Wisegal, the game

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Well, Here is review the second.


Sunday’s game was called Wisegal. It’s the game version of a movie supposedly based on a true story of a woman trying to escape the mob. The story is a little clichéd but that may be due to the lack of character development needed in such a game. Wisegal is a fairly typical ‘hidden object’ game with two sub-modes sprinkled in.


The first sub-mode is picture taking. Based on black and white miniatures of four pictures at a time, you must place the “view-finder” over the right area in the scene. The pictures were, of course, horrible subjects but anything else would be too easy to identify. I find this type of play gets old very quickly simply because the pictures are mostly of edges of things. However here it was sufficiently rare so it wasn’t over-bearing.


The second sub-mode was placing bugs on various items. Here the pictures in the side bar were better. Lots of suspension of disbelief was required here as the bugs were bright blue and blinking. Not very subtle, at all.


The execution of the game made it a worthwhile play. The scene pictures were clear and clean. Items to find were in real-life proportion and well defined. Occasionally it was difficult to select an item simply because it was small. (ex brass knuckles in the park) For the most part they fit the story line well and were items that the heroine would actually look for in the story.


There are three complaints that I have. Fairly minor ones, even.


The end game included some pretty obvious puzzle opportunities that were not exploited. I can understand why they weren’t as there are no other puzzles in the game. However puzzles would have fit well here and were missed.


My second complaint is the lack of a zoom feature. It would have been much appreciated when I was looking for lost earrings in one of the earlier scenes.


Lastly, I wouldn’t want my son to play this because there were guns in every nearly scene. Some knowledge of gun types(AK-47, Uzi, pistol, shotgun) was required. Again this is a question of the hidden objects fitting the story line. Still, as a mom, I don’t want him to be exposed to the idea that guns are normal and should be common knowledge.


All in all, a nice enough game. Fairly short to play, (2hours or so) and I doubt I’ll be returning to it, but a nice enough diversion for a Sunday evening.




Free game of the day

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I often download and play the free game of the day from gamehouse.com. I’ve been meaning to start reviews of them for a long while but the game from Feb 2 moves me to comment. The game is called “Dr. Wise, Medical Mysteries” and it sucks.

It’s pretty obviously a re-theme of a previous game. Or a re-graphicing. Not sure what to call it. However, that’s not the issue with it. The issue is the inconsistencies with in the game and the constant crashing.

The problems start with the icon as installed. It is labelled “Millionaire Manor - Hidden Object Show 3″. Not a big deal but it shows the lack of attention to detail by the game creators/publisher.

Once into the game it uses a pretty common layout of column of buttons and items on the right third of the screen and the scene using the left and middle thirds. No issues there.

The story of the game is two interns sent to the homes and work places of their patients to assist in diagnossing them. They receive their instructions from Dr. Paul Wise. I can only assume that Dr. Wise is a copy of some TV doctor as his dialog is insulting, rude and arrogant from the beginning.  This doesn’t endear the game to me to begin with. 

The concept of interns being sent away from the hospital doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. It is so fantastic, it escapes my ’suspension of disbelief’ net.

The most major problem: The game seems to crash after each level, unless the level is the chapter end. Yes I persevered all the way through the first chapter and into the next. Again, I’m pretty forgiving and the program crashing was a boost to get off the couch and do other stuff.

The next problem is the incorrect labeling of items. Towards the end of the second chapter, the doctor tasks his interns to find several ‘closeup photos of the patient’. The game requests “old closeup photos of patient” in the item list. There exists only one photo in the scene and clicking it had no effect.  What did have effect was selecting x rays scattered around the scene. That’s quite a closeup if you ask me. I clicked on an x ray because they were obviously out of place in the location. Players who are less experienced with these types of games, (read: less obsessed) might have been completely stuck.  Once four x-rays had been found, the game is willing to continue. Sort of. It crashed again.

I don’t think I’m being ultra critical here. The mis-labeling of items to be found is a common problem in casual games. It’s often pretty obviously a culture/language issue.  But in this case, combined with the crashing and general bad attitude of the dialog and story, it’s just a deal breaker. I won’t be finishing this game.

As a reviewer, I feel the need to have a rating system but I don’t really want to go with stars or some other standard one. I’ve been casting around for one that would fit my life but haven’t found one yet. (Laundry loads, dishwasher loads, cat box cleanings?) If you have any ideas, please feel free to leave a comment.  Regardless, this game blows chunks. No further rating needed.

Have you seen this?

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Ok so I’ve done absymally at posting every day. But I surf every day.

And today I found this:


Win a Bathtub Full of Cereal from Ted Murphy on Vimeo.

(My first ever embedded video!) Check it out.

It’s funny, weird and a cool idea.

Ben 10 for the PS/2 and 2 6 year olds

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I’m sitting and watching the boy and a friend play Ben 10 -Protector of Earth for the PS/2. It’s rated E10+ but Dale bought it for him. It’s very exciting and requires lots of jumping up and down. It’s no more violent than the TV show and the characters all seem to have tag phrases to ensure the fight is well captioned. Puzzles are at about the right level for the two of them although I could very definitely see Jeffrey getting frustrated if he was playing alone.

The game story seems to be mostly advanced by the cut scenes and clips. Not that the boys are watching them much. They don’t skip them but they are too busy trash-talking to listen. The trash talk is mostly of the sort ”You wanna fight? You want a piece of me? I think I’ll have a piece of cake because this is so easy.” and “Missed me, missed me, now you have to kiss me.”

There is no gore and foes simply disappear once vanquished. Lots of health is available in various containers and boxes on the ground. The path doesn’t seem to fork and there are occasional reminders to continue moving along.

Total playing time so far is about an hour and they achieved level three. I’ve seen no evidence of a boss fight however.  Game play is a co-operative mode with both players as Ben10. Drop-in/drop-out is available with restore to the last check point if both players fall off or die.

The graphics are good and the cutscenes feel very much like the TV show, at least to my ancient senses. Reading required is minimal and mostly extraneousto the main task of button mashing.  I wouldn’t actually recommend it for any ten year old with any experience with action games.  These new gamers are enjoying it immensely though.

Ben 10-Protector of Earth was created by Dangerous High Voltage Software and published by D3 Publisher. Ben 10 is owned by Cartoon Network, as far as I can tell. This disk was purchased at EB Games for approximately $20 CDN