We all have our own version of paradise, don't we? For some, it's a mai tai in one hand, a good book in another, and sun-warmed sand at our feet. But for a certain JIG subset, it's a bit different: a cold half-drank mochachino on the desk, the happy hum of a computer in front of us and another lovely game from Robamimi. Aw, yes! The Seeds of Eden is a welcome sight to all us devoted escape game fans as well as to anyone looking for a brief diversion from the mundane world.
After selecting your preferred language (Japanese or English), click start and you'll be transported to a vine-shrouded courtyard garden. It's pretty, but what you really want is to see what's beyond those high stucco walls. To do that, uncover the clues needed to solve a short series of puzzles and find the key to that forbidding metal door. Your pointer will change when an obtainable object or interactive area is within clicking range, but you should also rely on your eyes to seek out interesting spots and useful information. The interface is very intuitive, making finding your way around and utilizing objects quite easy. Robamimi continues to be user-friendly with a "Hint" and "Save" button in case you ever feel stumped.
As you explore this tiny garden, the mood and setting elicit a sense of Hermit Rabi and Wonder Fountain but on a smaller scale. Depending on your experience with playing this sort of game, your stay in this miniature Eden can be disappointingly brief, especially considering that none of the puzzles require stretches of logic or lateral inferences. Nevertheless, it's always a joy to play a Robamimi creation: they're always infused with a bit of indescribable magic that takes you away from the moment, even if only temporarily. The magical allure of The Seeds of Eden is in its slightly surreal surroundings and pixie-like melody which coax your imagination while you unhurriedly unravel the riddles set before you. The teasing scene at the end might tempt you to daydream a bit more, as well. Proust is known for his quip, "The only paradise is a paradise lost." Yet, in this case, it's an Eden escaped!
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