Review: 3 Hidden Objects Adventures HD

Review: 3 Hidden Objects Adventures HD

3 Hidden Objects Adventures HD (Kindle Tablet Edition)
from 7 Dragons
$1 at time of writing (qualifies for $1 MP3 credit)

What was your favorite part about going to the dentist as a kid?

Okay, hold on there…stop shivering like that!  ;)

No, I was not fond of going to the dentist…I can do it now, but it still isn’t easy.

However, my dentist did have Highlights For Children. Along with “Goofus and Gallant”, I think I’m safe in saying that one of most kids’ favorite features was the Hidden Pictures.

You’d be told there were, oh, seven elephants in a picture, and you had to find them. They might be upside down, or in trees, but they were clearly elephants.

Later generations have had two other similar big hits.

One was I Spy, a whole series of intricate picture books (I’ve just linked to one of them…not available in the Kindle store).

Another was Where’s Waldo?, surprisingly not available as e-books in the Kindle store from what I can see…I’ve linked to an app.

Now, 7 Dragons (which has a number of apps in the Amazon Appstore…I’ve mentioned them before) has entered the genre with 3 Hidden Objects Adventures HD (Kindle Tablet Edition).

This app (I tried it on my Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ 4G LTE Wireless 32GB) has wonderfully intricate pictures, and will be a challenge (but not an impossible one) for adults. Children can also play it, because you can change the settings. By default you have a limited time to find the items, but you can turn off the timer. You can also get hints, which will show you the location of an object.

I’ve only tried one of the adventures this morning. There are three:

  • After the Apocalypse
  • Lost at the Zoo
  • The Secret Forest

I went for Lost at the Zoo, because I love animals. My Significant Other kids me about my animal-spotting ability. When we go for a walk, I’ll literally notice a cat two blocks away…but not notice that a building has burned down. ;)

That makes some evolutionary sense to me: we had to be very aware of animals in our areas. I’m sometimes surprised that other people don’t see them more. When we were kids, we got geckos to run around loose in the house (to eat bugs). This was in suburban America, by the way. ;) One year we got parachute geckos, that would pitch off the ceiling and sort of glide to one of the walls (where they stick). It was a great amusement to us kids as to how few people would notice them at all (and they were maybe as long as your finger).

Regular readers also know that I have some color vision deficiency (color blindness), so I was interested to see if I would spot the objects in the images. That’s often an advantage, by the way: my understanding is that really colorblind people (which I’m not) aren’t as fooled by camouflage, so the military uses them as spotters.

I’m pleased to say that I did fine. :)

I’ll also point out that these aren’t simple outline like the ones in Highlights, they are more like I Spy (although it does seem to vary). I thought it was nice that at least one of the objects was actually hidden, as though someone had tried to hide it…part of the object was occluded by something else in the picture. It wasn’t cheating…you could still identify it, but it makes it more interesting that way.

I also think it’s a good thing that the descriptions aren’t exactly what you would expect. If you are told to look for a “doll”, that could look like a lot of things…and that adds to the intellectual challenge.

You can pinch and spread in the game to make the image larger, and it stayed sharp…that was great!

I often play apps with the sound turned off, but the music here was pleasant…slow, musical, not the midi beeping kinds of things you sometimes hear.

I think the interface is good: you can easily pause the game, for example, which obscures the picture…nice if you get interrupted.

You do need to be aware of how much memory it takes up. With a full install (and you don’t have to do that) on my device, I think it told me it would be 600MB (which is a lot…like a movie). There are 1024 megabytes in a gigabyte. Actually installed, my Fire tells me that it is 311MB at this point…it’s possible it may download more as I do more adventures, but I’m not sure about that.

It also seems to use my battery charge significantly, but so do many apps. If you were planning a long car trip, you might need to take that into account (I use a car charger for text-to-speech).

Overall, I find this a pleasant game. It’s a good way to show off the graphics capability of the Kindle Fire, and a fun, relaxed game (no in-app purchases, I believe, no frantic pace).

Full disclosure: I’ve had some correspondence with Abhi of iReader Review, who wrote me and asked me to talk about this app today (I’ve noticed that a couple of the other Kindle blogs have mentioned it today as well…I guess we’re free to see other bloggers). ;)

I was not given the game, although I was offered a gift certificate for it. I paid for it myself.

I won’t say that I didn’t mention it in part because I like Abhi, but I don’t think it’s unduly influenced this review.

Would I have bought it if I wasn’t asked? Probably not, because I’m not that visual a person, and this isn’t the first thing that I’d be seeking in an app. I do enjoy it, though, and I think my SO might as well. I also like having apps that kids can use, although our kid is an adult. :)

If you do buy it (up to you), feel free to comment on this post to tell me and my readers what you think. You could also probably leave one of the first reviews at Amazon. :) I always think that’s one of the best ways to support something you like.

I do want to say, I think this coordinated request technique (which is what I’m assuming it was) is fine. Timing matters: this app is new for the Fire platform, and lots of people getting it on the same day and/or writing reviews drives up  visibility. I was politely asked to mention it today, with nothing in exchange (since I declined the offered gift certificate). If you have a comment about me doing that, I’d be happy to hear that as well. I don’t accept paid ads for this blog, and don’t choose to use something like Google AdSense.  I think my readers prefer it that way, but I’m happy to hear what you think.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

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