The Hidden Mystery Collectives: PuppetShow 1 & 2 PC CD
Published by: Focus Multimedia
Developed by: ERS Game Studios
If, like me, you are a fan of hidden object games and haven't played any of the PuppetShow titles then this compilation pack represents a bargain. With both PuppetShow: Mystery of Joyville and PuppetShow 2: Souls of the Innocent being included in this compilation, you're going to get your money’s worth. That said, neither game lasts that long so it certainly makes sense that both are being offered in the same package.
In Mystery of Joyville you'll play as a detective who is investigating the disappearance of a young boy named Simon in the town of Joyville. As it happens, Simon isn't the only one to have disappeared and something decidedly odd is happening in the town and it points to the puppet master and his puppet theatre. In Souls of the Innocent you'll once again play as a detective and it seems that once again the puppet master is responsible for the evil doings in this town. This time you're investigating a small town where the souls of children and adults have been disappearing. The afflicted have been plunged into a deep sleep with no apparent way of waking them up.
In both games it's up to you to investigate various locations, indicated by sparkles, and collect items that appear on your list. You'll also notice there are quite a few areas within a location (your cursor will change when you move it over these areas) that can be investigated too and these can yield important clues and items to assist you. Some of the items that you'll find will remain in your inventory so that you can use them later in the game to help you solve puzzles. You'll also encounter mini-games that you must solve in order to open locked doors. These can be skipped after you've been playing them for sixty seconds or more however.
Both games play out in a similar fashion and both are enjoyable hidden object games with interesting storylines to help keep you interested. In Souls of the Innocent you have the option of playing in Regular or Expert mode. In Regular mode, skip and hint buttons recharge quicker and active areas are highlighted with sparkles. In Expert mode skip and hint buttons take longer to recharge and you won't benefit from sparkles to highlight active areas.
Both games can be played in full screen or windowed mode and both run at a screen resolution of 1024x768. The presentation of both games is on a par with most hidden object games and as with most games in this genre the system requirements are ridiculously low. The games are fine for deaf gamers with all dialogue and information being displayed in text. You'll get to read the dialogue at your own pace too, as you have to click to move the dialogue forward.
The Hidden Mystery Collectives: PuppetShow 1 & 2 represents a great bargain for hidden object game fans who don't own either of the PuppetShow titles. Both are enjoyable hidden object games with interesting storylines and in terms of the gameplay it's pretty much what you'd expect from the genre. Neither game will last that long however and it's possible to finish either game in just a few hours of play. Still this isn't a problem with both games being included in the package.