The hidden object genre is not one that throws at us a ton of sci-fi, futuristic stories and you can imagine my surprise when I found out about Surface: Virtual Detective. Tackling the Virtual Reality trend that’s growing bigger and bigger in today’s real world and adapting it to the HOPA genre, Surface: Virtual Detective by Elephant Games manages to be a pleasant surprise and really an unexpected one!
Its sci-fi, futuristic setting, sees us start working for the Virtual Detective Agency, investigating the growing number of people who go missing in a recently released Virtual Game, with them going comatose in the real life. The Capsule Nexus 2000 – the ultimate technology when it comes to VR – is Dr. Stein’s creation, but it certainly is not as safe and fun as it seemed at first. And when you bring a personal motive to the mix (your friend Jane goes missing in the game as well), things get even more intense!
Although the game definitely has a more sci fi approach than most hidden object adventure games out there, it’s still not too sci fi so that those who are not really fans of the genre can’t enjoy the game itself! And this is a good thing because not everybody might be as happy as I was when I saw Surface: Virtual Detective available for download.
And you know what made me extremely happy as well? You can create your character in this game, which is an extremely welcome addition for the male gamer (such as myself), since one can get a bit bored eventually to play the female lover who has to save the day over and over again. So kudos to Elephant Games for making this choice!
Regarding the gameplay, I only have words of praise. The hidden object scenes and minigames that you have to play and solve throughout your adventure are really well made! Attention has been paid to details and the developers did their best to stick to the theme of the game. You’ll have some surprise encounters along the way, as well as some intense – if not outright scary – moments every here and there, which is always a bonus.
The HOS the game throws at us are varied and nice, with everything you can wish from a modern game, from mini HOP scenes to multi-step ones and everything in between. The minigames and puzzles are, as I said, following the story quite nicely and they are inventive and fun to play, even though simple at times.
The graphics are, however, the strongest point of the game. Attention has been paid to detail in all scenes, the characters are beautifully drawn and everything looks amazing. Nicely acted voice overs add to the value of the game, complementing the beautiful visuals and taking everything to the next level. Everything is done right in Surface: Virtual Detective!
The Collector’s Edition I am reviewing comes with the regular bling you’d expect from it: an extra chapter, replayable scenes and puzzles, unlockables, collectibles and extra art items to enjoy. A good selection of things that any gamer would now consider the norm for a Collector’s Edition title.
All in all, Surface: Virtual Detective is a brilliant, beautiful and extremely fun game. It certainly comes as a breath of fresh air in the genre and I love its approach: from the near future sci fi settings, to the beautiful characters and scenes, all the way to the voiceovers and entertaining story. This one’s a must play!