I’ve never played a hidden object game before, and my enjoyment of puzzles in games has been limited to games like Zelda. So, I was coming into Eventide Slavic Fable, a hidden object adventure game by The House of Fables and published by Artifex Mundi, without knowing what to expect. It turns out; I may have been missing some pretty interesting games.
In Eventide Slavic Fable, you play as Dr. Mary Gilbert, a famous botanist, who gets an invitation from her grandmother to save an endangered plant. However, as she arrives she is attacked by a mysterious creature, and finds out her grandmother has been kidnapped. You have to, then, befriend and work together with the Slavic creatures of the area, while exploring solving puzzles throughout the game.
The game consists of 6 chapters, and is the perfect length. It doesn’t overstay its welcome, but isn’t too short for the price either. The game is essentially a series of puzzles that are interlocked by the items that you get as a result. You find one object; it allows you to do one puzzle, which grants you another object, which allows you to do the next. This might sound tedious, but it is surprisingly engaging and fun to explore the world, usually. There were only a few moments where I began to get frustrated because I didn’t quite understand what I was looking at, but those didn’t last very long. The game also features, on easier difficulties, a hint system that you can use if you feel too stuck. If you are on the wrong screen, it’ll point you in the direction of the correct one. If you are on the right screen, it’ll point to what you need to inspect. It’s a nice mechanic that’s helpful if you really need, but can be completely ignored if you like.
The soundtrack is rather limited, but this is forgivable for two reasons: it is absolutely beautiful, and the game isn’t that long to begin with. The tracks slowly change as you move to new areas. There wasn’t a song in the game that I didn’t stop and listen to for a moment, just in awe. Overall, the soundtrack brings out the great atmosphere of the game. The sound effects are also quite nice, and everything seemed to work well. The voice acting isn’t perfect, but overall it’s actually pretty solid work. Nothing stood out as irritating, and it got the job done.
The art is similarly fantastic. It is gorgeous 2D art that is incredibly well drawn and atmospheric. The characters and scenes have an interesting fantasy style to them, and it works great with the Slavic themes. Nearly everything is recognizable and understandable, too. There were a couple of instances, however, where I didn’t understand what I was seeing. But, It was very minor.
Overall, Eventide Slavic Fable is a very well-done game. It absolutely nails the atmosphere, the exploration is fun and engaging, and it was easy for me to pick up and play without any experience with these types of games. There were a few moments where I needed hints to figure out exactly what I needed to do, because it wasn’t obvious what I was looking at. However, the experience was quite enjoyable in the end.
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