(*contains possible spoilers*
Options include separate sliders for music and sound effects, custom cursor, full-screen and letterbox.
There is timed and relaxed play available, and HINTS
are refillable. *WARNING*
Even in relaxed mode, there is a timed mini-game: Match the ink blots. The timer is impossibly fast, and the only way I was able to do the game was to pause the game as soon as the ink blots showed, then look to see if it matched any of the ink blots on the edges of the screen. There is NO SKIP BUTTON, but you can use HINTS during the mini-games, so I think that you would be able to complete the ink blots by using the hints (eventually). This mini came up during the demo, so be sure to try the game before buying to be sure that you can complete the game.
The basic gist of Muse
is that we - along with our guide, Hope - are trying to inspire artists by uncluttering their minds to help their creativity flow. We do this by removing unnecessary ideas (find objects by list), fixing mismatched ideas (spot-the-differences), finding multiple items, and sometimes placing items back in the scene where they belong (would've liked to see more of this). There are puzzles to do such as shredded pictures, matching images,
letter-deciphering (letters have been replaced with symbols - find the words), etc.
This is a game that held a lot of promise.
I was enamored with the quirkiness of the hand-drawn graphics and jumping from one artist's mind to another and experiencing different art styles in each artist's mind.
We begin with the Spooky Mind
, which is very reminiscent of Drawn and the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas. Oooo, loved it! (See image #2 in the first post)
Next we jump to the Bunny World
, a very "cute" world of anime-esque figures and Japanese culture. (See image #3 in the first post)
Then we move on to Fairy Tale Land
, which is bright and colorful and (of course) depicting different fairy tales (See image #1 in the first post)
Here the game seems to ruin its own premise by trapping us in Fairy Tale Land, where seem doomed to stay in the same art style forever. I do enjoy the artwork in all three styles, but the novelty quickly faded away as I did HOG scene after HOG scene, with no end of fairy tales in sight.
My saving grace was that it was suggested that the game might end soon after the demo and that I might want to look for a walkthrough. Happily, I not only found one, but discovered that the game does
eventually change back to Bunny Land, then on to Spooky Land again... and the game is much longer than I thought it would be.
In all, I count almost 30 hidden object scenes, and this does not count spot-the-differences, find-x-number of objects, replace-the-object scenes or puzzles.
Now, on to game play!
Your co-pilot, Hope, is... a teenager. How else to describe her? She's fun, upbeat and full of rebellious spirit.
Our misclick penalty
comes in the form of comments from our game nemesis who says things like, "You don't think you can just click your way out of this, do you?"
Items are craftily and almost too
well-hidden, but there are no junk piles or teeny items to find. Scenes may have dark areas (depends on the scene), and every now and then the bad guy obscures the light and we have to use a special lens to be able to see.
As mentioned, there is a refillable hint button, but it only circles the general area where the object is hidden.
The same music loops throughout the game, and Hope's voice-over can be wearing, so you might end up needing to adjust (or turn off) the voice and/or the music. The music and voices/story will especially appeal to the younger crowd - I know that my eldest will think it's great.
Despite the many flaws I've mentioned, I am really enjoying this game. The artwork is lovely, and somehow the game has "drawn" me in
This game is not about the adventure or the story, but the enjoyment of finding objects in the hand-drawn scenes. I recommend going in to this game with an open mind, you'll have a lot more fun