If you are an avid HOPA gamer, Fear For Sale franchisee is the one you are sure familiar with. With this fourth release from Elefun Games, the series brought us something we have not seen before; water phenomenon!
Name: Fear for Sale: Phantom Tide Collector's Edition
Release Date: 04 April 2014
Developer: Elefun Games
The main plot in Phantom Tide is excellent, although it is not completely new; the 'water' element really drives the game forward. You take on the role of Emma Roberts, who got a call from Adrian White claiming that he has severe water problems at his place. When you arrived, you not only found out that his water problem is severe, it is actually somehow 'evil'. There seem to be forces that manipulating water around Adrian's house and you believe that this linked in with the unusual death of Julia, Adrian's wife. The opening is professionally done and totally hooked us in, unfortunately, the story gets nowhere after that. The game is extremely slow-paced with not enough twists, turns or exciting actions to keep us on our feet.
Compared to the previous game, Nightmare Cinema; we feel like the visuals are not as fantastic in this sequel. Nonetheless, they are still amazing to look at - bright, colorful and detailed. Those water effects are epic, they actually look as if they are alive. The music is perfect for the game so are the voice-overs.
Another weak spot in Phantom Tide is its straightforward gameplay. Tasks can usually be completed within minutes and although there is a lot to do here and there, none of them required much brainwork. As for the puzzles, they come in variations of the typical ones; nothing groundbreaking but still pretty entertaining. The Hidden Object scenes are easy on the eye, and they can be switched into Jigsaw mode as you desire. What is unique in Phantom Tide is the magical shell you have which can be used to absorb and release water. This tool comes in handy quite often and it is quite interesting to play around with it.
The length of Phantom Tide is just about right, 4 and a half hour with a satisfying ending and another hour or so for the Bonus Chapter. There are achievements, morphing objects and collectibles in the Collector's Edition, the collectibles are challenging to find as they come in various items. You can also earn experience points by collecting them, which is another unnecessary but nice addition.
Fear for Sale: Phantom Tide has a lot of potential, unfortunately, it does not go that far. Despite its awesome presentation and entertaining gameplay, it is unarguably slow-paced and very easy.
Graphics: 4.5/5 Stars
Sound: 4.5/5 Stars
Story: 3.5/5 Stars
Originality: 4/5 Stars
Originality: 4/5 Stars
Gameplay: 3.5/5 Stars
Puzzles: 3.5/5 Stars
Control and Navigation: 4.5/5 Stars