Developer: PopCap
Price: Free ($4.99 to unlock rest of game)
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Playtime: Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Vacation Quest: The Hawaiian Islands is PopCap’s latest game, a new hidden object adventure game taking place in Hawaii. Apparently the protagonists of this adventure are the messiest people ever, because they keep leaving the places they visit while on vacation a complete disaster space, and it is the player’s job to find the things they keep misplacing. They’re on a 28-day vacation. A lot of things went missing. Some people just shouldn’t be allowed to go on vacation. Some objects just need to be tapped on to find, with a points bonus for tapping multiple objects in a row. Others have multiple objects to find, or objects to tap in sequence to clear them off of the list.

The game is freemium, with the first 3 days, consisting of 9 different landscapes to find items in with three end-of-day puzzles, available for free. The timers are set to be long enough that there’s really no pressure to solve anything under the deadline, and some hints are given for free. It’s enough of a taste that players will know if they really want to keep going with it or not by the time they hit the paywall. The game is currently iPad-only, though there’s no ability to zoom in on the landscape to see things more clearly. The art is relatively clear otherwise, but being able to peck out more details by zooming in is helpful in these types of games.

The artwork is very detailed, with objects very cleverly hidden in spots, though it didn’t feel deceptive all that often. Of course, I’m not quite sure why I’m trying to find owls so often. And these vacationers keep playing chess and poker in very weird spots, for reasons unknown. It’s all really silly, as I suppose any hidden object game tends to be. While I don’t think that players should expect this to be the Peggle of hidden object games, but it’s a solid, entertaining title for those who love finding things amongst other things.

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