explanation. I didn’t.
Similar to Mystery of the Crystal Portal 2 you can choose ‘casual’ or ‘advanced’ mode, which differ in how you are able to get hints throughout the game. In ‘advanced’ mode you have to wait quite a while between hints, but in ‘casual’ you can get hint after hint without consequence.
As before, for many ‘casual’ will be a better option. First, because the items themselves are relatively hard to find. Lots of things are cleverly camouflaged against the setting, making them hard to locate. Then there are cascading puzzles from the start – and not just that, many puzzles require you to revisit areas you already ‘completed’ to grab clues or specific items. It is a really cool approach, but can be very frustrating for those seeking a simple game.
I find that Treasure Seekers builds on the sequential puzzle themes found in other hidden-object games. You will often be missing several sub-items, only to find that some are other container objects, some are puzzles, and others need to be uncovered using items from different locations!
Also, there are mini-games associated with several tasks, such as when you need to direct light from start to finish of an area. These can be skipped if needed but provide a solid challenge.
The control scheme is identical to the Crystal Portal and other hidden-object games and fortunately everything works just as well. It has become second-nature to operate these puzzles and I feel these G5 games are the gold standard against which all other hidden object games are measured at this point – so fortunately most games use pretty much the same system.
Treasure Seekers II has full Game Center support whereas the iPad version wasn’t recognized. Unfortunately I played a lot of the game sitting in a parking lot waiting for my son to get out of wrestling practice, and some of the achievements never properly registered. There are 14 achievements in total – and when I look at my list I see the one that says I solved every challenge … but I’m missing a couple of the individual challenge awards!
My only disappointment was the introduction jumping right into the action as noted before. The game lasts for a few hours and provides solid entertainment value. I recommending this game heartily – and as noted before I am always looking forward to the next G5 Entertainment hidden item game: they are a blast to play and I find myself relaxed and absorbed, like curling up with a good book.
Here is a trailer for Treasure Seekers II: The Enchanted Canvases:[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2vRllYI6u2g[/youtube]
Review: Treasure Seekers II: The Enchanted Canvases
Where to Buy:
What I Like: Loads of challenging puzzles; Great variety of locations and challenges; Interesting Story with old and new characters; Detailed visuals; Excellent controls
What Needs Improvement: Beginning of game is a head-scratcher