Haunted Manor: Painted Beauties Collector's Edition
May 25, 2014
Top Evidence Studio
3 Difficulty Settings
Exclusive Bonus Chapter
Integrated Strategy Guide
Wallpapers & Concept Art
Soundtracks & Screensavers
Achievements & Collectibles
First things first, the story has great potential; Stephan Black has made a pact with the Death in exchange for his wife and son’s lives. Now, whenever he paints beautiful women, they would disappear and you are his latest unfortunate victim. You are then transported to a haunted manor on the mission to save all the souls and also, save yourself! However, a great story goes nowhere without a good production. In this case, while the story is solid; the cutscenes are not up to the standard. they look very cheap with cheesy effects and sub-par voice overs, no attempt at lip syncing has been made.
The graphics are depressing. The color tone is grayish, lightning is dark and dreary – we do not know that the developers hope that these aspects would create a creepy atmosphere or not, we only know that they do not work. Ironically, Haunted Manor is not very haunted; while all the haunted aspects are there from the skeletons to thick fog and so on, the creepy factor is just missing. One thing that is in total contrast to the game’s atmosphere is the annoying angel which serves as your hint button; he giggles every single time when the hint finishes recharging.
On the gameplay side, there are a couple of noticeable additions; voice overs, difficulty modes, an interactive map to mention a few. Unfortunately, we still found the game to be very tedious and boring. The pace of the game is extremely slow and the mood is unbelievably sleepy. Moreover, there is nothing to be excited for; hidden object scenes are standards so are the puzzles. Another annoying aspect is the overload amount of backtracking; even though there is a jump-map, the map shows nothing other than a shot from each location so it is pretty useless.
At least, Haunted Manor: Painted Beauties does have a good length- the main game lasted over 4 hours for us. Regrettably, this satisfaction does not come with the bonus chapter since it only took us under a half an hour to complete. Other extras are fine, the usuals that can be expected.