Developer: Method Solutions
Price: $4.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★★
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★★★

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

Take the tried and true hidden item puzzle game genre and throw in caricatures of popular figures from all walks of life. People like the hipster J. Dean, a stereotypical hippy named T. Hugger, and a creepy guy (named M.T. Graves no less) whose house is haunted, all in-character and ready to make stupid puns as they task you with rummaging through their yard sales.

When you combine those elements with the big house contest, which for some reason you are compelled to compete in, and throw in taking the stuff you find and fixing it up to make your house competitive, you have Yard Sale Hidden Treasures: Sunnyville.

If this sounds rather stupid, it isn’t. The entire game is slickly produced, with gorgeous graphics, fun sound effects, and whimsical game play that keeps you engaged as you go from yard sale to yard sale. The hidden objects you are looking for aren’t that hard to find usually, but the game does give you hints and you can search for stars to unlock more as you go.

While the premise of the game makes it sound like it might have more involved game play, that is not the case. The bulk of the game centers on finding items hidden in the beautifully animated yard sales, from trailer parks to haunted houses and science museums. While you then take some of the items you find and re-purpose them for use in your house, those aspects of the game are trivial.

It is definitely a diversion to paint picture frames, cut out glass, and otherwise refurbish the items you find, but in all of this you are completely guided by the game. You have little to no freedom in these activities, so you can’t choose the colors you use to paint, for example, or select one vase over another.

These activities link one yard sale to another and give the game an excuse to introduce new characters and new environments. You can’t fault Yard Sale Hidden Treasures: Sunnyville for this contrivance, but going in it’s important to know this is still just a very good hidden item puzzle game.

Yard Sale Hidden Treasures: Sunnyville oozes charm. From the beautifully animated yard sales to the interesting characters, it works really well. Even the simplest, most inane aspects of its game play contribute to make it a fun and engaging game. While other hidden item puzzle games may provide more challenge, few can match the fun and enjoyment of wandering around and finding stuff that this one gives you.

Posted in: Games, iPhone Apps and Games, Reviews

Tagged with: , , , , , , ,