I was extremely happy to see that a brand new game in the Dark Romance series has been launched, even though I am not much into the “romance” part of hidden object games. But in this game, as it usually happens in the series, there’s a twist that makes it worth playing. You’ll have fun with Dark Romance: Curse of Bluebeard and I am here to tell you. Please note that my review is based on the Collector’s Edition of the game.
The story in Dark Romance: Curse of Bluebeard revolves around Bluebeard, the bad guy that you almost start feeling sorry for before you realize that he’s… well… the bad guy. However, the dude has big trouble when it comes to getting a heir: each child he gets turns into a monster so you can at least somehow understand his frustration. And he’s about to give it another try with Rachel, a beautiful and pure girl with a single flaw: she’s engaged. However, begin the bad guy we know he is, Bluebeard doesn’t care too much about her current status and Rachel has nothing else to do than accept to become Bluebeard’s better half if he leaves her current fiance, Richard, alone.
But, yes, things are going to get a whole lot more complicated and pretty soon you’ll be on a roller-coaster-type of a ride that you will enjoy to the bone, even if you are, like myself, not a huge fan of the big romance stories.
One of the best things about Dark Romance: Curse of Bluebeard is the fact that you’re allowed to play both heroes of the game (Rachel and Richard) and see the story unfold from different perspectives. Domini Games, the creators of the series, are well known for being able to implement this feature flawlessly into their titles and Curse of Bluebeard makes no exception. This alone is the twist that makes everything a whole lot better and I consider it the icing on the cake. The delicious, can’t get enough of, icing.
Gameplay tricks aside, the hidden object adventure itself is filled with goodies, one tastier than the other. The hidden object scenes offer a lot of variety and you’ll get to play some things you’re not really used with: for example, there’s a scene where you have to spot the differences between objects reflected in a mirror. Apart from this, in terms of HOS, you have everything: list finds, interactive scenes, pairs, silhouettes… and if you don’t like them all, you can always switch to playing a match-three puzzle. But why would you do that?
The minigames are also very nice and well done. I loved the attention to details in the minigames, some of them obviously crafted with a lot of care. So even though they are generally simple and at most a bit time consuming, they offer eye candy and a welcomed diversity which you will appreciate.
The Collector’s Edition of Dark Romance: Curse of Bluebeard offers all the bells and whistles you’d expect to get from such an edition and a bit more. We have various types of collectibles and unlockables, morphing objects and achievements, replayable minigames and a bonus chapter. They’re all nicely implemented in the game too and they offer even more in terms of diversity and challenge, as well as value for money.
The graphics, as I already said earlier, are really good. In most cases, you will see that a lot of attention has been paid to details, the animations are smooth and the locations are nicely chosen. The sound complements the game well and everything, including the voiceovers, add value to the final product.
All in all, Dark Romance: Curse of Bluebeard is exactly as expected: a beautiful, engaging and fun hidden object adventure that will keep you glued in front of your computer from the first second to the last.