3 people found this review helpful
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 2.2 hrs on record
Posted: Sep 22, 2015 @ 8:59pm

I was still relatively new to hidden object games when I jumped on Princess Isabella, but this title felt like a good way to ease into the genre. You play a magical princess whose castle was cursed by an evil witch. To lift the curse, you have to click on lots and lots and lots of things to make potions, scare off ghosts, and reassemble all the locks and clocks and musical instruments that people hide ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ keys in for some ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ reason. Let me say up front that this is a perfectly serviceable 2-hour game, with lots of stuff to find, lots of simple puzzles, and some lovingly pre-rendered backgrounds. I get the impression that this is aimed at younger players, because none of the puzzles are very challenging at all, even the ones I am traditionally horrible at like sliding blocks and solo noble. Technically it is less than impressive, seeing as how the resolution only goes up to 800x600 and the Steam overlay is busted, so don't expect to post lots of goofy screenshots for your friends.

There's a weird, childish naivete to these games that I really like, and this game has it in abundance. In this one you get a fairy sidekick who gains powers like fire and wind to help you interact with things. The first power you get is a rock, which you use to smash fine china and vases to find trinkets within. Your companion signals these with a very excited "This could break!" before smashing the hell out of them. Many of the rooms are cursed with some kind of "evil", which often takes the form of skulls, snakes, and menacing garden statues to click. Some ghosts you feed ghost food or drive off with dance music, others you set on fire or shoot with a crossbow (worth mentioning that I am 3/4 for "crossbows essential to hidden object game"). Near the end your fairy friend cheerfully encourages you to capture a bunch of fireflies and then burn them alive in a jar to "release their evil". It's like someone asked a 5-year-old to tell them a story about a princess battling evil and then made a game out of their 40-minute rambling.

My favorite part is the "plot twist" about the witch, which I won't spoil here. Instead, I'll mention that this game has a very unique feature for hidden object games, that being a boss battle! The final room is an INCREDIBLY dense hidden object scene, and you're racing to find spell components on your list before the witch finds the ones on hers. She even has an AI pointer so you can see where she's looking! It was a super cool feature and I'd love to see a hidden object game that did more with it. Overall a fine, low-key clicking experience with enough charm to make up for looking like something made by an edutainment company in the early 00's.
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Faudraline May 13, 2016 @ 1:39am 
Wow, nice review! How did I miss this one before? :D