Nightmares from the Deep 2: The Siren’s Call, is developed and published by Artifex Mundi, the prolific point and click adventure game creator. They have a long list of games already on steam and mobile, but luckily for console gamers, they are releasing their games as quick as they can port them. This game is a direct sequel from the previous game in the series, Nightmares from the Deep: The Cursed Heart. The story starts with an artifact found, and a Siren captured. It is up to you to stop the evil Mayor, and restore balance to the city.
The game, like all of the other Artifex Mundi titles, is point and click adventuring at its best. All of their titles have a similar art style, but still feel fresh with their range of stories they come up with. There is a limit to what can be done with point and click, but they do a great job of keeping the pace of the game moving, and add in occasional jumps and cutscenes to keep pushing you forward. You are constantly finding new items, using those items to solve puzzles, and then finding a hidden object scene to complete. Like the previous game in the series, you have the option of the hidden objects or a game of mahjong. This is a good option for those that aren’t good at finding things, so it doesn’t slow the game down more than it needs to.
Some of the puzzles to progress in this game are fun to figure out, and although convoluted and exact on their solution, they do work. It is fun to put pieces of objects together, adding lighter fluid to a lighter you find, or making makeshift weapons out of pieces found throughout the map. Nightmares has a fast travel system in place, like many of the games before it, that makes it easy to get where you need to go. The sparkling objects when the game thinks you are stumped also helps out, but that is only available in the easy mode. I recommend you play through the game on casual first anyway.
The Not So Bad
This game doesn’t have a lot of bad qualities. This isn’t a first person shooter, it is a point and click adventure game, so don’t expect a ton of action. The story does drag on a little toward the end, but is overall a quick game to complete. The voice acting, although improved from their previous games, does still sound campy and forced. The mahjong game also has some control issues, when trying to select the tile you want, but on a game originally made for clicking with a mouse or touch, this can be overlooked. My only other minor gripe with the game is the fact that you are required to play through it twice for all of the achievements. While I do respect the devs for giving the option, I don’t like being forced to play a certain way.
The achievements in the game are mostly story related, with a few that are time based, or completion based. The time based achievements are for completing a puzzle and mahjong game within a minute. The puzzles are normally not that complicated, but with the control issues with mahjong, completing a mahjong puzzle is quite a feat. Luckily there is a glitch where you can press down on the directional pad at the same time you select the last hidden object, and it counts it as completing the mahjong puzzle. The remaining achievements are for completing all of the hidden object puzzles, and completing all of the mahjong games.
This game will require 2 playthroughs to obtain all of the puzzle achievements, so it is best to play the game on casual first, so you understand what you are doing, to make your expert playthrough more enjoyable. Of course, if you are a point and click expert, then go for it on expert on your first attempt!
Nightmares from the Deep 2 should not be missed for those that love point and click adventure games, but if you are new to the genre, you can’t go wrong with any of the Artifex Mundi titles. The story pacing keeps you interested with rewarding puzzles and a bonus adventure once you complete the main game. I highly recommend this game! At $9.99 the price is right, and hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
A copy of the game was provided by the publisher for this review