Impressions: Treasure Seekers 2: The Enchanted Canvases

Seek-and-find adventures and the iPhone are a match made in heaven. They’re easy to pick up and play, appeal to players of all ages, and provide a few hours of accessible entertainment neatly wrapped with a shiny little bow. More often than not these days, these so-called casual affairs come bundled with an engaging plot to keep you scouring the screen for those carefully tucked away items. My latest endeavor, Treasure Seekers 2: The Enchanted Canvases from G5 Entertainment, has quickly captured my heart much in the way a previous review title, Vampire Saga: Pandora’s Box did, and right now, I’m looking forward to seeing more from this developer.

I didn’t get the chance to play the original game, so I could only assume this game follows in its steps. You step into the shoes of Nelly, who’s gone looking after her missing brother in search of the Philosopher’s Stone. You’ll need to scour various paintings, which serve as the game’s menu, in order to find clues as to your brother Tom’s whereabouts. As you complete each painting, or scene, you’ll unlock another, greying out the previous.

If you’ve ever perused the Big Fish Games catalog or make it your business to stay up-to-date with other games in this genre, you’ll likely know your way around here. You’ll search around for key items, add them to your inventory, solve (usually) simple puzzles in order to progress, and complete minigames when necessary. Unlike some casual offerings, Treasure Seekers 2: The Enchanted Canvases focuses more on piecing together the mystery behind key inventory items and their relationships with the scenes you’re attempting to complete instead of “find the items hidden here,” so if you’re looking for something that doesn’t place too much emphasis on puzzles, you might look elsewhere. You’ll need to put on the old thinking cap here and there if you’re to reach the end.

Luckily, for those looking to speed through to the end without having to think too much, a hint button is included to make some of the admittedly rather difficult puzzles a bit easier. It’s always around to point you in the right direction, or to get you to look in the correct quadrant of the screen. Unfortunately, it’s a little tough on the eyes to see certain items, especially on the iPhone’s relatively small screen – older gamers might want to think twice about getting this game on the go and opting instead for the larger-screened iPad or PC releases, which are much more accessible for those who have trouble seeing tiny objects.

Realistic art, as is the standard for the seek-and-find adventures I’ve enjoyed lately, is displayed quite sufficiently here. I wasn’t exactly gaga over Nelly’s character design – a little frumpy for my tastes, but a decent heroine nonetheless. Magical potions, apparitions, and even genies made up for her lack of interesting design qualities, so I was fairly entertained throughout Nelly’s search. Each area is intensely detailed and painstakingly decorated to match each one’s “theme.” It’s easy to see a lot of love went into making this adventure a reality, and that’s always refreshing to see from iPhone offerings, especially when they’re ports or different releases of console/PC adventures.

Treasure Seekers 2: The Enchanted Canvases isn’t exactly a long game, but it’s a decent-sized offering chock full of puzzle-solving, item-scavenging fun with a good heft of exploration to sate any adventure’s appetite. It’s detailed, colorful, and challenging at times, offering help when needed and even Facebook updates to tell your friends how far you’ve come. Those with less-than-perfect eyesight will most likely want to opt for the larger-screened iPad or even PC version, however, as certain items were tough to see on the smaller iPhone screen. For the price, it’s a fantastic on-the-go adventure for fans of this genre, and possible some non-gamers too. If you’ve got any one of Apple’s iOS playing devices and find yourself seeking a fun little mobile adventure you’d do well to pick this little gem up.

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