Game: Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel
Genre: Adventure | Puzzle | Point & Click
System: Nintendo Switch (also on PC and iOS)
Developers | Publishers: Cateia Games | Ocean Media Games
Age Rating: EU 12 | US E10+
Price: EU €9,99 | USD $9.99 | AUD $15.99 | UK £8.99 | CAD n.a.
Release Date: July 23rd, 2020
Review code used, with many thanks to Ocean Media
Originally released on PC in 2013 and then released on mobile, Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel by developers Cateia Games has now been ported on to the Nintendo Switch. Lately, there has been quite a few games point and click games by Cateia Games and publishers Ocean Media ported to the Switch, let’s see what this game holds in store for players.
You play as Detective Bridgit “Biggi” Brightstone in this paranormal point and click. At the start of the game, Biggi finds herself on a much deserved holiday relaxing on a beach, that is, until she gets a phone call from her boss. So much for relaxing on holiday as Briggi has a new assignment to investigate.
Something very mysterious is happening at a hotel in France, a valuable necklace has gone missing and a mysterious guest at the hotel lies in a coma. All signs seem to point to the paranormal, which of course is Biggi’s specialty. You aren’t going to stop until you uncover every piece of the puzzle, meanwhile even if the local police force is not too keen on your participation.
As a point and click game, it’s the standard formula, you investigate your surroundings by pointing and then clicking on items of interest. The story plays a big part in the game as a detective you will talk to lots of people in the course of the investigation.
The story is revealed a little bit at a time and through interrogating ( since this is a detective story) the NPC’s but rather than being able to select options of questions or answers as the game says you can do, you only get one option and the rest of text that appears on screen is the previous dialogue. The previous dialogue is handy to have in case you forget what was said you can go back to it but I was slightly disappointed that I couldn’t pick between a few different questions to ask during the interrogation of the NPC’s.
Recharge Hint System
While you are investigating your surroundings in the hotel, you’ll come across items to interact with and some of the items will end up in your inventory. Then it’s up to you to work out where and when to use these items, or you can combine it with another item in your inventory to make a different item. That can be challenging at times, as the solutions are not always immediately evident, but if you do get stuck, there is a rechargeable hint system that can be used to point you in the right direction.
The puzzles that you do come across are the usual type of puzzles for a point and click game, combine items to solve the puzzles or reconstruct a map are a few examples. And for good measure and to break up the standard puzzles you will also find yourself working your way through a maze, or puzzling your way to the right configuration of switches and solving logical conundrums. They all play a role in Brightstone.
If you are really stuck in solving these puzzles the game gives you the opportunity to skip them to move ahead.
Visuals and Controls
The puzzles are good, the story is engaging and the sound effects along with the music are all fine. Unfortunately when it comes to the visuals in Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel, this is where the game is showing its age. Graphically there were times while playing the game I felt I had been transported back to 2013 as the graphics are quite jagged in some places. Let’s just say the game shows its age when it comes to the visuals and a little bit of an update wouldn’t have gone amiss.
You can control Brightstone Mysteries: Paranormal Hotel either by the touchscreen or the joy-cons. I played the game using both control systems and they both work well. My personal preference after trying both controls was to use the touchscreen controls and these I found to be intuitive and responsive.
While the story is quite intriguing and some of the puzzles can be a little challenging to complete you won’t find anything new to the genre in Brightstone Mysteries Paranormal Hotel. That’s not to say that it should be overlooked as it does offer a decent puzzle game for fans of the genre to pass a few hours of time with.
Final Verdict: I Like It