Returning Mirrors 

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Some mirrors return a reflection but then some attempt to draw you into a world where evil rules.

The Mirror Mysteries Forgotten Kingdoms

Following the success of Mirror Mysteries, GoGii has developed a follow up offering entitled Mirror Mysteries 2: Forgotten Kingdoms.  As with the original game, and obvious from its title, mirror do play a major part in this battle between good and evil which is conducted in a Hidden Object Adventure environment spread over worlds connected via portals.

You are cast in the role of an investigator who has been hired to investigate the disappearance of Tommy Bryant.  According to messages received from Tommy, before his disappearance, he had discovered that a mysterious mirror had been seen being delivered to Berkshire Manor.  He had decided to investigate to see what was going on.  Obviously something was going on as he disappeared.

Prior to setting out to discover that had happened to Tommy, you can create profiles for individual players and make certain adjustments to the game playing environment.  Named profiles can contain customised levels of volume for sound effects, music and the spoken dialogue featured in cut scenes used through the game.  These cut scenes can be cut short if necessary.

There are also options to play the game in full screen or windowed mode with a system cursor.  The game can be played with a choice of difficulty levels categorised as Casual, Advanced or Custom.  With Casual level you get a fast recharging of the Hint and Skip features plus an interactive tutorial and visual help.  For the more experienced player, Advanced level has a slower recharge rate with no tutorial or visual help.  Custom level allows you to adjust the settings for the recharge rate and whether to have a tutorial and visual help.

Your full screen view of the action is overlaid with the tools that are available to you.  On the left is the Hint feature in the form of a mirror which becomes cracked after each use and remains not available until the cracks repair themselves.  Centrally positioned is the inventory holding the items you have collected during your investigation.  Automatically recording your discoveries is a journal which sits on the right and can be accessed at any time.

As your mouse cursor moves around the various scenes, it will change shape to indicate when a specific action is possible.  A Hand will reveal when an item, such as a shard of glass, can be picked up.  A Magnifying Glass appears when you can zoom into an area for a closer look while Gears indicate there is a problem to solve.  Arrows are used to show exit points to other scenes and a speech bubble means you can communicate with another character.

Hidden object game play, marked by an outbreak of sparkles, requires you to find a series of pieces that have been categorised into sections.  Once all the pieces in a section are collected then they will reform to create a tool, such as a rotor arm, brush or dragonfly, that can be used to reveal another item you require.  The reward for completing a Hidden Object session could be anything from a shard of glass, goggles or a lever that will be required to complete a later task.

Puzzles, as such, tend to be rather sparse on the ground.  They usually involve carrying out a basic task such as pulling levels, collecting coloured water, pressing buttons in the correct order or putting together a mirror so as to open up a portal to another kingdom with its mixture of dream-like scenarios and weird locations.

As I missed the original Mirror Mysteries title, I am unable to comment as to how well this follow compares with the original offering.  While I found Mirror Mysteries 2 to be reasonably challenging, I did feel it was a little light on content that was spread over four chapters.  A time-limited version of this game is available to try out before deciding whether to pay the $9.99 for the unlimited version.  System specifications call for a 2.0GHz processor with 1024MB of RAM running Windows XP and later.

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OverallGoGii Mirror Mysteries 2 Forgotten Kingdom rated 64 out of 100

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