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#1132260 - 11/18/17 01:56 AM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Originally Posted By: Jenny100
I haven't played it. From what you say, it sounds like I don't want to either.


Not if you want to risk having to play it 4 times! The first time the hammer disappeared from my inventory after only a couple of uses. I didn't realize I still needed it, so I continued to play until I could play no more. Thankfully, the game has its own strategy guide, even though it is only a SE game - they didn't even make a CE for it. I say "thankfully" because there doesn't seem to be any walkthroughs on the game online! Anyway, it was because of that strategy guide that I realized the hammer had disappeared "prematurely," so to speak. So I started the game from the beginning. But shortly after I did, it crashed; and when I tried to get back in, I was told my profile had been corrupted and that I would have to create a new one. Ughh. So I started yet again and, as I recall, there was one more problem and it was finally in the fourth try that I was able to finish it. I should note that I recently tried that game again and yet another problem occurred. I was at the very end of the game, but I didn't have the item necessary to finish it. So, back to the game's strategy game again, only to find that a HO scene had never appeared! I did not bother to try again this time.

I should note, however, that I played it in whatever the hardest mode was. My brother, who rarely plays games, plays them only in Casual mode. [As he puts it, he plays to enjoy, not to get stressed. LOL] If I remember correctly, he didn't have as many problems, probably none at all. Perhaps the problems occur when you play out of the game's own intended sequence, which is not possible of course when you are playing with no hints or sparkles, etc., to guide you where to go next. Do let me know if you ever play that game though. As I just indicated, there might be no such bugs in Casual mode. And it really was kind of a nice game, if it just weren't for those bugs...

Quote:
They might as well have gotten Dr. Sbaitso to do it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sV3pYZZ2jEw


Checked out the link. Pretty funny! Although I think even good ol' Sbaitso was speaking more slowly than the guy reading the Raven poem! LOL laugh


Quote:
I usually search reviews of the CE at Big Fish for the word "Bonus" and see if anyone mentions whether the main game is complete or not. Of course I have to click the "Show More" button for every single review on the page before searching. But for many games there is at least one reviewer who actually finished the game before reviewing, and can say whether the main game was complete.


I know that a lot of players like to read the review and/or try the demo before getting a game. I don't though. I just read the description to decide what to buy. Besides, as I said at the beginning of the thread, my brother tends to buy almost all of my games anyway, while I get TV/movie DVDs for him. So it's only when a problem occurs that I turn, not to review, but a forum, if any. smile

Quote:
Usually you can check YouTube. Of course watching someone else play a casual game isn't usually that interesting.


No, it's definitely not interesting. But then, as I said, I usually get my games as gifts. There are others that my brother and I choose together, the ones I get from Big Fish. But, again, we focus on the game's description than the reviews. You see, we often note that many people don't like what we like, and vice versa. So reviews would not be helpful anyway. smile

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#1132273 - 11/18/17 08:43 AM Re: Lost Chronicles of Zerzura [Re: Jenny100]
8dognight Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 07/21/05
Posts: 495
Loc: deep south
Zurreen, I'm reading some of your reviews right now. In the one for Hide and Secret: Lost World, you said, "In short, this game is very little like the first three Hide and Secret games that attracted so many fans (which might well be why they didn't make another one!)."

Could you explain how that success led to changing the formula for the worse? I can sort of see it if the final analysis was that people were replaying instead of buying new ones; however, that doesn't seem quite right because continuing the winning format in future games would have guaranteed more purchases.

Edited to Add: I am reading your reviews with great interest and have already marked one as helpful.

I have another question. How do I read game credits to find out who is the main creative force behind a particular game? Knowing this, sometimes it's obvious, makes it easier to look for more games that person was involved in making.


Edited by 8dognight (11/18/17 11:42 AM)

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#1132285 - 11/18/17 11:55 AM Re: Lost Chronicles of Zerzura [Re: 8dognight]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Hello, 8dognight. Thank you for reading my reviews, and even marking one as helpful! smile

I am afraid I have no idea why developers shift from a good and successful formula for the worse. All I do know is that "Hide and Secret: Lost World" was in fact the fourth, but also the last game in the series. This tends to happen when the development team changes or is changed by whomever actually financing the game. I know it has happened to other games I really liked, like Gothic. The formula was changed drastically, from a real-life type of environment to something pretty cartoonish! Turned out that the original development team was replaced. :(

In the case of Hide and Secret: Lost World, however, don't get me wrong. The earlier three games were rather primitive, so to speak. This fourth one was pretty advanced, by comparison. So I guess it was trying to keep up with the times. But I just thought that it drifted too far maybe; and the fact that it was in fact the last game in the series, made me wonder that the changes might not have been welcomed. So just a bit of speculation on my part, no more. smile

As for trying to figure out who the main creative force may be, I am afraid the credits really are not always so revealing. It would probably be better to google around, checking reviews and forums. Nowadays, there is just so much wealth of information online on practically every game. There are even full-length websites on games that have been especially popular, and you can learn a lot on their forums too. So I would search the web for more detailed information on any game. Your anti-virus should warn you if a particular site is not "safe." Hope that helps? smile

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#1132288 - 11/18/17 12:28 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Zurreen]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 38395
Loc: southeast USA
Originally Posted By: Zurreen
Not if you want to risk having to play it 4 times!

I don't have much patience for that sort of thing. There are plenty of games that behave themselves. I had a game called "Dark Sisterhood: The Initiation" that did something similar. Big Fish claimed they fixed the bug, but it continued to happen -- you were supposed to get a necessary object from solving a certain hidden object scene, but you didn't, and couldn't continue the game. I think there was a workaround where you had to be careful to avoid selecting a prominent object before you selected all the others.

Originally Posted By: Zurreen
I know that a lot of players like to read the review and/or try the demo before getting a game.

I don't read many reviews unless I know the reviewer. So many so-called reviewers turn in a review after only playing the demo. If they are warning about excessive pop-ups in the game, that usually doesn't change. If they are warning about bad voice acting, that usually doesn't change. But if they are warning about too-easy puzzles, that might very well change later in the game.

Originally Posted By: Zurreen
But, again, we focus on the game's description than the reviews. You see, we often note that many people don't like what we like, and vice versa. So reviews would not be helpful anyway.

And estimation of puzzle difficulty is all over the map. But something like
"does the main game end on a cliffhanger or does it have a real ending"
is something you can sometimes get from reviews written by people who finished the game. Sometimes the SE actually has a better ending than the CE.

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#1132312 - 11/18/17 04:49 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Originally Posted By: Jenny100
I think there was a workaround where you had to be careful to avoid selecting a prominent object before you selected all the others.


I am pretty sure that was the problem when I played The Veil of Mystery: Seven Little Gnomes recently. I already knew where to go, so I did, and that was perhaps why the hidden object scene disappeared, which was also supposed to provide me with an object that I was to then use to open a grave where I was supposed to find the clue as to where to go as well as another object that we needed at the end.

Quote:
I don't read many reviews unless I know the reviewer. So many so-called reviewers turn in a review after only playing the demo. If they are warning about excessive pop-ups in the game, that usually doesn't change. If they are warning about bad voice acting, that usually doesn't change. But if they are warning about too-easy puzzles, that might very well change later in the game.


I agree. But another problem is that, even if they have finished the game, there are just so many reviewers out there and they tend to mix personal preferences with the objective quality of the game. As you might have seen in my reviews, I don't hide my personal likes/dislikes either. In fact, reviewers are *instructed* to give their personal and "honest" opinions of the game. But I do try to make sure the readers would know what suited or did not suit my personal taste and (what I hope to be) an objective assessment of the game.

Quote:
And estimation of puzzle difficulty is all over the map. But something like "does the main game end on a cliffhanger or does it have a real ending" is something you can sometimes get from reviews written by people who finished the game. Sometimes the SE actually has a better ending than the CE.


I haven't read any reviews to be sure, but that sounds about right: that the reviews can at least tell us whether the SE ending was real or not. But I prefer not to let my own personal impression of the game "colored" in any way by reading what are in effect someone else's impressions. Just recently, I played a few games, absolutely loved them, and was curious as to how other people reacted - and was, well, sad to see some really terrible reviews out there. I am thinking of one game in particular: Next Life. I loved it! Even had my brother try it, and he loved it too - and he is not game-savvy at all. But then, I happened to find a review online, got curious as to what that person had to say, and it was very bad. What's more I totally disagreed with him on just about every point. He had his own "idea" of what the game "should" have been about, based on just the name, and then got mad because the game was not about that at all. Funny thing was that I thought his initial expectation was wrong to begin with! The game was titled NEXT Life, *not* AFTER Life. And I think there are a lot of people like that out there. They get annoyed, even angry, sometimes even for the wrong reasons, and then they in effect "vent" their frustrations, rather than giving an honest "review." That was probably why I decided to start writing reviews, even though it pays nothing, of course (so few people even both to give helpful votes, you know! LOL!) Just hoping to be fair. smile

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#1132325 - 11/18/17 06:23 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Zurreen]
Marian Offline
Global Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 07/04/00
Posts: 31949
Loc: near Yosemite in California
I have also seen reviews for CEs that are downright misleading in terms of describing the content of the game; for example, saying that in a particular CE there is no bonus chapter, when it fact there is. When I see stuff like that it kind of makes me crazy.

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#1132331 - 11/18/17 06:56 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Marian]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 38395
Loc: southeast USA
Originally Posted By: Marian
saying that in a particular CE there is no bonus chapter, when it fact there is.

I can see where they might think that though.
Some games had a weird way to access the bonus chapter.
For example when you hit "Play" to start the game, it gave an option of either main game or bonus game (with bonus game unavailable until main game was complete) and the person forgot about seeing the bonus game there and was looking for it in the "Extras" folder or the Main Menu screen.

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#1132334 - 11/18/17 07:10 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Marian Offline
Global Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 07/04/00
Posts: 31949
Loc: near Yosemite in California
Very true. The download page always mentions the bonus game, though, so far as I know and remember, so if it says there is a bonus game and the player can't find one, it ought to give that player pause. But perhaps there are folks who don't look at the game description. I think people should be more careful, though, when making pronouncements like that.

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#1132344 - 11/18/17 08:50 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Marian]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Originally Posted By: Marian
I think people should be more careful, though, when making pronouncements like that.


Exactly! That's the reason I don't like to read reviews, certainly not before playing a game. It seems a lot of people don't take proper care. They see it as a way of either venting or showing their exuberance, rather than the responsibility it is for letting other gamers know what they can or cannot expect from a game, and even then in just their particular opinion.

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#1132416 - 11/19/17 04:37 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Marian]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 38395
Loc: southeast USA
Originally Posted By: Marian
Very true. The download page always mentions the bonus game, though, so far as I know and remember, so if it says there is a bonus game and the player can't find one, it ought to give that player pause. But perhaps there are folks who don't look at the game description.

I doubt many people look at the description after finishing the game. Even if they did, if the bonus isn't visible in the Extras or as an option on the Main Menu, they might think it wasn't there despite what the description says. After all, how many game descriptions have you read that were inaccurate in some way?

Originally Posted By: Marian
I think people should be more careful, though, when making pronouncements like that.

I think developers should be more careful about designing their game interface. There should not be any confusion about how to access the bonus game. You shouldn't have to do something that looks like it will start a new game and overwrite your one and only save.

Whether the game can be finished in a few hours, whether the person stretches the play time out over a few days, or whether they play the bonus and don't get around to playing the rest of it for weeks -- don't expect the player to remember something they saw a single time the first time they started up the game. The bonus game needs to be clearly labelled once it's available, and not hidden behind the same Play button that's used for the main game. Nor should it be hidden behind a "mouse over" option that only comes visible if you scrub the screen for it.

Sometimes I can't even find the EXIT GAME on the Main Menu -- and I know for sure there's one of those. It's often quicker and easier to try the Escape key or Ctrl-Alt-Delete than mousing over the whole screen looking for letters to light up.

So if games get reviews saying there is no bonus game, I blame the developers poor menu design rather than the reviewers.

Originally Posted By: Zurreen
I am pretty sure that was the problem when I played The Veil of Mystery: Seven Little Gnomes recently. I already knew where to go, so I did, and that was perhaps why the hidden object scene disappeared, which was also supposed to provide me with an object that I was to then use to open a grave where I was supposed to find the clue as to where to go as well as another object that we needed at the end.

With "Dark Sisterhood: The Initiation" the problem was not that the hidden object scene didn't appear. It was that in this certain hidden object scene if you selected the prominent object (that was hard to avoid), the game would immediately kick you out of the hidden object scene before you'd found everything -- before you found the object that was necessary to progress in the game. You'd be kicked out of the hidden object scene without the necessary object and would never be able to get back into the scene again to get the object. Dead end. Even if you started the game over and replayed to that point, it was easy to accidentally click the prominent object and get kicked out even when you were going out of your way to try to avoid it. And of course the game didn't let you save before this hidden object scene. And Big Fish never fixed this obvious problem. Four years later, fresh download of the game, and the bug still happens.

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#1132428 - 11/19/17 06:13 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Originally Posted By: Jenny100
With "Dark Sisterhood: The Initiation" the problem was not that the hidden object scene didn't appear. It was that in this certain hidden object scene if you selected the prominent object (that was hard to avoid), the game would immediately kick you out of the hidden object scene before you'd found everything -- before you found the object that was necessary to progress in the game. You'd be kicked out of the hidden object scene without the necessary object and would never be able to get back into the scene again to get the object. Dead end. Even if you started the game over and replayed to that point, it was easy to accidentally click the prominent object and get kicked out even when you were going out of your way to try to avoid it. And of course the game didn't let you save before this hidden object scene. And Big Fish never fixed this obvious problem. Four years later, fresh download of the game, and the bug still happens.


Oh, wow! Sounds like a game I would *never* want to try. :( Thanks for the heads-up. smile Btw: did you ever report the problem to the tech support again, specifically pointing out that the bug is still there? They would need gamers to let them know, of course, that they did not fix it after all. smile

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#1132434 - 11/19/17 07:44 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 38395
Loc: southeast USA
Many people reported that bug.

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#1132437 - 11/19/17 08:02 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Jenny100]
Marian Offline
Global Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 07/04/00
Posts: 31949
Loc: near Yosemite in California
I think it's also worth mentioning at this juncture that Big Fish can report a bug to the developers, but it's up to the developers to fix it.

There is a potential game-stopper with an older Elefun game that hasn't been fixed to this day. It really surprises me that the developers did not provide an update to fix it.

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#1132446 - 11/19/17 09:53 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Marian]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 38395
Loc: southeast USA
Originally Posted By: Marian
I think it's also worth mentioning at this juncture that Big Fish can report a bug to the developers, but it's up to the developers to fix it.

Yes, I guess it would be more accurate to say "Big Fish never released a fixed version" than to blame them for not fixing it. Big Fish didn't make these unfixed games and probably doesn't have access to source code or other development tools that the developers used to make the game.

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#1132449 - 11/19/17 10:44 PM Re: Casual Games (moved from Lost Chronicles of Zerzura in Glitches) [Re: Marian]
Zurreen Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 08/14/08
Posts: 84
Loc: Austin, Texas
Originally Posted By: Marian
I think it's also worth mentioning at this juncture that Big Fish can report a bug to the developers, but it's up to the developers to fix it.

There is a potential game-stopper with an older Elefun game that hasn't been fixed to this day. It really surprises me that the developers did not provide an update to fix it.


Yes, it's true that Big Fish can only report a bug, not fix it. Let us not forget, however, that it is Big Fish, not the developers, who then collect our money for continuing to sell the game. So it's really their responsibility to use whatever influence they may have left on the developers (who have probably already collected their possibly one-time payment - unless they also receive some kind of royalty or commissions for all sales) to ensure that the developers do deliver that required fix. In addition, recall my experience with Big Fish in trying to write a review for The Veil of Mystery: Seven Little Gnomes game. The game has been out for a few years now, and there are SO many complaints (people even cursing, literally!) on the Big Fish forum itself, yet the Big Fish didn't do anything to get the bug fixed. But what's more, when I tried to use the review to "warn" future gamers of these facts (that there are *fatal* bugs in the game which have never been fixed) to help people avoid the frustrations the rest of us have faced, Big Fish simply refused to post my review until and unless I took out any reference to those bugs! In other words, they are continuing to try to *profit* from that game and actively trying to *hide* any possible warnings from the "prospective buyers," even though they are well aware (surely after my attempted reviews now!) of the existence of those fatal bugs. :(

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