Escape from the Cake Shop
Choko-Chai's three cats have unwittingly found themselves in a variety of predicaments—bound for the open sea on a Passenger Ship, virtually catnapped by Forty Thieves, and facing lupine menace as Little Red Riding Hoods—yet these kitties do more than yowl discordantly and leave fur clusters on your clothes. They are rather resourceful (with a smidgen of assistance from you) and happen to love tasty treats, so of course they're purrfect heroes when the baker's apprentice is locked inside the cake shop and can't find the door key. Join the three cats to the rescue! Gather useful items, solve puzzles, and decipher codes in order to Escape from the Cake Shop!
The complete premise unfolds after you choose English or Japanese to begin the game. If you wish, you can skip the intro story, but then you'd miss out on the feline antics as well as half the fun of playing. Once inside the cake shop, follow the arrows at the edges of the scene to turn right or left or, where pertinent, back-up. Pick-up items with a click and examine them with the "About Item" button. Navigation is rather clunky and this tends to add to the frustration when you're looking for a clue that seems just out of reach. The changing cursor hardly helps in this case because there are a couple spots that are arbitrarily unreachable unless you approach them from a certain angle.
Thankfully, after a wee challenge in finding all necessary clue-solving components, working out the puzzles is a straight-forward endeavor. The puzzles themselves are somewhat unimaginative, yet there's such imaginative and amusing ways to uncover the clues. To liven things up, there's even a few instances when, by clicking on the cat in bottom left corner, the goofy gang bursts onto the scene to help out. So a bit of awkwardness in navigation and tasks completion is only a minor damper; it's hard to not get a kick out of the whimsical blend of photo-quality and cartoon graphics, multiple escaping layers and a zingy mission—especially when your cohorts are so haplessly comical. There's even two endings to find, guaranteeing even more entertainment courtesy of a trio of lovably charismatic cats.