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p55carroll
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Just to promote some discussion for the fun of it, I thought I'd do a series of forum posts based on the 53 genres listed in VGG.* Here's a GeekList of all 53 threads. And a POLL.

This thread's genre: Hidden Object

Listed below are the top-ranked games in this genre. How does the list fit with your experience?


Have you played any of these games? Which ones? Do you agree or disagree with the ranking? How would you rank the games listed? Are there other games in the genre that you think should be in the top ranks?

And by the way, what do you think of this genre in general?

Nightmares from the Deep: The Cursed Heart
Grim Legends: The Forsaken Bride
Enigmatis: The Ghosts of Maple Creek
Nightmares from the Deep: The Siren`s Call
Hidden Folks
Grim Legends 2: Song of the Dark Swan
Nightmares from the Deep: Davy Jones
Enigmatis: The Mists of Ravenwood
Clockwork Tales: Of Glass and Ink
Abyss: The Wraiths of Eden


*In case you don't know how to find the VGG genres and rankings, hover over Browse at the top of the screen, then click Genres. Click a genre, and scroll down to Linked Items. Click the Sort window, and sort by Rank.
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My wife and I have played all but one of those. At a certain point, they all just blend together and I can't tell one from the rest unless they really stand out.

Of those, we probably most enjoyed Abyss. Of the games not at the top, Lost Lands would be our collective favorite.
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Monica Elida Forssell
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I have played a lot of hidden object games on my Steam account. That was kind of the thing that made me use Steam more actively. I love the exploration aspects of it. Searching, finishing tasks, solving puzzles. Relaxing, good fun.
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Hidden object games became a bit of a guilty pleasure for me ever since my wife introduced me to the Mystery Case Files series by Big Fish Games. I've played all but 1 of the top 10 and I would say the ones listed are definitely the cream of the crop in this genre. I've never played Hidden Folks though, so can't comment on that.

I'd probably put one of the Enigmatis games as number 1 though.. possibly Mists of Ravenwood.
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Never tried anything from this genre, but maybe I should.
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I dig this genre and I've played all the ones in the OP. My favourite HOGs:

Enigmatis trilogy
Hidden Folks
Paranormal State: Poison Spring Collector's Edition
The Tiny Bang Story
Mythic Wonders: The Philosopher's Stone
Fairy Tale Mysteries 2: The Beanstalk
Adam Wolfe
Questerium: Sinister Trinity

They are good relaxing mindless fun after work.
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This discussion has actually prompted me to go back and rate the ones I played in the last couple of years but had neglected to rate. I don't know if that will affect the genre ranking, as there only seem to be about half a dozen of us that rate these games.
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Caroline Berg
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I find HOGs too easy, even when playing on the hardest of difficulties. I tend to finish them in around 2 hours. But I have to give them credit for the resurgence of point-and-click adventure games after HOGs became popular.

I find the quality of the games wildly varies, though there are some really good ones that stand out above the rest.

That said, I have played LOTS of them, because sometimes I just want something that feels like an adventure game, but doesn't require the brain power.

Some of my favorites:

Eden's Quest: The Hunt for Akua
Empress of the Deep series
Grim Legends series
Deadtime Stories
Kuros

I've also worked on a HOG game too, as my first game industry job after college.
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Caroline Berg
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...124 to run fleeing from the mountain. ...125 to use a rope to climb the cliff. ...126 to quickly cast "summon stairs." ...127 to dodge under the falling rocks.
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Grimwold wrote:
This discussion has actually prompted me to go back and rate the ones I played in the last couple of years but had neglected to rate. I don't know if that will affect the genre ranking, as there only seem to be about half a dozen of us that rate these games.

Ooo, yeah. I completely forgot to rate the ones on my hardcore list last year! Oops! At least I have links to when I wrote up my thoughts about them...
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Hidden Folks is a nice and cute little game, but for the most part I hate these games. I just really despise them.
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The history and current state of the genre, more than any individual game, is one of the more curious things in gaming.

In terms of roots, the genre goes back to Myst in every element EXCEPT for the one in its name: hidden objects. But the structure, progression, and visual organization of the games is all Myst, all the time. That's fascinating to me.

The hidden object part appears to come from Highlights magazine - at least that's my only cultural reference for it (I'm sure those types of drawings have deeper histories).

The truly weird thing is that HOGs are basically the 'bodice rippers' of gaming. Go to any Goodwill or equivalent thrift store in the United States, and glance at the paperback section. Survey the wall of mass-market romance novels. In market terms, that is what HOGs are. They are produced en-masse within a very familiar mold and marketed aggressively to a demographic that actually stays out of most other gaming.

Personally, I have a child-like love of the mold these games are formed in, but the way they are churned out makes it hard to like very many of them individually. I decided it was too much work sifting through them. But, when I was still playing them, I was particularly fond of Written Legends: Nightmare at Sea, Vampire Saga: Pandora's Box, Drawn: The Painted Tower, Awakening: The Dreamless Castle (despite its brevity), and A Gypsy's Tale: The Tower of Secrets. Phantasmat was solid as well. That seems like a lot of games to rattle off, but for every title that musters some charm, there are at least five that, shall we say, do not spark joy.
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That top 10 list reads like Artifex Mundi's game catalogue.

I'm guessing the one without a colon isn't theirs!

I've played quite a few of those, and while they aren't the types of games I'd sit down and play on my laptop in short bursts on my phone they can be pretty good.
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Tried one once and found it boring but it could have just been the time of day or something since I didn't try very hard. Could be interesting if they have a good story.
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Yeah, story is a bit important for it to be catchy. There are some collections one Steam that are pretty good, and I find them engaging.
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If anyone is looking for a relaxing HOG with a bit of farm management thrown in then I can recommend Farmington Tales.

I've just noticed it's 80% off on Steam. Well worth getting at that price (under $1/£1/€1)!
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p55carroll
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Cricky wrote:
If anyone is looking for a relaxing HOG with a bit of farm management thrown in then I can recommend Farmington Tales.

I've just noticed it's 80% off on Steam. Well worth getting at that price (under $1/£1/€1)!

You talked me into it. Now I've played a HOG (two hours' worth of one).
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Patrick Carroll wrote:
Cricky wrote:
If anyone is looking for a relaxing HOG with a bit of farm management thrown in then I can recommend Farmington Tales.

I've just noticed it's 80% off on Steam. Well worth getting at that price (under $1/£1/€1)!

You talked me into it. Now I've played a HOG (two hours' worth of one).

Yayyy!

After posting that I went and picked up the sequel. It's not on Steam so I hadn't picked it up before but I downloaded it from Big Fish games last night.
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I recall an old robot game for computer when I was young, like in the 90s.
I can`t remember much of it, but I felt I needed to move around in rooms and find objects and stuff. It was a fun game, but the one who owned it didn`t like that I wanted to play it all the time... whistle
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