With a huge screen, multi-touch controls, and a vast population of casual gamers, the iPad is the perfect device for a good ol’ point-and-click adventure game. Developer Sungift Games makes a strong case for this argument with their latest offering Lost Circus HD, an excellent addition to the genre which is available in the AppStore for under five dollars.
How’s it Work?
If you have ever played Myst, or any of the thousand other mouse-oriented adventure games to come out for PC, then you know essentially what Lost Circus HD has to offer. The game hefts an impressive (and delightfully vague) plot to create that “just-a-minute-more” feeling of suspense, all while offering up click-based puzzles and inventory challenges to keep your interest as well. Lost Circus HD’s gameplay keeps you hunting for bits of this-that-and-the-other to produce a desired result and move to the next level. To give an example, the game very quickly has you looking through a ticket-booth for stray tickets, which are hidden iSpy style under rubbish, in windows, on the ground, etc. Each step of the game, the player must complete a series of small mini-games and tasks to keep the plot moving.
How’s it Look and Feel?
I’m a big fan of this genre, and the more I played with Lost Circus HD the more I began to like it. I found the puzzles just challenging enough to give me pause, but not so hard that I wanted to tear my hair out, as with Myst. And if I had been stuck, the game offers a hint button that would have suggested my next course of action. The game looks fantastic on the iPad, making extensive use of the big-screen and rich color spectrum. Not only that, but the puzzles themselves are well designed and original. The plot is certainly interesting, though at times a bit cliché. However, that’s hardly a reason to deny yourself Lost Circus HD’s stellar gameplay.
Other users have complained of crashes, and though I didn’t experience any of this myself, I did find a few laggy buttons. I’d push say, the menu button, and occasionally it would either fail to produce the menu or take several seconds to do so.
Is it Worth My Time and Money?
With a wealth of quality puzzles, two difficulty settings, rich design, and a mostly engaging narrative, Lost Circus HD is a true bargain for any fan of the genre. Your free time may suffer, as you’ll spend hours performing tasks and puzzles instead of say, washing the car, but that’s hardly a down-side. And at $4.99 in the AppStore, Lost Circus HD is certainly a bargain.
Forgotten Places Lost Circus HD iPad app [ iTunes Link ] requires iOS 3.2. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.
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