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Tackle the Daemon
As one of the world’s leading Paranormal Investigating Detective, you, cast in the role of Jane Morrison, are one of the first to be called upon when unexplained incidents occur. In this case you are set the task of investigating the episode that has become know as Mysteries of the Past – Shadow of the Daemon. This begins with a report concerning the disappearance of a father and his son from a hotel establishment. You immediately set out to visit the site of the disappearance from the Big Pine Lodge and meet up with the hotel manager, Mr. Clarkson who reported the disappearance.
When playing this game, you can select from Casual, Normal or Expert difficulty level. Depending upon your choice, you get a different rate of charging for the Hint and Skip features, the use of glints and sparkles to identify possible active areas, the size of a mis-click penalty and the amount of information present on the game’s Map feature.
While the game is designated as being supplied in Collector’s Edition format, there is little evidence of this feature on the main title screen apart from a blocked single area. So presumably the game’s developer feel that the player will need to work and make sufficient progress in the main game before being granted access to this feature. In fact you need to complete the game, before being granted access to this apparent bonus feature.
Spread over four chapters, each covering a different location made use of during the game, this title does provide the player with a number of tools running across the bottom of each scene. Positioned centrally is an inventory storing the items that are collected. Any item in the inventory accompanied by a plus sign will require some work before its use. To the left of the inventory is a journal with sections for notes and tasks while the right side holds a map, once found, and the game’s hint feature. Additional assistance is provided by the mouse cursor which changes shape when over areas where possible actions could be implemented.
Your initially starting point in this investigation is, as mentioned, Big Pine Lodge which appears rather dilapidated despite being a going concern a few days earlier. The only living person there is the hotel manager, Mr. Clarkson, and a rather savage wolf plus the wandering appearance of a smoky entity. As you progress through the game to carry out your investigation, other characters occupying the area are rather scarce on the ground. The odd occasions you do meet somebody, they will be ready to converse by delivering their dialogue in spoken and printed format..
When not wandering around and meeting an occasional character, you will be faced by various tasks including a variety of mini game puzzles and Hidden Object action. A skip option is available with the mini game puzzles and Hidden Object action makes use of a variety of styles including text lists, double item recognition and the replacement of items in a scene.
Overall I was disappointed with this title. It felt a little stretched out with too much padding for my taste. There was also the further disappointment of the minimal bonus offerings of a few wallpapers and a bonus chapter. There was no options to replay mini games or hidden object game play. I downloaded my copy of the game from Gamehouse.com where it is priced at $19.99. The game requires a 2.0 GHz processor with 1024 MB of RAM and 740MB of hard disk space running Windows XP and later.
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