Chronicles of Mystery - Curse of the Ancient Temple - Review

Chronicles of Mystery - Curse of the Ancient Temple
Ages: Everyone

Oh, those Crusaders! When they are not dealing with infidels, they seem to be carrying valuable and super-secret treasures, hiding them and arranging for guardians to care for them for hundreds, if not thousands of years, mostly on the Islands of Malta!

In the Chronicles of Mystery - Curse of the ancient Temple DS game, City Interactive has started with a cutscene of some of the above Crusaders on the Maltese island of Gozo in 1565, carrying an elaborate box on a mountainside. The ledge gives way, and one of the band snatches something from the side of the box before they all tumble down. Fast forward to 9 November 2009 and meet Sylvie, the young archeology assistant who is working with the Professor to prepare an exhibit at the Crusader's Museum.

But, something is going on! There seems to be a plot afoot which affects the Professor, who has gone missing. In this Point-And-Click adventure, you play the part of Sylvie and try to get to the bottom of this - find the professor, see why this project has attracted so much sinsiter interest, and perhaps save the world!

This is a cross between a point-and-click adventure and a seek-and-find game. Some of the items you have to find do get used as part of the gameplay. The scenes are graphically splendid and work well on the small screen. Searching for items is done in a movable window - the full scene is shown in the upper screen, while the lower screen can be slid around and shows a larger view of about a ninth of the image.

Gameplay is quite linear - you cannot get out of a scene until you have done all that can be done there, which can be annoying if you just cannot figure out that last thing to do. The help system seemed unlimited - clicking on the help icon gets you little sparklies around the area in which you are supposed to find/do something. The story is interesting and the action compelling enough to make completing the game a satisfying experience, so banging away at a hard or obscure spot is, in the end, worth it.

You can replay any of the puzzle segments as mini-games from the main menu. There is one procedural flaw that surprsed me. As you play along, you unlock other Hidden-Object mini-games which you can access from the main menu. But, there does not seem to be any way to replay a section of the story - which means that some of these mini games remain permanently inaccessable - unless you replay the entire game. Not reason enough to replay it, in my mind. The occasional odd language indicated that this wasn't created by an native English-speaking group, and, as is common, the ending was a bit abrupt.

All in all, though, the game kept me going till the end.

Fun Factor: Good graphics, some different puzzles styles
Female Factor: Thoughtful and adventuresome heroine
Player Friendly: No mention of saves, but what is done automatically seems adequate

Reviewed by: Lou - 11/09

  • Chronicles of Mystery - Curse of the Ancient Temple
  • © City Interactive $19.99
  • Platform(s): GBDSDS
  • To Order: DS $19.99
  • Game Site: