Casual adventure games are gaining ground as titles such as Azada and the Dream Chronicles series cut out the complexity and serve up a little lighthearted gaming alongside item-based puzzles. Natalie Brooks - Secrets of Treasure House follows suit in an adventure that uses optional hidden object scenes to earn hints to solve puzzles in the main quest. It's a good blend of genres that, despite its rather short length and occasional grammatical hiccup, holds your attention with an interesting story and varied gameplay.
Kava-what? Is it a Pacific island drink of shamans and storytellers? No, Kavalmaja is the latest game from the brilliant Tonypa. A departure from his usual explorations of the abstract, Kavalmaja is a tile-based, Zelda like exploration game, except you have a wacky, randomly generated name. Unlike Zelda, it strips away combat, re-emphasizing the flow of the maze.
You've been looking for some kind of escape. a vacation to paradise, maybe. but you'd probably just settle for a nap. So, here, you now find yourself sitting in front of this screen once again. But why are you wearing those pale green socks? Welcome to the Tipping Point, a new point-and-click adventure by Dan Russell-Pinson. Now with 3 chapters!
Another casual game that tries its hand at blending genres, Curse of the Pharaoh: Quest for Nefertiti takes two popular game types to ancient Egypt for a fascinating puzzle-adventure experience. The game's main tricks are spot-the-difference scenes along with a few simple hidden object excursions. You'll also unlock minigames and solve adventure-style puzzles using artifacts you find and assemble in dusty old tombs. It's a relatively easy game, making it accessible to a wide range of players, but the real hook is the deliciously mysterious Egyptian setting based on the real-life mystery of Queen Nefertiti's burial.
The PonPon House is an adorable point-and-click adventure from the Japanese game design group, Orange Biscuit. Short and sweet, this one isn't likely to take up much time or energy. However, with the soothing background sounds of a gentle sea combined with elegant scenery, the game is more like a journey through a landscape painting rather than an adventure.
Escape the Museum is an intriguing adventure/hidden object game that reaches into room escape territory for inspiration. You play as Susan Anderson, a museum curator showing her daughter a dinosaur exhibit when a fierce earthquake suddenly rocks the building. Falling debris knocks Susan unconscious, and when she awakens she discovers she's trapped in the room and Caitlin is missing! Find the objects you'll need to fashion an exit, then recover precious museum artifacts as you work your way through the rubble searching for your daughter.
The Eternal Maze continues where the first game left off with a beautiful blend of puzzles, adventure, object finding and Myst-like environments. You play Faye, a mortal woman whose fairy husband has been kidnapped and daughter imprisoned by Lilith, the Queen of Fairies. By solving a series of puzzles you can reach Fidget and awaken Lyra, but the Queen is always one step ahead!
Orbita puts you in control of a cute little guy with a trapezoid-shaped head. Venture around the planet, visit different perilous locations, and solve puzzles to discover the three batteries that power his ship. Yes, it appears that the little guy's spaceship runs on Duracells.
Trapped Part 2: The Dark is the middle installment in a trilogy of puzzle adventure games distinguished by a literary flavor and an unusual perspective. This series has a lot more in common with the old Infocom text adventures than it does with modern point-and-click games. Rather than relying on abstract puzzles and thorough visual investigation, the Trapped games plop you in a mundane environment, lavish you with a huge inventory, and then ask you to be extremely clever.
I am a big fan of point-and-click games and recently I enjoyed playing the escape games from Aztec. Now, as luck would have it, a sequel to the previously reviewed Escape from Octlien has only just been made available. The game is called Dr. Dokkoy and it is just as satisfying as the first game. If you haven't played the other games first, it is recommended that you play them in order.
From GUMP, the creator of Rental House comes another well-produced point-and-click, room escape game. Guest House puts you in a similar situation as most games of its type, and yet once you begin to move about the room and examine the various items and objects that await your puzzle-solving skills you will see that this is no ordinary room escape game.
From Aztec, creator of Escape from Island and Jinja (The Shrine), comes yet another superbly crafted point-and-click adventure game, Escape from Octlien. The sci-fi themed title drops you on a spaceship with very little information on what you're supposed to do. Explore the environment, collect items, and try and make your way through this lengthy and challenging game.
Trapped is a series of 5 adventure puzzle, maze games that start with a minute long "training level" and progresses to 30 minute long (if you play it ten times and memorize the maze) high quality casual gameplay experiences. You are a lonely little arrow, trapped, as the title suggests, in a maze full of simply-shaped enemies set on keeping you there for eternity. Escape if you can.
Your plane goes down on a mysterious and seemingly deserted island somewhere off the radar charts, and it is up to you to find a way to 'Escape from Island' using only the resources available to you. Thought-provoking puzzles and a well-illustrated environment together create an atmosphere ripe for adventure and captivating gameplay.
Dream Chronicles is a sensual delight, an intellectual challenge, and a very engaging twist on adventure, seek-and-find and puzzle games. It's been compared to Myst and Uru, and whilst it's certainly not as demanding as those mainstream titles, I found Dream Chronicles even more enjoyable.
DayMare Town is a strange and oddly deserted town that gives the unsettling feeling that eyes are peering from around corners. It is drab and dreary, not a very pleasant place to be. But now you're stuck, and you'll do anything you can to leave.
Azada combines elements from a number of casual genres to create a game that's one of the most unique titles I've played in months. Take a point-and-click game such as Myst, then combine it with item hunting from Mystery Case Files and throw in a dash of short puzzles just for fun. Everything is so elegantly combined that you can't help but keep playing, both to uncover the rest of the story and to experience more puzzles.
A missile is launched and it is up to you to solve the mysteries and rituals of The Shrine and save the world. In this amazing and well-produced point-and-click adventure by Aztec, you will encounter lots of items to find, hidden rooms, and various contraptions to activate and control. Cut scene animations reward you at various stages along the way.
Just when you thought you had seen the last of the Submachines for a while, Mateusz Skutnik comes around full circle and delivers another installment in one of the best point-and-click room escape game series on the Web. Submachine: Future Loop Foundation features music from a band of the same name (Future Loop Foundation) and it sets the mood very nicely for another enjoyable adventure.
Enter the Rental House and note the viridian green walls. This Japanese-made adventure offers a quality game play experience packed with puzzles that will force you to think logically. It is a straight forward game of its genre with only a couple of minor pixel hunts involved. Easy enough to complete on ones own, and yet challenging to give you about an hour's worth of fun.
On from Eyezmaze just released a brand new game he made to celebrate the birth of a friend's baby, Galves Adventure. In this charming little point-and-click, adventure puzzle game, help baby Galves make it through to where the sleeping boss lion lay. Click on various items in the right sequence and at the appropriate times to advance the little baby up to the top, at which point a boss battle will commence.
On of Eyezmaze continues to impress and amaze us with his game development skills, and Dwarf Complete is no exception. Perhaps his most ambitious project to date, the game was commissioned for the online RPG, Lineage II, and it even features dwarves from that game. Dwarf Complete is an amazingly good adventure puzzle game with quality, presentation and gameplay that all helped push this title to the top of the Best of 2007.
In Gateway 2 you again guide a robot, through a dream-like setting, in order to solve numerous and varied mini-puzzles for a seemingly unknown purpose (though a purpose there is, as you soon discover). Using well-placed musical cues and subtle environmental sound the author has created a virtual world that draws you in from the moment you launch the game. The setting and aesthetics are so enticing and mysterious, it doesn't matter at first that you don't know what your ultimate goal is (or indeed if you have one).
Sprout is a creative and original puzzle adventure game created for our second Casual Gameplay Design Competition. From the moment you lay eyes on it you know it's something special. The unique artwork for a Flash game has a paper-cut appearance that lends a storybook atmosphere to the game. This environment perfectly suits the role you play as a young seedling trying to find its way home. Sprout has everything we love to see in a Flash game: originality, a simple design, and a beautiful presentation.
Hewitt is a top-notch online adventure game that two developers, Casper Smith and C. Gianelloni, spent over a year creating. Their hard work is apparent: Hewitt looks and plays great and is a surprisingly long game. Aside from some fairly quirky puzzle elements Hewitt provides a solid experience for any adventure/point-and-click fan.
The Roomz is a point-and-click game with similarities to online riddle games along the lines of God Tower and Ouverture Facile. One key difference is that The Roomz has a slight adventure flavor to it and, as a result, is more interactive. Each room has a locked door and keypad. You must use clues inside the room to discover the password to get out. Move objects and use the magnifying glass to peer at the scenery in detail.
Isn't it such a turn-off when a game takes itself too seriously? Well, you won't have to worry about that when you play Chilly Beach Beach Hunt from the guys at ilaugh.com, the self-proclaimed "second sweetest comedy portal on earth."
Sam & Max - Culture Shock is the first installment in a series of episodic adventure games based on the popular comic book characters. The downloadable episodes are available to PC users via Telltale Games or through GameTap. Set in New York City and starring the anthropomorphic dog Sam and his hyperactive rabbit partner Max, the pair of freelance police investigate crimes in the name of, well, boredom. There's no shortage of wit in this game and you can expect to laugh on more than one occasion.
Eight Days is the latest point-and-click adventure from that fabulous French duo, Anode & Cathode. The 4-part episodic game is scheduled to "go live" today (October 19th) at 10:30PM GMT. And judging from their past successes with The Museum, The Casino, and L'expresso Empoisonné, we are likely in store for another excellent adventure.
Out 2: Out of File is the sequel to the room escape game Out File #01 by Isomura Kai of Tonakai Interactive. The story picks up after escaping the room in the first game and walking through a long winding cave. Now you find yourself in an underground complex filled with computers and machinery with no way to make it to the surface.
Submachine Zero: Ancient Adventure is a spectacularly detailed Flash point-and-click puzzle game from one of the leading designers of the genre, Mateusz Skutnik. This competition entry also placed within a tight group of puzzles that resembled a photo-finish at the horse races. In other words, it was difficult to pass this entry by as a prize winner.
Dona Room 2 is the second room escape game from Japanese flash designer Noaki Nakashima. The game is every bit as quirky and amusing as the original Dona Room and offers more great point-and-click gameplay. The entire game takes place in your kitchen where a note from your mother says you must find a snack before you can leave. Unfortunately the potato chips and cake are locked away, so you must find items and solve puzzles in order to get to them. The game has a little Japanese text but is completely playable without knowledge of the language.
Submachine 3 is a point-and-click game of exploration and puzzle solving created by Mateusz Skutnik. As the intro so cleverly notes, there are no items to collect, no diary to keep, no trash bin to check, and no spoon to, er, bend. It's just you, the machine, and an infinite metallic world to explore one screen at a time.
A sequel to Mateusz Skutnik's excellent point-and-click adventure series, Submachine 2 will have you mapping out tunnels as you explore the dark recesses of this classic-style Flash game. The Submachine series is among the best on the Web, so if you love first-person adventures, ala Myst, don't miss this one.
Pricilla Gone Missing is a Flash point-and-click adventure from Johan Törnkvist, a talented design and technology student at Hyper Island in Kariskrona, Sweden. The game begins with the player learning of the disappearance of Pricilla (Aunt "Prissy") and that warrants an investigation. From there a charming little adventure unfolds in which the player must look for items and clues to progress through the story.
Escape to Obion is a five-part series of short point-and-click Flash games by Matt Slaybaugh of SkepticTank.net. The games are strongly reminiscent of old-style adventure games such as Myst, complete with the mysterious atmosphere, fiendish puzzles, and an absolutely gripping sense of exploration.
As an unnamed stick figure stuck in a prison cell, you've got to break out of a remarkably dangerous dungeon armed with nothing more than your reflexes, wits and patience. The rapid fire pace of the rooms in Dungeon Escape can be surprisingly tense, and the depth in certain areas goes beyond any interactive movie I've seen before.
This Java applet game impressed me with the old-school charm of its scrolling tile-based worlds, its quirky characters and dialog, and its addictive gameplay. And yet the moment the game begins you realize that this is no ordinary Web game. Immediately you are teleporting back to the glory days of the SNES, and from there your task is to seek out the one last sprout, which is the one item you need to open the final gate.
If you managed to escape the Archipelago, you may have felt a sense of relief watching the volcanic islands dwindle as you floated away. Well, you may not want to breathe easy just yet, as creator Jonathan May has recently made the sequel, Return to the Archipelago, available to the general public.
This second game of the Samorost series lives up to the lofty expectations set by the first. It is every bit a sequel that includes all of the best qualities that made the first game remarkable, and then adds more environments, more puzzles, and more sound and music. The result is a game that continues the reputation set by the first as being one of the finest, compelling interactive experiences available on the Web today. It is altogether an exceptional work of interactive art.
Kafkamesto is an unusual and dark interactive narrative that will at first seem familiar to those acquainted with point-and-click adventures, but beware the futility in store. The over-arching narrative seems to be as much a statement about Kafka's own life as it is the themes he often wrote about.
One more game to leave you with to sweat it out over the weekend. Mark Arenz over at Ridiculopathy.com, author of the previously reviewed Swinger game, has just released his latest creation and it's a unique combination of point-and-click puzzles with arcade mini-games thrown in for good measure.
Dr. Stanley's House was created by James Li and is a point-and-click adventure game. It has a mysterious plot with some twists and turns that is very creepy at times. The lush colored graphics provide a striking contrast to the moody atmospheric soundtrack, with several cut scenes that develop the story as you play.
Anode and Cathode, that very talented French duo responsible for many hours lost inside their previous point-and-click adventures, have done it again. The Casino is the latest of their efforts to put your clicky finger to the test. And while I found this one to be just slightly disorienting as compared to their previous efforts, the quality of workmanship appears to have been left intact.
Featuring original and commercial-quality graphics, animation and sound, Mink of 3wish.com has created these cute, point-and-click, cartoon puzzles in Flash. Each episode is rather short in length—just right for some lunchtime fun or a coffee break—and all of them contain humorous and inventive situations and clever puzzles to solve.
One-half interactive story and one-half game, Survivoo is a quirky Japanese Flash piece that is charming, cute, and bizarre. Although all the text in the game is Japanese, that doesn't spoil the fun this short little adventure has to offer. Most of the animation speaks for itself. It tells the tale of a little Frenchman who is swept away to a far away land of peculiar beasts that make very strange noises.
You don't know where you are, and you don't know what you're doing there. You just know you have to get out. Such is the scenario that The Doors drops you into when this excellent point-and-click adventure game begins. Truly one of the best of its kind.
From the creator of Treasure Box—an engaging and clever interactive Flash puzzle that showcases the author's artistic talents—comes another such piece with a clearer objective than its predecessor. It is an imaginative work of art filled with sights and sounds that include various puzzles to solve. The objective is to find all 5 stars and then place them onto the wheel of fortune.
Kharon4a is a dark and gritty, point-and-click Flash adventure that will challenge the best puzzle fanatics out there. Sporting an unusual interface and enough biotech gadgetry and terminology to open your own laboratory, Kharon4a is a moody sophisticated game to say the least.
A storm at sea has left you shipwrecked on a strange group of islands filled with mysterious gadgets and devices. Use your wits to solve the puzzles and escape it if you can. Archipelago is a point-and-click first-person puzzle adventure created in Flash by the amazing puzzle master himself, Jon May.
The awe-inspiring Flash graphics of Yenz are combined into a creative and original point-and-click adventure that has you solving the mystery of the Secret Garden. You see, the garden is in great danger and it's up to you to solve the mystery and save it, if possible. There are several easy puzzles to solve and several screens of unusual yet fantastic and beautiful art to enjoy while doing so.
The latest of the point-and-click puzzle adventures to pop onto the Flash game scene is a short little story about a girl who has lost her head... literally. With gameplay very similar to that of Samarost, this game is charming and very enjoyable, the only downside is that it is over way too soon.
Another game from Japan, this adventure game is a bit of a mystery but looks promising in that it appears to be another one of those clicky puzzles like Viridian Room and like Samorost, and yet with a bit more action involved. All the text is in Japanese, so best of luck brave adventurer!