This is one of those unusual dark hidden object mysteries that takes a little more effort to understand. There is a history to the story, and things are not always as they seem. In Mystery of the Ancients: Lockwood Manor, we open with a small animated film set in 1866. In the basement of the manor, there are some men in dark robes, and it looks as though they are attempting to summon a demon. They succeed, and trap the demon. These men then take the demon’s dark power to use as their own, and there the story cuts to present day.
We are here to rescue our best friend, Jenny. It seems her boyfriend’s elevator no longer goes to the top, and she fears to be in danger. When we get to Lockwood manor, we find Jenny and John, her boyfriend in the basement, where John has her chained up. She is in a drawn circle with symbols and talismans on it. When we go to confront John, we are injected with something, then thrown into a cell. There is a skeleton of a prisoner chained to the wall, and we’d best get out so we don’t end up like he did.
The game takes all over the grounds of the crumbling manor, but if you find yourself getting sleepy, turn off the background music. If you were caught up in this story in a real situation, you would not have background music humming over your head. In fact, I have started doing this with all the online RPGs and hidden object mystery games I play. It really makes it easier to focus. So, shut the music off. The game is set at night, so there is lots of grey artwork, but when it comes to the hidden object puzzles, they are lit up fairly well, and most things are easy to find, but some can be tricky. You will also find yourself referring to the journal you carry your clues in often. Every little item you pick up or thing you learn leads to something new. The devs did make one small mistake in that they put the trunk of the crashed VW Bug in the back of the car rather than the front, but since it was against a tree, I guess it just made the puzzle easier to do. Who crashes the rear end of their car against a tree, really?
Mystery of the Ancients: Lockwood Manor is pretty good as a dark, demon-infested casual game goes, and it can draw you in. If you jump when you hear a loud noise, or when one of your pets jumps in your lap (thanks a lot, Screechy!) unexpectedly, don’t be shocked. It’s all part of the atmosphere. Have fun!