Best of 2011 (Top 5):
Drawn has returned. The third game in the series, Drawn: Trail of Shadows, dares to outdo its predecessors in what simply must be the most enchanting hidden object adventure game to date. The visuals have improved (if you can believe it!), the storytelling is even more intriguing, and the puzzles are as rich as before. Good hidden object games are hard to come by, so when you find a game this great, you'd best dive right in.
Remember Titus? Sure you do, he's that dummy who got himself trapped in a magic book his malevolent uncle left lying around. Then he called on you to help free a library from an evil genie who was ruining the classic stories contained within. It's been a few years, but Titus is back in the latest (and greatest) installment of the Azada series of adventure/hidden object hybrids, Azada in Libro. That darned evil uncle is trying to take over the magical land of Azada once again, and this time it's personal!
Ready for an adventure game that will engladden you with every puzzle? Or maybe you're in the mood for a little princess saving, dragon slaying, ghost-costume-wearing fun? Either way, The Fool has got you covered. And then some! The Fool is a perfect example of what a casual adventure game should be: smart, funny, filled with puzzles, and just the right number of diversions to keep things from going too silent. All wrapped in a deliciously tongue-in-cheek fantasy setting.
Charles and his twisted son Victor are back in Mystery Case Files: Escape from Ravenhearst, the third and final (?) installment of the popular Ravenhearst adventures. Replacing the standard hidden object scenes with morphing objects, this is not your usual hidden object adventure hybrid. The mini-games are fun and challenging, and best of all skippable if they turn out to be not your cup of tea. There is a bit of back-and-forth backtracking, although not nearly as much in Return to Ravenhearst as Escape from Ravenhearst is divided up into more manageable sections. If dark and twisted with a side of gorgeous is your cup of tea, then this is definitely the game for you!
Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water is virtually a pure point-and-click adventure experience of the old Myst school of gameplay, with some minor hidden object elements mixed in. Book of Water picks up where Book of Air left off, with the heroine Lyra making her way back home to the land of Wish after her adventures with the Clockmaker. Stunning to look at, a joy to listen to (the soundtrack is lovely as always), challenging, entertaining, and downright fun, Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water is a worthy successor to the previous games in the series, while setting the stage for the (hopefully) big wrap up that is to come.