Casual games have become ever more popular in recent years, as they appeal to those playing on mobile devices as well as people who just want a little light fun on the PC. Hidden object games or HOGs fall into this category, as they are easy to learn and don’t involve a win or lose mechanic.
Can you uncover the conspiracy?
The Blacklist: Conspiracy is one of the latest free hidden object games to hit Windows devices, sweeping competition away with great artwork, challenging play and a great tie-in story based on the hit NBC show of the same name. This game follows Raymond Reddington, the Concierge of Crime, who hunts down thieves and fugitives among other shady characters. Fans of the popular Blacklist show will be familiar with this theme of setting a thief to catch a thief, as you follow Raymond through an intriguing plot. There are several aspects to the gameplay in this title, not just limited to finding hidden objects. You can interrogate subjects, which lets you detect lies and contradictions during tense standoffs. You can enter mini-games where you forensically examine clues found at crime scenes, seeking out the truth. These elements guide you through a very interesting story with twists and turns, plus there’s a choice element in which you can make moral decisions that affect the direction of the story. Altogether, this does offer more than your standard Hidden object game, though it should also be said that there are more advanced HOGs out there.
A visual treat with a lot to find.
The hidden object core of The Blacklist: Conspiracy is where you’ll spend most of your time. The essence of this is examining a 2D scene, looking for a list of items you’ve been given, clicking on each one as you spot them. This can make for a tricky and even frustrating puzzle, though the game does have hint options in case you get stuck. The 2D art of the areas is very well drawn, as expected from Gameloft, who developed several leading mobile games. The close-up pictures are of very high quality and the same can be said of the characters, including those recognised from the TV show. When the hidden object mechanic gets tiresome, the mini-games offer some reprieve. These simple puzzles will give you a change of pace and often revolve around some key plot item, so they can be tense and exciting to solve. Though visually impressive, the audio in the game is pretty standard fare.
A standard offering but great for HOG and Blacklist fans.
The Blacklist: Conspiracy is certainly going to appeal to fans of the TV show, with an all-new storyline and all their favourite characters. Being able to affect the story adds a level of replayability, which is great for a free game, though it should be noted that the game has a lot of optional micro transactions. Though the hidden object mechanics are nothing new, the art is good quality and this game will appeal to most players.