Well-known characters from Jane Austen’s novels are causing great disorder by escaping from their own worlds into other books. Does that starter of a hidden object game sound familiar to you? If you’ve ever played Jane Austen: Rogues & Romance, you will probably nod. Now another HOG titled Jane Austen Unbound comes out with the similar storyline and mirror gameplay to great extent.
In Jane Austen Unbound, you are a supporting character written by the author into her world to help solve a vexing problem. Her beloved characters are running away from their supposed world into the pages of other books for a reason unknown. Your job is to find these characters and uncover the secret behind this turmoil by traveling to different places created in Austen’s stories.
The bulk of searching for hidden items is conventional and solid with its familiar mechanics and well-drafted scenes. You need to find the required objects in a scene as quick as possible, hints available with a cool-down time, and complete the specific goal of each quest while charging the mastery level to win rewards. Plot-driven, the game always give a particular reason for you to play or re-play a scene connected to the main story. Yet down to the basics, it’s always about speed, combos, accuracy and high score. As to progress, it’s mutual support between playing scenes and building your Manor. You play scenes to win gold, which are used to purchase various furniture, decoration, heritage and so on to boost your Reputation that is required to unlock new scenes.
Jane Austen Unbound is similar to its predecessor a lot and in many aspects. From the image of in-game characters to some play scenes, from the design of Manor to the details of interface, the similarity speaks for itself. The difference of Unbound from Rogue & Romance lies in several fronts – the manor construction is interwoven into the progression of gameplay instead of being tie-in features; the game is purely about searching for hidden objects, leaving out the find-the-difference play; the storyline is re-organized with all new quests, following the same development though; and the game pace is adjusted as well with a quickened step.
Jane Austen Unbound seems more like an improved version of Jane Austen’s Rogue & Romance instead of a brand new game. It’s unknown why the developer chooses to make another mirror title instead of making improvement on the basis of the old one or exploring a brand new theme.