Echoes of Sorrow is a good hidden object title. It has an interesting story with a couple of twists and turns we didn’t see coming, although it ends abruptly, a trend we’re seeing more and more of that needs to end. We’d like to see developers at least put The End at the end of a game so we know it’s coming. That’s not too much ask for. The hidden object aspect is fun, although very easy. Even with it’s simplicity, no one squeamish or underage should probably play it – the story is very dark.
Through an accident, a woman finds herself in the hospital. She’s in a deep sleep she can’t escape until she unlocks her memories, which involve the deaths of people very close to her. She finally figures out what tires all the deaths together and is able to escape her dream and confront the killer. All along the way, we were intrigued and couldn’t wait to see what piece of the puzzle would unravel next. When we learned her relationship to the killer, it was both surprising and fulfilling. We just wish the ending had a little more meat to it – ending the story abruptly and sending us back to the title screen was a let down. It wasn’t a ‘to be continued’ ending, though, so the story was finished and for that, we were grateful.
The hidden object gameplay was good. There wasn’t much innovative brought to the table, but tried and true is always a good way to go, especially if you nail the story. Areas with lists for hidden object gamplay were highlighted with sparkles and the objects weren’t too difficult to find. The hint, if needed, was easy to use and refilled pretty fast. Interactive areas where puzzles or objects could be used were highlighted in purple, so we always knew if a screen still had something for us to do. The only catch is that sometimes, we’d have to return to previously empty screens to find another object that would be useful from the hidden object areas. A little challenge in a game is not a bad thing, although to be honest, the challenge in this game was minimal all told. There are some simple puzzles, outside of inventory puzzles, but they aren’t hard or interesting enough to add anything to the game.
The graphics are gorgeous. It really sets the tone for the story. There are quite a few locations, although the areas where hidden object areas are found are few and far between. If we had one complaint, it would be that there was a lot of missed opportunity to expand the length of the game (it’s pretty short) by adding in more hidden object scenes. It would take nothing away from the story that was being told and would have added gameplay, never a bad thing. The audio is fine and does its job, but we would have liked to have seen the envelope pushed there as well.
Echoes of Sorrow is a good game that just misses being great because of its length and lack of extras. There’s no timed mode, no extra content once the game is completed and nothing to engage the player to play it again. The developers invested so much into developing a fantastic story and creating a game that is beautiful, so it’s a shame that its flaws do detract from the overall enjoyment. Even with that said, it’s well worth playing for anyone who enjoys a good scary story coupled with some fair hidden object gameplay.
|Big Fish Games||Shockwave||iWin|