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The Return of Old Enemies
As one of the Seven Deadly Sins, Greed is also the title of this next Hidden Object adventure game. Developed by Urchin Games with the sub-title of Old Enemies Return, the game opens as two characters provide introductory dialogue through quivering lips as a large safe slams shut. Fortunately the game’s developers seem to have had second thoughts and have dispensed with the quivering lips approach which, quite frankly, looked ridiculous. Other characters deliver their dialogue through closed mouths which I found more acceptable.
Various adjustments can be made to the gaming environment and difficulty level through the creation of profiles representing individual players. You can adjust the volume level for background music, sound effects and voice dialogue. The game can be played in full or wide screen mode with a custom cursor. Four levels of difficulty are available as you select from Easy, Hard, Expert or Custom. Depending upon your choice, different speed rates will be applied to the charging of the Hint and Skip features plus when additional assistance will make an appearance in the form of visual indications. All levels of difficulty feature an optional tutorial which will introduce you to the game’s various features.
In this follow up title to Greed: The Mad Scientist, you are cast in the role of Sara Goodwin, daughter of the famous Doctor Goodwin who has invented a miracle cure for many diseases in his Pontoon Laboratories. In the original title, an explosion destroyed part of the Lab and the Government promised to fund the repairs. However following numerous accidents and the sighting of ghostly creatures during the restoration work, the Government withdrew its support and plans are put in place to demolish the Lab which brings us to the start of Greed: Old Enemies Return.
In your role of Sara Goodwin, and assisted by a detective, you set out to discover what has been going on at the Lab. Aided by the optional tutorial, you are introduced to the various mouse cursors indicating when specific actions are possible, such as examining areas and picking up objects, you begin your adventure. Running across the bottom of the screen are the various tools available to you. Taking up a central position is an inventory which can be locked so that it is always visible or left to disappear when not required. Items in the inventory that are accompanied by s plus sign will need to be combined with another object before they can be put to some use,
To the left of the inventory is the game’s main menu and a journal that automatically records your findings and background information. Initially the Hint feature will be the sole occupier on the right of the inventory. However it will be joined by a map once it has been found. The map is the type of tool that will transport you between locations.
An outbreak of sparkles will indicate the presence of a Hidden Object scene. Base on the familiar cluttered scene aspect, these Hidden Object scenes use different formats when displaying the items to be found. Sometimes you will be given a list of 12 different text items that you will need to locate. On other occasions you could be asked to locate a specific number of one particular type of object. As well as text lists of items, some times silhouettes are used to represent objects in the current scene. You will be rewarded with one or two of the located items at the successful conclusion of each Hidden Object scene.
From time to time you will be faced by a mini-game in the form of a puzzle. Generally these mini-games are used to either grant access to a new area or reveal an item that will be required to fulfil a particular task at some later point in the game. Various types of mini-games make an appearance and, in most cases, you should not be tempted to make use of the Skip option which becomes available after a suitable delay.
As mentioned earlier, at various points during the game you will encounter other characters who will offer some dialogue. This dialogue will be delivered by a voice actor and also displayed in text format. You will also be shown a large image of the character delivering the dialogue. There were some occasions when the voice actors appeared to show little interest in their dialogue.
With most of the game taking place within the environment of the damaged Lab, which was under the threat of further demolishing, the various scenes are rather dull and uninspiring while the different characters tend to be static and wooden in appearance. Greed: Old Enemies Return is the type of game that I found easy from which to take a break and often felt no urging for a quick return. I downloaded my copy of the game from Gamehouse.com where it is available priced at $9.99. Game requirements call for a 1.5GHz processor with 512MB of RAM running Windows 7 and later.
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