So you're lost in some mysterious remnants of an ancient civilization, mosquitoes are supping on you while some zen silent type is offering no free help on where to go from here? That leaves you with no other option than to fire up those neurons and earn your own way out of these jungle encased Ruins, the latest offering from 58Works showing just how engaging, logical and very fun a mobile escape game can be.
You begin your expedition in a jungle outside a strange structure and peppered with archaeological enigmas. Using your finger to point and click, following the arrows at the sides and bottom of the screen to turn or back up, tap around the scenery to find purposeful objects and telling clues. Things you can pick up will land in your inventory when you touch them. Once there, if you want to utilize or get a better view of your new acquisition, you can tap once to highlight it then select either the area on screen where you want to use it or the magnifying glass. In this way, make your way through each area looking for a means of escape.
As you solve puzzles, you'll move deeper into the ruins until you at last uncover the great secrets long shrouded in this verdant environment. While there is no text to guide you and rather pithy instructions on how to play, the design is intuitive enough to not leave you guessing for very long. Most the tasks before you are clear and not too difficult to think your way through. 58Works also bucks the current trend of simple room-by-room puzzles and has made Ruins feel more adventuresome and cohesive, with a nice rewarding reveal at the end. So settle that dusty leather fedora on your head, keep a hand casually over that bullwhip at your hip, and venture through a brainy gauntlet with Ruins.
NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the iPad 2. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.