Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden
Gameplay 9
Graphics 9
Sound 8

Abyss: Wraiths of Eden is yet another very enjoyable hidden object game from one of the best developers in the genre. The setting might not be that original, but looks great and makes for an interesting story. Since it is a relatively easy title, it is a good starting point for newcomers, but it is polished enough that even veterans will enjoy the experience.

Gameplay: Easy to complete but remains enjoyable throughout.

Graphics: The hand-drawn visuals look great, but the close-up character animations are not the best.

Sound: Nice music, but the voice acting could have been better

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Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden

Developer: Artifex Mundi sp. z o.o. | Publisher: Artifex Mundi sp. z o.o. | Release Date: 2012 | Genre: Adventure / Casual / Hidden Object | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

A young woman takes matters into her own hand and goes off to investigate after her fiancée doesn’t return from a dive. Exploring the area around his last known location, she discovers the forgotten underwater city of Eden. During its halcyon days, it was a utopia, but the Art Deco style structure has since fallen into disrepair. In addition to its sorry state, something sinister appears to be happening inside Eden.

There is no getting away from the fact that Abyss appears to be very influenced by Bioshock, but it is certainly not an outright copy. Apart from the fact that it is a slow-paced adventure game instead of a first-person shooter, the developers also mixed in some Lovecraftian story elements. The result is a game with some rather unique locations and a fascinating story. Your character quickly discovers that the downfall of Eden was due to the “legates” who seized control. These menacing red-eyed wraiths ruled the inhabitants with fear and can still be found roaming the empty halls of Eden. During the course of the game, your character will discover what prompted the arrival of these supernatural enemies and must figure out how to rescue her fiancée from their clutches.

The Art Deco style interiors of Eden work really well with the hand-drawn visuals in Abyss, and the game features about 40 unique locations to explore. The entire adventure might be set underwater, but the artists still managed to ensure that there is plenty of variation. Eden features three very detailed floors where you will find everything from gloomy corridors and secret hideouts to photographers’ studios, libraries, and plenty more. The attention to detail is great, and every location, as well as the items in them, look like they belong. The art style also beautifully conveys the sinister atmosphere of the abandoned and overgrown locations. In fact, there is even a couple of jump scares with dead bodies floating around and the legates popping up unexpectedly. A handy map allows players to keep track of where to go but does not offer the option to fast travel to previous locations. This means there is a bit of backtracking, but nothing too time-consuming.

The animations are a big step up from Cursed Heart and are definitely much clearer this time round. The characters are also very detailed but look rather stiff and somewhat out of place during conversations due to their animations. The game features 14 hidden object scenes, and none of them are overly cluttered, making them relatively easy to complete. The size and color of items are also kept to realistic proportions, unlike some other titles in the genre. Players who are not too fond of hidden object scenes can play the domino-style mini-game instead. Here the goal is simply to connect domino pieces in such a way that specially marked squares on a board are reached. The mini-game is decent enough, but we still prefer the hidden object scenes.

Speaking of mini-games, there are a couple of them sprinkled throughout the underwater adventure. Keys must be found, concoctions mixed, and puzzles solved to progress. The puzzles are all logical for the most part, and we didn’t encounter any that had us stumped for too long. Players more interested in the story and hidden object scenes can skip the puzzles if they wish but will lose out on a few Steam achievements. The game also features a hint system but autosaves prevent these from being abused. As usual, there are also three difficulty settings on offer, ranging from casual to expert.

Although the soundtrack of Abyss doesn’t contain a lot of songs, the ones on offer are really good. The tracks match the game’s atmosphere and never become annoying or obtrusive. The game is fully voiced, but the acting is a bit uneven. Some of the lines delivered by the voice actors sound a bit forced, which isn’t helped by the close-up animations either. It is not bad enough to detract from the experience, but it could definitely have been better. Completing the game unlocks plenty of bonus content, including wallpapers, the soundtrack, and concept art. Players can also re-watch all the movies or replay the hidden object scenes. The highlight once again is the bonus chapter set before the main story’s events. It features a bunch of new locations as well as a different lead character. While short, this chapter is entertaining and is definitely worth completing to learn more about the fall of Eden.

Abyss: Wraiths of Eden borrows more than a few elements from Bioshock but makes such good use of the setting that it is hard to fault the developers for it. It is relatively easy to complete, even on the Expert setting, but we still had fun all the way through.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
  • Processor: 1.5 GHz
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: 128 MB VRAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 1 GB available space
  • OS: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
  • Processor: 2 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 1 GB available space
  • OS: 10.6.8
  • Processor: 1.5 GHz
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: 128 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 1 GB available space
  • OS: 10.6.8
  • Processor: 2 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 1 GB available space
  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 (32/64bit)
  • Processor: 1.5 GHz
  • Memory: 512 MB RAM
  • Graphics: 128 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 1 GB available space
  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 (32/64bit)
  • Processor: 2 GHz
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256 MB VRAM
  • Storage: 1 GB available space

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