http://www.gadgetspeak.com/review/Lazy_Turtle_Games_The_Far_Kingdom_-_Awak-896593.html

Break the Spell 

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When awakening from a deep sleep, you need to visit a Whispering Wood.

Developed by Lazy Turtle Games, The Far Kingdoms - Awakening Quest sets you on the trail of rescuing the Kingdom of Elysia from a sleeping curse.  This curse is the work of an evil witch named Morgana.  Not only has the witch cast this magic spell but she has also stolen a magic amulet which gives her special powers.  You are cast in the role of Princess Arianna who, on awakening from a deep sleep, discovers everybody else in the castle is under the effects of the spell and unable to help you restore matters.

With little help on offer from the sleeping castle staff, you need to turn to the creatures of the forest for assistance.  You quickly discover that in order to defeat the witch and break the curse, you will need to travel to various locations and complete a series of tasks.  Once completed these tasks will enable you to find an enchanted mirror that is concealed within a place known as the Whispering Wood.

Operating within an environment with full screen viewing, a custom cursor. adjustable volume levels for different aspect aspects plus an adjustable delay to recharge the Hint and Skip features, your character quickly teams up with a rather chatty squirrel called Sylvestra.  On their travels this dynamic duo must meet various static characters.  Always willing to chat, with printed text dialogue, these characters are only too keen to help but generally expect a favour to be given in return.  As with the numerous other tasks needing completion in this game, the favours  will either be of the Hidden Object type or playing a hand of Solitaire.

Hidden Object game play follows the standard pattern of combining a typical and appropriate scene with a text list of objects that need to be found.  As they will not be enough space to show the full lost in one go, some object entries will only be added when enough space occurs.  You are provided with a Hint feature that will need to be recharged after each use.  A magnifying glass is also provided allowing you to zoom into areas of the scene in the search for required objects.

Mixed in with the Hidden Object scenes are a series of Solitaire layout challenges.  You will need to remove cards in a chain sequence that are either one higher or one lower than the current card.  Occasionally certain cards will be overlaid with a symbol that will need to be cleared before the card can be selected for removal.  This symbol could represent a padlock, ropes, bricks or a requirement to be preceded by a run of card removals.  To assist with the removal of cards that do not form part of a chain, you are provided with an Undo feature and a Wild Card Joker that will be recharged after each use to help ensure a clearance of the layout is completed.

After the completion of each Hidden Object  and Solitaire interlude you are presented with the same appearance of Princess Arianna to congratulate you on your success.  Obviously the Princess only has a single garment which she wears on the time and automatically adopts the same pose when greeting somebody.  This lack of variety could certainly put off players so they might not encounter the problem I met when a Hidden Object sequence refused to acknowledge the finding of one of the listed objects which happened to be a cannon ball.  I had to replay this scene several times before it could be completed.

I downloaded my copy of this disappointing title from Gamehouse.com where it is priced at $9.99.  You can also download the game from Big Fish Games priced at £7.93,  The game requires a 1.0 GHz processor with 512MB of RAM and 244MB of hard disk space running Windows 7 and later. 

The Far Kingdoms - Awakening Quest | Big Fish Games

The Far Kingdoms - Awakening Quest | GameHouse

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OverallLazy Turtle Games The Far Kingdom - Awakening Quest rated 52 out of 100

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