Know Your Trivia
Having recently finished taking a look at a game with the word “Hidden” in its title, I was unsure of what to expect when another game with “Hidden” in its title found its way on to my computer. I quickly realised that this second offering was totally different. To give it its full moniker, “Einstein’s Diaries: Hidden Facts: The Hawaiian Island” was developed by Point8 Games. This game arrived classified as a Hidden Object game while offering other options but very little in the way of instructions to help the player.
Firing up this title brings up a series of double choice options featuring a mixture of facts and Hidden Object scenes plus a chance to make minimal adjustments to the playing environment which incidentally is single player only. There is no option to create profiles for different family members, so everybody uses the same data and progresses together. The game can be played using a number of European languages and I stuck with the default English. There is a “take it or leave it” option as you can have music and sound effects or just turn them off completely – you can, I suppose, adjust the volume level using your speaker controls. And that is about it with regards to adjusting the playing environment as full or windowed viewing plus a choice of difficulty level does not form part of this game.
Each level of this game, based on fun facts (although I am not altogether convinced that a fact about a snake bite causing the victim to bleed from every orifice and then take five days to die in agony could be regarded as fun) and trivia while on a Hawaiian holiday. You are given a choice, selected from two windows, of the locations you can explore in order to discover the various objects listed in text format. One of these items will lead to one of the game’s fun facts. Obviously care has been taken when integrating these items into the chosen scene even when you might suppose that a particular object might really stand out – for example a parrot in an underwater scene was not easy to spot.
With the sound effects turned on, a correct selection is rewarded with an attention drawing loud beep while an incorrect selection produces a pulsing circle and silence. Although initially it may appear that the game does not feature a Hint option, there is one that springs into operation to pinpoint a yet-to-be-discovered object. You need to click on a magnifying glass icon.
Depending upon the chosen scenes, often populated with a similar group of objects of which ten need to be located, you with be proverb with a titbit of information that might, or might not, have something to do with the Hawaiian holiday site. For instance, did you know that ravens have a close affinity with wolves and like to settle down to a meal with these four legged pack hunters or that a mouse could fit through a hole no bigger that a ball point pen diameter? In total there are 200 fun facts waiting to be revealed regarding the Hawaiian Islands as you work your way through this title.
Fortunately, giving the player a relieving break from a steady diet of Hidden Object game play, each Hidden Object session is followed by a mini-game. Different types of mini-games are used. You might need to play a game of Match 3; unjumble an image broken up into 30 movable tiles; spot the differences between two side-by-side versions of the same image; clear a mah-jongg board; or solve a jigsaw. Each type of these min-games will display an indication as to a possible move or hint should you hesitate too long over what to do next.
As you progress through the various Hidden Object levels and learn the 200 facts scattered throughout the game, an automatic Diary feature will record the discovered facts and connected location. I feel the main Hidden Object element of this game is more suited to those with eyes far younger, and brighter, than mine. I often struggled to find all the items in many scenes and was reduced to making use of the Hint feature which I only found by chance. This game is of the type you might play for a short, sharp session to fill an idle moment rather than conduct a heavy duty play time experience.
My copy of the game was downloaded from Gamehouse.com where it is available for $9.99. System requirements call for a 1GHz processor with 256MB of RAM and 200MB of hard disk space running Windows 7 and later.
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