The enduring appeal of the hidden-object genre may have more to do with the less discerning tastes of casual players than the quality of the gameplay, but there’s definitely something enjoyable about hunting around to find elusive nick-knacks.
There’s also plenty of room for experimentation, and The Tiny Bang Story is arguably one of the most out-there examples you could hope to find.
Exclusive to Sony’s range of Android devices until the 5th of August, The Tiny Bang Story comes fresh from its iPad adventure, where it both enthralled and befuddled in equal measure.
Seeing as this is a direct port, the result is very much the same - the game is composed of a series of interconnected scenes, each of which is peppered with objects you touch to collect.
With no text in the game whatsoever, all the hints you receive come in the form of icons or symbols. As a result, it’s quite difficult to know what you have to do in order to move to the next screen.
The game’s logic is also somewhat patchy, with some solutions being so mind-bendingly vague that you wonder how the developers ever expected anyone to solve them, save through laborious trial-and-error.
These issues are compounded by the fact that the mobile phone version is taking place on a much smaller display, rather than the larger format screen of the iPad. Making precise selections is often frustratingly difficult, and it’s also hard to actually see some of the smaller objects. If you have the option, you’re much better off playing this game on one of Sony’s tablets.
It’s a shame that such problems exist, because The Tiny Bang Story is a truly gorgeous game. The 2D visuals are captivating beautiful, and the soothing music is so good you may even find yourself closing your eyes and soaking up the melodies.
As a game, however, The Tiny Bang Story is less compelling. It’s a brave attempt to create a hidden-object title with a difference - and one that isn’t bound by restrictions of language or text - but ultimately its obtuse logic drains away much of the enjoyment.