Mystery P.I. - The New York Fortune PC CD
Published by: Focus Multimedia
Developed by: SpinTop Games
Over the last few years there has been a rise in what’s horribly termed “casual gaming”. Puzzle games have been the most popular in this category and one of the most popular puzzles games types has been the hidden object game. The attraction of such games is easy to understand. You simply have a list of objects that you need to find in a particular scene. The twist is that many of the objects are not easy to find and blend in with the background in a rather sneaky fashion at times. Mystery P.I. – The New York Fortune doesn’t do anything to differentiate itself from any of the other games in the series but it will be appreciated by all who enjoy the genre.
The story goes that the family of a billionaire needs your help to find his vast fortune and in return they are promising you a $25, 000,000 reward. You have seventeen hours to find all of the clues which happen to be scattered all around New York City. You’ll have to find twenty-five clues and to find each clue you’ll have to complete a level. A level is made up of several locations with each location offering ten items to find and you’ll need to find the bulk of the items in a level (for instance you may be asked to find 47 out of a possible 50) before you can obtain the clue. To claim the clue all you have to do is solve one of five different puzzles which can range from a jigsaw puzzle to a word search.
When you first visit a location, and you’ll be visiting the same locations numerous times during the course of the game, you’ll have the opportunity to find both a key and an apple (in addition to the list of items). In total there are 25 of each and should you find them all you’ll unlock two extra game modes. These modes are called Ultimate Seek & Find and Spot the Differences and both are unlimited which means they’re great for when you’ve finished the main game.
Mystery P.I. The New York Fortune pretty much follows the pattern of the other Mystery P.I. games and if you’re a fan of those, you’ll appreciate what the game has to offer. I do have some issues with the game which are probably more of a gripe with the series as a whole. When faced with a new location I like to take a moment or two to find as many items as I can in order to accrue a speed bonus when clicking on items in quick succession. Unfortunately the game seems to think I’m stuck and readily suggests taking a hint. This wouldn’t be a problem if it only did this for the first few locations but it does it every single time you start a new search and it soon becomes really irritating. It’s also unfortunate that you’re visiting the same locations over and over again during the course of the main game. This serves to make the game feel far more repetitious than it should. It also doesn’t help that you seem to be finding the same things during the course of the game. A greater range of objects to find would certainly have been appreciated. It’s also worth noting that the game is aimed at a North American audience so a megaphone will be called a bullhorn and a hairpin will be called a bobby pin. These names won’t cause too many problems but if you’re not from North America there will be times when you’re not quite sure what you have to search for.
In regards to the game’s presentation, The New York Fortune is a pretty standard affair. With the game being based in New York you’ll see some delightful locations such as Coney Island, Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge and Times Square. None of the visuals in the game are particularly impressive but they are certainly good enough for a game of this type. In addition the game is also very light in its system requirements. With the bare minimum requirements being 350MHz CPU and 256MB RAM it’s a sure bet that most PC’s out there will run the game fine. Due to the nature of the game it’s also an experience that doesn’t present any problems for deaf gamers. All of the information is provided visually and what dialogue and instructions there are, are all shown in text.
As far as Hidden Object games go, the Mystery P.I. Series is one of the best. Mystery P.I. – The New York Adventure doesn’t shake up the series’ popular formula in any drastic fashion and is exactly what you would expect from a Mystery P.I. game. Priced at £9.99 (it can be found for much less if you look around online) it’s certainly value for money and will please any fan of the genre. Yes there are some aspects of the game that could have been better but on the whole this is a fine addition to the Mystery P.I. series.