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Stop the Giant
Fairy Tale Mysteries – The Beanstalk is, as you might suppose, a retelling of the familiar traditional tale of Jack and the Beanstalk. However, rather than the expected approach of Jack encountering and defeating a race of giants living in the clouds, the game’s developers, Gogii, has taken the decision to embellish the basic story with numerous side-tracks and additional elements. The resulting product comes in Collector’s Edition format with the enhanced tale being accompanied by various bonus features.
While certain of the bonus content is available immediately, other sections of this content is only accessible once you have completed the main Beanstalk game. Falling into the first category are sections that deal with Concept Art and Wallpaper which allow you to save and view various scenes. You also get a Strategy Guide to lead you through the game’s different tasks and detours. A bonus chapter and the ability to replay movie scenes from the game become available once you completed the main game.
Prior to tackling the Beanstalk, you can create profiles to record the progress of different players. Adjustments can be made to the volume levels of music, sound effects and voice dialogue used in the game. A setting is available to view the game in full screen mode using a custom cursor. There is a choice of three levels of difficulty as you select from Casual, Advanced or Custom. Depending upon your choice, you will be allocated different Hint and Skip recharging speeds plus a delay before glints appear to identify active areas in a scene.
You are cast in the role of a Certified Investigator from the Grimm Brothers’ Fairy Tale Institute. Your fist task, as a recently graduated agent, is to investigate the appearance of a magic bean that could disturb the equilibrium between the Guardians who protect the world and a race of Giants. Fortunately the Giants had been reduced to a single member but, if let loose on the world, this Giant could wreck havoc. You must help the Guardians bring this single Giant under control.
Providing assistance to help make progress, and carry out these tasks in the game, is an arrangement of tools. These tools consist of a Journal recording your findings, a Map of the current world as you switch between environment, Inventory and the Hint/Skip feature. While this arrangement is fairly standard, the situation quickly changes as you are set various on-going tasks that often need to be carried out simultaneously and overlap thus increasing the game’s difficulty.
In order to keep the player up-to-date as to the current state of each task as it is carried out, the Inventory often has tabs, representing the different tasks currently running, which take over the space in the Inventory. Each tab will allow you to view the required items for each task as you switch between them. As the game’s different scenes relate to different tasks, it is relatively easy to become a little confused regarding what is necessary until you get to use to this approach. The switching aspect does take a while to get use to especially during the latter stages of the game when your focus of attention is constantly being changed.
During the game two different formats of presenting Hidden Object game play will be used. When identified by an outbreak of sparkles, you will be faced with a combination of a cluttered scene combined with a text list of items. Any entry that is coloured cyan in the list will require an additional action before it can be selected. When Hidden Object game play is required as part of a tab task then you will be shown images of the items that need to be located within a scene.
Along with its multi-task approach and its dual Hidden Object game play, this well-drawn game has several mini game puzzles that could easily stretch users. You also get spoken dialogue between the different characters to help draw you into the game. I have seen this game advertised on Amazon priced between £1.99 (used) and £11.98 (new). The game requires a 1.8 GHz processor with 1024MB of RAM running Windows Vista and later.
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