Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child
Gameplay 7
Graphics 8
Sound 7

Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child is a new hidden object puzzle adventure where players take control of a young woman with psychic abilities. The game starts out as a quest to find her father who abandoned her at an orphanage when she was a child, but quickly turns into a paranormal mystery. There seems to be much less of a focus on hidden object scenes and mini-games in this title, while your exploration is also confined to gloomy areas such as train stations and factories. However, the Gothic style visuals look great and, while very short, the game remains interesting throughout.

Gameplay: The story is interesting, but the puzzles quite easy and the overall game is very short.

Graphics: The Victorian setting allows for some moody visuals, but most of the locations are not very imaginative.

Sound: Standard voice acting and nice, albeit limited, tunes

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Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child

Developer: World-Loom | Publisher: Artifex Mundi | Release Date: 2017 | Genre: Adventure / Casual / Hidden Object | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child opens with our heroine, Scarlett Everitt, getting dropped off at an orphanage by her father. It would seem that the young Scarlett has a gift for all things paranormal and her father believes that she might be safer with the nuns running the orphanage. Many years pass without her hearing from her dad again, but this changes one day when a grown Scarlett receives a letter addressed to him. Since the letter is the first clue she’s had of his whereabouts since her childhood, Scarlett jumps on the chance to try and track him down. Her journey leads her to the Victorian mansion of a baronet named Steameyer, but it turns out that she might have to put her quest on hold and use her unique gift to help out someone in need.

While Cursed Child is a hidden object puzzle adventure, it features a lot less hidden object scenes and mini-games while focusing the on puzzles instead. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but worth mentioning as many players prefer games with an emphasis on hidden object scenes. It is a good thing that Scarlett has the ability to see ghosts and spirits as Steameyer appears to have a bit of an issue with one haunting his daughter. It is up to Scarlett to figure out why the seemingly malevolent spirit is making such a nuisance of herself and how she can be stopped. In the process Scarlett will also uncover what ties her father had to this family and hopefully find out his whereabouts.

The majority of Cursed Child is set inside the Victorian mansion as well as nearby locations like a train station and factory. These are hardly the most glamorous or colorful of places to explore, but the artists at World-Loom made sure that everything is very detailed. In total there are close to 30 scenes to explore, and they are all dripping with a gloomy Gothic horror feel. Although the game doesn’t feature as many pure hidden object scenes as other titles in the genre, you’ll still have to keep your eyes peeled in every scene. This is because there are 29 collectibles hidden throughout the game, each of which relates to Scarlett’s father in some way. Finding all of these are not essential to the plot or progressing through the story, but will earn you an achievement, so they are well worth seeking out. The game is also rather short and doesn’t feature a bonus chapter, so finding these collectibles also adds some longevity. All of the achievements can be obtained during a single playthrough, so Cursed Child doesn’t have a lot of replay value. You do get access to a couple of extras, including the ability to replay the hidden object puzzles and mini-games as well as re-watch the cut-scenes, listen to the music or check out some concept art.

Scarlett doesn’t have any type of helper to assist her, but she does have psychic abilities. When activated in the correct spots Scarlett is presented with a jumbled image of the past. Players must then rotate the pieces of this image to get a clear picture, which may reveal clues or even result in a playable scene that is set in the past. Thankfully, the game doesn’t feature a lot of backtracking and the map feature enables you to fast travel to any of the locations that you have previously visited. This makes it easy to get around and focus on solving the puzzles. A lot of hidden object puzzle adventures seem to favor storylines involving a search for missing relatives along with paranormal elements, but the story in Cursed Child feels a little darker than most. The ending felt a little abrupt for our taste, but does set things up for further titles in the series.

The soundtrack for this game features some nice tunes, with our favorite being “Waltz of Shadows”, but overall it felt like the game could have used a few more tracks for variety. Since the game is quite short and it is not that easy to get stuck the limited amount of background music is at least not that noticeable. All of the characters are voiced and the acting is about what one would expect from the genre. You don’t encounter a lot of people during your quest either, so the voice acting is mostly limited to the cut-scenes. The interface and controls for Cursed Child are also fairly standard for the genre and anyone who has ever played a hidden object puzzle adventure will instantly feel at home with it. The game features three difficulty settings, ranging from “Casual” all the way to “Expert.” Players can also customize the difficulty by adjusting settings such as the mini-game skip time, hint recharge time, miss-click severity and so on.

There isn’t a whole lot that sets Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child apart from other paranormal themed hidden object puzzle adventures, so players who are tired of this type of storyline won’t find anything new here. However, despite its short length and lack of challenge the game still offers an enjoyable and relaxing experience for fans of the genre. The lack of a bonus adventure detracts a bit from its longevity, but honestly, this is preferable to some of the tacked-on scenes that we’ve encountered in other titles. Scarlett is also quite an interesting character, so it will be interesting to see where her adventures will take her in the future. Overall, Scarlett Mysteries: Cursed Child is not the longest or most engrossing HOPA that we’ve played, but it is still worth a look if you are a fan of the genre.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10
  • Processor: 2.0 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • OS: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10
  • Processor: 2.5 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • OS: 10.6.8
  • Processor: 2.0 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • OS: 10.6.8
  • Processor: 2.5 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 (32/64bit)
  • Processor: 2.0 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 (32/64bit)
  • Processor: 2.5 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 512 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 2 GB available space

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