THE SECRETS OF ARCELIA ISLAND


by HITPOINT STUDIOS ; BIGFISH GAMES

Jud’s Game Rating:

Graphics **** Player participation (PP) **** Satisfaction Factor (SF) ****

Frustration Factor (FF) Fair Play (FP) **** Tedium Factor (TF) Nil

COOL FANTASY

Unravel The Secrets of Arcelia Island as you, your father, and a small crew set off on this dangerous expedition! After getting shipwrecked in a storm, you wake up to discover you’re alone on an island inhabited by strange creatures and plagued by four deadly curses. Find your father, survive the curses, and stop the tyrannical witch that is responsible in this fantastic Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure game! (BigFish Sales Blurb)

The first thing you need to know is that there is a problem with the game-on-screen size for PC – the game is too big for the screen, so that Inventories and Exit buttons etc, in fact anything at the bottom, top, and to the right of the screen is inaccessible, cut off!  You need to play is in Windowed Mode which is not easy and difficult to see.  This is rectified in the Mac version, as are quite a few games that fall into this category, where the game fits the screen perfectly.

Troubleshooting tip:  If you find that you have a Title/Mac Bar along the top and thus things are still pushed a little below screen, then go into Settings, Unclick Letterbox, then Unclick Fullscreen.  The game will immediately go to Windowed mode.  Open Settings once more, Click Full Screen and the game will return to Full and Wide Screen in the correct position.  I recommend that you have Full Screen, Custom Cursor, and High Quality Video ticked.  If you prefer it slightly clearer (which I do, but not as much as I like wide full screen) then click Letterbox, which will reduce the game back to the size and shape of ‘old’ computer screens before the advent of wide screens.

The Difficulty Mode choices are Normal and Advanced – as usual I play the Normal for less stress and more enjoyment.  The Graphics are good for the Real world, then excellent, colourful and imaginative for the Fantasy Realm into which the story dives via a Portal.  As there is no Map you need to cross back and forth between scenes till you reach the one you want, then usually return again the same way.  This gets a little tiresome, but only because we have become spoiled by the interactive Maps – I just love them.  But the Logbook/Diary keeps all your info as you gain it, so that you can access it – even in the middle of Puzzles – to remind you of the required details.

There are several tricky spots where you have to think laterally – like using Potions on inanimate things rather than, as you would assume, on living things.  So if you have exhausted all the logical possibilities and you are stuck, then try the slightly illogical.  You will see that even they have strange logic, and will be amused.

I like this game as much for the story as for the game-play, and bought it for PC and for Mac.  I thought that the Control Panel/ Troubleshooting/ Reset to earlier version might take care of the ill-fitting to screen element – which it didn’t.  But I am glad I was able to pick it up for Mac – I used a Free Game coupon, of course – you have to be really in love with a game to buy it twice at fill price!

I recommend this game and hope I have helped with the playing problems.  Feel free to contact me if you have any other problems and if I can help you I will.

Jud House  22/08/2013

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About judsartwork

I write reviews of Adventure and Hidden Object games that are Crime, Fantasy, SciFi, Renovation, Travel, Quest and/or Mystery by genre. I have a Masters in Writing (2006) and have been writing novels, both crime and fantasy for many years; plus Haiku, verse, and prose both fictional and literary. I am also an artist of modern, Acrylic, textural and hard edge work, underwater, fantasy, expressionist, and Cosmos paintings. I use mixed media (Acrylic, Watercolour, Pastels) in textural Monoprints, finding surprises to expose within each work. Having both an analytical and creative mind has meant that I have strong powers of observation, and the persistence required to follow computer problems through till I solve them. Of course I am not always successful, but am willing to ask for a little help in order to then unlock the main problem myself. My Troubleshooting Blog, 'Problems and Solutions', was the result of my tenacity.
This entry was posted in ADVENTURE, FANTASY, ISLAND GAMES, TROUBLESHOOTING PC GAMES and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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