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Mystic Diary - Haunted Island is a Hidden Object Adventure game. This title was developed by Sunray Game. Following the well-established pattern, this title allows you to create profiles to record the progress of individual players as they delve into the mysteries of this environment plus make adjustments to the gaming environment. Different volume levels can be set for background music, sound effects and the environment as you travel between different locations sometimes as if by magic and by an air balloon which has an unfortunate demise. There are also options to view the game in full screen mode and use a custom cursor.
Your role in the game is that of somebody following up rumours of a ghost magician having been seen in a remote location. After reaching this location, which turns out to be a cottage in the forest, you discover a book which is the Mystic Diary of the game's title. This book has been imbued with the ability to view the spirit world and communicate with ghosts - just what you need for a cosy Friday night in with a bag of popcorn. Any advice you receive from the encountered ghosts who appear in head and shoulders format is automatically recorded in the diary as your search criteria changes to the magician brothers namely Victor and Gustar.
Providing assistance in the search for the brothers is a tool bar running across the bottom of the screen and a mouse cursor that changes shape to indicate when different options are available. The tool bar is made up of the diary, inventory holding items collected, plus Hint and Goal features. Cursor representing an arrow, magnifying glass and pointing finger will indicate when you can move in a particular direction, examine an area or pick up an object which tends to be labelled.
An outbreak of sparkles will indicate when a Hidden Object scene is available. Such scenes contain the usual format of a cluttered scene and a text list of the items to be located. While the text list is fairly straightforward, the cluttered scenes could cause some difficulty with numerous small objects and an occasional dark or shadowy environment. Also if you indulge in excessive sessions of object fishing as you search for required items, the screen will be misted over for a few seconds. There is some repetition in the locations used for Hidden Object game play but there will be variety in the items that need to be found.
Unlike the earlier Mystic Diary game review earlier, this game's Hint feature does what you might expect in some circumstances. When used it will identify a yet-to-be-found object in the current scene. However you will need to wait for approximately a minute before you can use the Hint feature again.
However this familiar approach does not happen throughout the game When not involved in Hidden Object game play, the Hint feature might not behave as you might expect. Rather than suggest your next action as how best to proceed, the Hint feature offers a suggestion that you "drag and release an inventory item onto the Hint button…. to receive a clue as to the item's usage". When you carry out this task, you will be shown a windowed view of the scene where the item can be used. You will need to remember the location of the revealed view as it is not recorded.
With the magician brothers involved in this game, you should not be surprised to discover that the game contains elements of magic. Spell scrolls will need to be collected from time-to-time. These spells could involve potions and the required ingredients that need to be collected to complete certain tasks. There are also a number of cryptic puzzles that will need to be solved.
Mystic Dairy 2 - Haunted Island requires a 600 MHz processor with 128MB of RAM and 140MB of Hard Disk space running Windows XP and later. You can download a copy of the game from Big Fish Games priced at $2.99.
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