Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror Collector's Edition
February 16, 2020
3 Difficulties + Custom Mode
Exclusive Bonus Chapter
Integrated Strategy Guide
Wallpapers & Concept Art
Soundtracks & Videos
Achievements & Collectibles
When Mariaglorum’s previous game League of Light: Growing Threat was released in December 2019, it was met with a divided reaction from fans. To the delight of some and to the dismay of others, Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror tells the story of Caroline’s return to her fog-covered hometown through a similar format. Can Caroline help her friend Alan from being corrupted by this mysterious fog before the monster gets to her?
Back in the early days of the Hidden Object genre, hidden object games are purely about finding objects in scenes. There was no adventure, very minimal mini-games and everyone was perfectly content. Although I might be in the minority, I personally really enjoyed the adventure-lite, hidden object-heavy format that was introduced in League of Light: Growing Threat, as I am sure many other traditional hidden object fans did too. While I understand the concern of adventure lovers, especially since both League of Light and Bonfire Stories franchises originated in the HOPA scene – this new format that harkens back to the old days of the genre is indeed different, but it is definitely not bad.
Like its predecessors, The Faceless Gravedigger and Heartless, Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror revolves around a creepy campfire story with plenty of action and a fair share of twists. Surprisingly, this gameplay format fits the horror storyline incredibly well. The game starts out with an impressive story sequence and then proceeds to a tiny adventure portion before arrives at the hidden object chunk of the game. Surely, the main focus of the game is hidden object scenes. Even then, these scenes are creatively designed with great variety and HOPA-style adventure along with mini-games, are thrown in here and there so things are never stale.
That being said, I recognize that the challenge level of Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror is generally quite low, which prevents the storyline to be fully engaging. The hidden object scenes could have been more layered and the puzzles could have much more complex. In fact, at times, this feels like it has a stronger potential being released as a Free-to-Play hidden object game, whether for PC or mobile.
One thing that should satisfy all Mariaglorum fans is the quality of the production. From its amazing cutscenes to its immersive graphics, Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror is undoubtedly a visually impressive game. The voice-overs are also particularly convincing, if only it could have been synced up more accurately with the character’s lip movements.
As a Collector’s Edition, Bonfire Stories: Manifest Horror comes packed with extras. This includes a 40-minute bonus chapter, bringing the game’s total length to roughly 4 hours, a strategy guide, wallpapers, concept art, soundtracks, videos, achievements, collectibles, and a jigsaw puzzle.