After delving into Clairvoyant: The Magician Mystery, I couldn’t believe how wonderfully creepy it was. A magician is missing, and you have to find him (or what happened to him), using clues you discover at night when the carnival is closed. You begin outside the gates of the carnival speaking to a policeman about the strange disappearance. There are a group of suspects that work at the carnival, my favorite being the incredibly sinister-looking clown. The levels are split into Acts – just like a stage act. (Act I, Act II, etc.)
The fact that the game takes place at a carnival at night, with soft creepy music, makes it all so dark and mysterious. A full moon hangs low in the sky, with menacing clouds slowly drifting by. Mist drifts out of nowhere at different times. In contrast to all this darkness, there are neon signs that blink and flicker. Everything seems abandoned – except for the occasional character that will pop up to ask about a clue or to tell you they’re just minding their own business (yeah, right.)
Once you start, there are the various objects you can click on around the area. Many are clues, and some are items you’ll add to your inventory to be used later. I found that as I moved from place to place, I was having trouble investigating the scene thoroughly and I sometimes missed something. So, as you can imagine, I had to keep going back to find all those items I had missed. Several times, I was convinced I was going to have to repeat all my actions, until I realized I had to use one of the items in my inventory on something I had thought was just a clue.
The hidden object puzzles were fun and exciting – I liked the iridescent purple stars that glowed when you hit an object. The items that were highlighted so you had to match them to complete them, I thought were also a nice touch, and made it much more enjoyable. All of the puzzles seemed very easy, and you had to do quite a bit of them to retrieve items, which seemed to take away from the flow of the progression of the game. If you hit the hint button, be prepared to wait a while for it to fill up. It seems to take forever. However, if you find all 26 Ace of Spades cards, this won’t be the case so keep your eyes open for them!
I was really excited to find the fortune teller machine. I mean, how creepy can you get? Eyes that glow in a darkened glass box interior, and then you put your coins in and the lights flash on, and you have your mysterious fortune. However, when I put my coins in (the ones I had to search and find) as well as the lever, I received this message:
Your path is dangerous
Your foes deceptive
Only clues and resolve
Will help you detective
To put it mildly, my excitement was a little bit dampened, as I was hoping to get something wonderfully complex. After all, it’s a fortune telling machine. I didn’t really consider the fortune to be very helpful, as I already realized I was on a dangerous path with deceptive foes. And I was already working pretty hard to collect the clues so I could figure everything out, so no secret there. And then I clicked on my notebook for a little more detail, and I wish I hadn’t, as it offered a not-so-helpful comment: An intriguing card dropped from the destiny machine – could it be a warning? My reaction: sigh.
The background music is very creepy. It starts with a lively carnival tune, and then it turns a little sinister and softens a bit. It’s not distracting, and really adds to the dark ambiance of the night. It’s already eerie enough that you’re walking around a seemingly abandoned carnival – the warped music makes you feel like something evil is lurking around each corner.
Overall, Clairvoyant: The Magician Mystery has a great ominous atmosphere that makes it fun to play. I wasn’t crazy about wandering around the same area so much before I could move on, or the numerous hidden object puzzles that would interrupt the flow of the game. However, if you want something uncomplicated and love to play easy hidden object puzzles, then this is the game for you.