Disney The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures
Publisher: Microsoft Studios
Developer: HitPoint Studios
Genre: Hidden Object
Release Date: 12/20/2013
In December, Microsoft released a preview for The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures, stating on their website, “Explore the site of an old shipwreck at the bottom of the sea in this exciting preview of The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures! Search for lost items from the mysterious human world above the waves. Find each treasure quickly to earn bonus points and claim a place on the leaderboard! Check back often for more updates to Undersea Treasures, including the first full episode of this adventure-filled prequel to the classic Disney film.”
The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures offers young fans of Ariel the opportunity to explore an old shipwreck for hidden objects in this preview of the game. The level opens with a loading screen of Sebastian dancing, and once you can see the shipwreck, you’ll be asked to find a number of items, with bonuses given for speed and accuracy. If you get stuck, you can click on a blowfish located on the bottom right of the screen to receive a hint in the form of a bubble floating across the screen to the item. (You get bonus points for not using them.) If you play the game with others, you can rank yourself among your friends and earn achievements. In all respects, it’s basically a standard hidden object game with a Little Mermaid theme, though that’s not a bad thing, especially if the license is handled well.
The game itself is cute enough, with charming music and colorful graphics. Some of the shadows of objects are difficult to make out, but once you either figure it out on your own or have the blowfish tell you, you’re pretty much set for each time you play the level. Children may have trouble spotting some of the items behind other objects, or differentiating between different types of seaweed, but most items can be determined from their shadows without much issue. Additionally, especially because this is the only level available at this time, children with better memories may grow bored with the game once they know where most of the items are.
Fans of the series will enjoy the game well enough, but only time will tell as to whether it will hold a player’s interests. If nothing else, there promise to be a number of achievements for the game, so some players may find that to be fulfilling. If it remains at the free price point the preview offers, that, too, is a compelling argument to give it a try once it releases in full, though whether or not that will be the case remains to be seen. It’s a cute entry, and hopefully will not disappoint.
Short Attention Span Summary
The Little Mermaid: Undersea Treasures is worth picking up if you’d like to preview the game, though I haven’t seen any information on when the first episode will be released or how much it will cost. The preview is free, which makes it worth testing out, in any case. The game is cute enough, and if you or your child likes hidden object games, it’s certainly an option, if you have a device with Windows 8.1 on it.