We normally like to start off our reviews with an introduction to the game’s story and a quick summary of the game’s overall quality. That said, we’ve run into a roadblock with Mysterious City: Vegas. First, there’s no story. Second, you only feel like you’re in Vegas a small part of the game. Mysterious City: Vegas should ooze Vegas and it doesn’t.
Your best bet to finding out the official story is to read the game’s promotional material, because it hardly reads like a story when you play it. It’d be better to have no story than a contrived one. Basically, you must use your detecting skills to deal with unsolved crimes and find the casino thief. The hidden objects make up your clues and you can earn more points by playing poker, slots and pingo. The biggest mystery of all is, why was there a follow up to the Mysterious City series?
Mysterious City: Vegas contains all the basics found in hidden object games: seek and find items from a list, compare to scenes for differences and make out silhouettes of objects. The game comes with two modes: relaxed and timed. Relaxed mode still has a timer that gives you 130 minutes. Not only that, but also using a hint takes away two minutes off the clock. While 100+ minutes is plenty, a clock ticking down doesn’t make for relaxing play for some folks.
You won’t find anything original in the game play and certainly not in the locale as many games take place in Vegas. Mysterious City: Vegas comes with three mini-games, which you can unlock and play anytime. Five-card draw poker s like the traditional game except you can only draw cards once instead of twice.
The second mini-game, slot machine, has a couple of bugs that awards coins when it shouldn’t have. Pingo, the best of the three mini-games, mixes bingo with keno. The 5×5 grid contains 25 numbers in five rows and five columns. You spin the numbers on the outside and you remove any that match for the corresponding row or column. The more you remove, the more coins you win.
Some listed objects only served to confuse rather than help. "Arrow" referred to the bow and arrow type, but the same scene also had a sign with an arrow on it. Signboard shows up a few times in scenes that have more than one sign or billboard.
In the silhouette hunt and find, the shadows look jagged and unprofessional with too many round silhouettes that turns the hidden object game into a guessing game. Distracting animated items appear in every scene and you can’t turn them off.
The text uses a font that can only be described as unprofessional. It’s the equivalent of using Comic Sans in newsletters and flyers (read: bad). Better to use standard fonts like Times New Roman, Verdana and Arial than some funky font. It also takes work to change any options as you must navigate back to the main menu.
This is a case of what happens in Vegas should stay in Vegas, but we have a duty here to tell you about the game. Mysterious City: Vegas is a basic hidden object game with decent mini-games. The trial offers more than enough time to give you a feel of the game and its representation of Vegas. For those who haven’t played hidden object games, start with the Dream Day series, Mystery Case Files or another hit game to see why hidden object games enthrall many fans.