Golden Trails 2: The Lost Legacy

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011 at 4:40 PM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Hidden Object Games, Mac Games, PC Games, Puzzle Games, Releases No comments

golden trails 2 the lost legacy ce feature Golden Trails 2: The Lost LegacyAwem releases the hidden object game sequel to Golden Trails: The New Western Rush. The first one takes ya to the Wild West where you travel around town asking questions about a bank robbery and send the bad guys to jail.

In Golden Trails 2: The Lost Legacy Collector’s Edition, yer grandfather has been arrested. Naturally, being the good grandkid ya are, ya sniff around to find out what the deal is and encounter nasty characters like that scallywag Captain Morgan. Something isn’t right about this guy and he has it in for ya. What’s up with that? Just because yer related to the guy he arrested?

Based on talking with the townsfolk and Captain Morgan, yer grandfather used to be a pirate. Yeah, right. Yer the good guy. How can the good guy’s grandfather be a pirate? This hidden object game challenges you with its diversity of puzzles. I never could solve one of the puzzles and had to move on because we had a deadline to make so y’all (Whoops, thar goes me Texan accent.) could stop waiting for the game and play it.

Avast, thar! I had something to do with the game, so I’m biased. This is not an official review. I loved playing the puzzle games. Some were familiar and some were not for the lily-livered. Most of them make ya work hard for the booty and doubloons.

Ayyy, matey. It feels like “Talk like a Pirate Day” even though it’s not until September. Anyway, grab ye some grog and try out the game. Yo ho ho and a bottle of water! OK, I’ll cut it out already. Seriously, let me know what you think.

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Midnight Mysteries: Salem Witch Trials

Monday, June 20th, 2011 at 1:16 PM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Hidden Object Games, Mac Games, PC Games No comments

midnight mysteries 2 the salem witch trials feature Midnight Mysteries: Salem Witch TrialsThe famed writer Nathaniel Hawthorne has died during a freak snow storm, and his ghost has come to you, asking for help. Travel back and forth in time from the scene of the author’s demise to the 17th century, where a town is going mad with rumors of witchcraft and a woman is facing the gallows. Unravel the secrets of Salem’s accused witches and solve the death of Hawthorne in Midnight Mysteries: Salem Witch Trials, a fun Hidden Object game.

The hidden object game is available for PCs and Macs.

The game is the Catch of the Week from June 20 through 26, 2011 — on sale for $2.99.

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Release: Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water Collector’s Edition

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011 at 12:03 PM | Category: Adventure Games, Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Mac Games, PC Games, Releases No comments

dream chronicles book water collectors feature Release: Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water Collectors EditionDream Chronicles is back! Doesn’t feel long ago since The Book of Air came out. In Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water Collector’s Edition, Lyra has found her way home only to find her town hit by a devastating storm. In search of power, the evil fairy queen of Dreams has cast a terrible curse over all of Wish. With her father gravely ill and her mother missing, Lyra must find a way to break the spell. Journey through beautifully enchanted places, solve challenging puzzles, and seek answers to save Lyra’s hometown in Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water.

Download and try Dream Chronicles: The Book of Water.

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Empress of the Deep 2

Friday, April 8th, 2011 at 12:06 PM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Hidden Object Games, Mac Games, PC Games, Puzzle Games, Releases No comments

empress of the deep the darkest secret feature Empress of the Deep 2I don’t know why, but reading about this game made me think of Edward Lear’s “The Owl and the Pussycat” story that I had. First thing that came to mind, “The own and the pussy cat went to sea in a pea green boat.” Strange what the mind conjures from what the eyes see.

Empress of the Deep 2: Song of the Blue Whale Collector’s Edition: Anna awakens on a mysterious tiny island after escaping the destruction of her underwater kingdom. She must find her way to a mystical floating cloud city in the sky, seek out the four Children of Light and save them from the twisted clutches of the Evil Empress Pandora. Along the way she must rescue and heal enchanted animal slaves in this fantastic Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure game!

Here’s the original Empress of the Deep: The Darkest Secret.

Download and try Empress of the Deep 2: Song of the Blue Whale Collector’s Edition.

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Shades of Death: Royal Blood

Thursday, March 24th, 2011 at 11:15 AM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Hidden Object Games, Mac Games, PC Games, Releases No comments

shades of death royal blood feature Shades of Death: Royal BloodSpeaking of royalty, anyone interested in the big royal wedding coming in a month? I wonder how someone messed up this mug that is supposed to show the royal couple only to display Will’s brother Harry instead?

OK, back to Shades of Death: Royal Blood. After your father dies, your sister Violet requests your help at the Family Castle. After arriving, things seem to be in disarray. Explore the castle and help Violet get to the bottom of a dark mystery in Shades of Death: Royal Blood. Use your Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure skills to explore the grounds and solve tricky puzzles. Discover what had frightened your father and find the truth behind his death.

Also available for the Mac.
free download Shades of Death: Royal Blood

Download and try Shades of Death: Royal Blood.

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Solve a Series of Murders in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full Moon

Friday, March 11th, 2011 at 1:07 PM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Mac Games, PC Games, Releases, Time Management No comments

The March Super Sweepstakes: Our hero Felix is giving away hundreds of super prizes every week in March. Buy any 1 Collector’s Edition game or 2 standard version games in a given week, and you’ll be automatically entered in the drawing for that week’s prizes. (U.S. residents only.) Buy more pairs of games for more chances to win!

shadow wolf mysteries curse of the full moon feature Solve a Series of Murders in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full MoonCalled into a small city from the capitol, you have been put in charge of solving a string of mysterious murders! Around the same time as the murders, a wolf has been appearing around town and spooking the townsfolk. With rumors of a werewolf swirling, it’s up to you to get to the bottom of the mystery and set the record straight in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full Moon!

free download Solve a Series of Murders in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full Moon

the timebuilders pyramid rising feature Solve a Series of Murders in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full MoonBring hope to the people of Egypt in The Timebuilders: Pyramid Rising, an exciting time management game! Assistant to the Royal architect Senmut, you have been appointed the daunting task of reconstructing villages and bringing hope to the people of Egypt. Only you can save them from banishment to eternal darkness by the mighty god, Amen-Ra. Hire workers, manage resources, build structures and gather stone all while fending off alligator attacks and more!

The Timebuilders: Pyramid Rising is available for Mac.

free download Solve a Series of Murders in Shadow Wolf Mysteries: Curse of the Full Moon

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The Serpent of Isis: Your Journey Continues

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011 at 8:08 AM | Category: Adventure Games, Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Hidden Object Games, Mac Games, PC Games, Puzzle Games No comments

serpent of isis your journey continues feature The Serpent of Isis: Your Journey ContinuesWell, how about that? This description doesn’t say “Exciting” game.

Find the Tomb of Isis and finish the search that Robert’s Grandpa started! Travel the globe and find clues that will help on your search! After Professor Thomas Penroy is kidnapped, it’s up to you to take over the hunt for the legendry Tomb of Isis in this perplexing hidden object puzzle adventure game. Unravel ancient mysteries and solve incredible riddles in Serpent of Isis – Your Journey Continues!

free download The Serpent of Isis: Your Journey Continues

If you haven’t played The Serpent of Isis, you might want to check that out, too.

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Study: Casual Video Games Helps Reduce Depression and Anxiety

Friday, February 18th, 2011 at 9:46 AM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Game News, Mac Games, Match 3 Game, PC Games, Puzzle Games No comments

I believe this to be true. At the end of 2009, I played Bejeweled Blitz for hours — something I rarely do. We had a family crisis and there wasn’t anything I could do about it. Playing the game gave me purpose (trying to top my friends’ high scores) and helped me relax a little. Games also come to the rescue when my brain won’t focus.

It’s like those times when you don’t feel like going to a party or another social event. Once you get there, smile and chat… you feel better. Casual games (non-violent, family-friendly) do that for me and I can get on with my day. Here are the details of the study:

East Carolina University’s Psychophysiology Lab and Biofeedback Clinic completed a year-long randomized, controlled clinical study to look at the efficiency of casual video games for reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety. Almost 60 subjects that met the criteria of clinical depression participated in the study. Half of the subjects were part of the control group. The participants played three family-friendly, non-violent puzzle games: Bejeweled 2, Peggle and Bookworm Adventures. (All of the games are made by PopCap Games, underwriter of the study.)

The result was a 57 percent reduction of depression symptoms along with improved moods.

“The results of this study clearly demonstrate the intrinsic value of certain casual games in terms of significant, positive effects on the moods and anxiety levels of people suffering from any level of depression,” stated Dr. Carmen Russoniello, Director of the Psychophysiology Lab and Biofeedback Clinic at ECU and the professor who oversaw the study (as well as previous studies involving the same games’ effects on stress levels). “In my opinion the findings support the possibility of using prescribed casual video games for treating depression and anxiety as an adjunct to, or perhaps even a replacement for, standard therapies including medication.”

Ehh… I’m not sure I’d recommend games as a replacement to standard therapies and medicine. But at least, it’s an option that might work with all the therapies or for those who are just feeling down, but haven’t been diagnosed with depression. Depression is a real problem, a real illness. But some don’t see it as a real illness without physical symptoms. Nonetheless, games do affect the mood and chase the doldrums away.

Russoniello said that the games had both short term (after 30 minutes of game play) and long term (after one month) effects when compared to the control group.

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Super Bowl 45 Weekend with Playfirst Games

Friday, February 4th, 2011 at 9:06 AM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Discounts, Mac Games, PC Games No comments

I love Playfirst games. Flo, Diner Dash, Wedding Dash, Dream Chronicles and on and on. Over 60 of its original, non-Collector’s Edition games are available for $4.99 at Big Fish Games through February 7, 2011 at 11:59pm. Use code: Playfirst. With the wintery weather hitting a lot of places in the US, playing games is a great cure for cabin fever.

My recommendations:

Check out the Playfirst games sale. As always, you can try the game before you buy it. Just make sure you try it in time to buy the game before the sale ends.

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2010 Customer Favorites Awards Sale

Thursday, January 27th, 2011 at 9:41 AM | Category: Casual Games Reviews, News & Talk, Discounts, Mac Games, PC Games No comments

Big Fish extends its sale on the Big Fish Games’ Customer Favorites Awards for 2010! Get any of the standard version winners for only $4.99. Just use the coupon code GAMEOFTHEYEAR during checkout for any standard version game. Coupon code will not work for Collector Edition titles.

You can apply your coupon code in the shopping cart during checkout as follows:

  1. Sign in or create a free Big Fish Games account.
  2. Find any standard version game and click Buy It.
  3. From the shopping cart, enter your coupon code underneath the question, Have a coupon code?, and click Apply Code.

The sale runs through Monday, January 31, 2011.

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