This game is one that I feel was ahead of its time, as far as IHOG's go. It was brought to us by the people who brought us Dying for Daylight
, the Women's Murder Club
series, Classic Adventures: The Great Gatsby
, and the Dream Day
series (among others).
Options include separate sliders for SFX/Voice, Environment, and Music, and says Windowed mode is not available - because of my desktop resolution, perhaps? It might be available to those with a non-1024x768 setting.
The story is definitely interesting, and all cut scenes are voiced-over.
There is no difficulty setting, but the devs make up for this in a couple of ways:
First, the HINT button is refillable, but it takes two minutes to fill (use it wisely!) When you use a hint during the adventure portion of the game, you will have multiple topics to choose from, depending on what your current objectives are. You can choose one of the objectives from the list, and it will tell you what you need to do, or you can click 'No thanks', and close the hint function.
Second is that you do not have a journal to track the story or important tidbits. There is a mini-game where you have to remember 10 things that are scattered across two screens, so you're going to need to write some things down! The minis are mostly logic games, but you also have potion-making to do. Gather ingredients, then follow instructions in a poem (of sorts) to create the potion.
This brings us to the voodoo portion of the game. A lot of people are upset by the idea of dark magic, etc, and I'm no exception. The first Princess Isabella was upsetting for me, for this very reason (which I explained in my review of that game.) I'm going to try to explain this without spoiling anything, plot-wise, but I will still put it in white type, just in case you really don't want to know.
*Spoiler - highlight to read
*There are no insects or animal parts used in the potions that we make, nor do we kill any living creature. Blood is required in one of the recipes, but we get that from a cursed object.
The potions that WE make are made with good intentions. ie. removing curses, etc. The main character of the story is no saint, however, so be prepared for that.
Suffice to say that the developers walked a fine line in this game, telling a dark story without upsetting the player by making them feel like THEY are the ones doing the deeds. Delphine LaLaurie is involved in the story, though not the main character (whew~!)
You will need to use a variety of plants in the potions, and since you don't necessarily know what monkshood looks like, for example, you have a book to identify plants. This can be accessed at any time by clicking on the small book next to your hint button.
You also have a spell book that will show you what ingredients you will need for your spell(s), as well as track which ones you have found.
The hidden object scenes vary from very messy to pretty, depending on where you are in the game. You will sometimes have to use an inventory item you find early in the game during a HOG scene - something I've not seen in any other IHOG. Yes, interaction during these scenes, but never with something that was already
in your inventory! The list of items to find is completely random, so when you revisit scenes, you may need to find some items you found there previously.
The graphics are dark and eerie, but with splashes of color that really make them beautiful, the gameplay is very enjoyable, even by today's standards, and the story well-told. I'm about 2/3 through the game on my second time through (the first time being when it first came out), and am having fun rediscovering it. I definitely recommend this game