The Secret of the Lost Galleon is a new rum-swilling, swashbuckling adventure from development team Game Pizza. Taking you on the journey of a buccaneer on the high seas, The Secret of the Lost Galleon pits you to complete dangerous missions in treacherous waters aboard your ever-faithful ship, the Crestwiggler.
The Secret of the Lost Galleon is a visually striking game, and it’s one of the first things you notice when you start playing. The animations are fluid, the graphics bright and colorful and the game has a great overall style to it. Played out entirely from a birds-eye-view, The Secrets of the Lost Galleon takes in some beautiful coastal scenery which really adds to the gameplay.
The game starts out with a short tutorial which covers the basics of control and navigation – simply tilt the iPhone to steer your ship and tap the screen to fire the cannon. It’s that easy. A compass in the lower left of the screen indicates the direction that you need to head in order to complete the current objective. When you reach each checkpoint, designated by a yellow circle on screen, one of the game’s characters will pop up and give you advice, instructions or a new mission.
I’ve never been a huge fan of ‘story’ in a game – I prefer the gameplay to speak for itself, so naturally I didn’t care much for the pirate-speak dialogue between the characters in the game. To my dismay, The Secret of the Lost Galleon is played out entirely in a ‘story-mode’ style. Not that this is entirely bad – there is plenty of variety in the missions, the first few of which include fending off pirate ships, delivering cargo, catching fish and racing a local boat. You earn gold for each mission that you complete, and the gold pieces can then be spent on ship upgrades, such as armor and weapons.
It would be nice to see a free-play game mode in the future, allowing players more flexibility in how they approach the game. The ability to pick up missions from different locations and choose which ones you’d like to complete, and in which order, would be a great addition.
A challenging game from the outset, the missions themselves in The Secret of the Lost Galleon are deceptively difficult to complete. There is little room for error and you may find yourself needing to repeat some of the missions several times over before you’re able to get the hang of it. Still – a challenge may be what you’re looking for, and it’s definitely a game that will keep you engaged longer than most.
v1.2 reviewed. The Secret of the Lost Galleon requires iPhone OS 2.2.1 or later and is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch.