realMyst Review – iPad Exclusive
Welcome to iOS Hangout’s review of realMyst, a game that has been released for the Apple iPad. It requires at least a 2nd generation iPad or newer because of how graphically demanding it is.
The story begins with a man named Atrus falling into a fissure in an attempt to destroy a linking book. These are special books that allow a person to travel to another place just by touching the portal window inside of them. Unfortunately for Atrus the book is not destroyed as he hoped and ultimately ends up being discovered by you – the player.
From here you’re immediately teleported to an island called Myst. Which is a place filled with all sorts of, well, mysteries. The story progresses once you enter the library and find two books on either side of the room. There’s a red book and a blue book that look quite ominous. As you tap on each one you’ll see a static video of two brothers telling you to recover the lost pages of their books. Every time you bring a corresponding page back, the videos will get a little bit clearer. During the adventure they both plead with you not to trust the other.
When you first arrive on Myst island you’re greeted with a tutorial that explains the controls. Everything here feels extremely natural and intuitive on the touchscreen. Holding one finger down moves you forward, double tapping allows you to run, and using two fingers moves you backwards. Then of course swiping the screen around pans the view around. You’ll also be interacting with various objects within the game via touch. If you see a lever for instance, all you have to do is tap on it and slide your finger up or down to use it.
realMyst is all about exploring at your own pace. There’s no need to rush and there isn’t a time limit in the game. The island acts as a hub to five other worlds that can be completed in any order. Though you must solve a puzzle to gain access to each one. Every world also has a single red and blue page hidden within them. Your main job is to find these and bring them back to the island to progress the story. The puzzles in the game range anywhere from really tough to very difficult. I personally found the difficulty challenging but also really rewarding. You’ll have a lot of satisfaction if you can solve the puzzles on your own.
In terms of replay value there isn’t much incentive to come back to the game. After the game ends you can revisit any of the Ages but there’s nothing to do in them besides look at the scenery. I’d say the average gamer will get around 5 to 10 hours out of this title.
Graphics and Sound
The realMyst game is actually a remake of a PC version released in 2000. Comparing the two, the iPad version clearly has superior graphical effects. Though it is lacking day and night cycles which the PC version had. Still I think anyone would agree that these are some of the best graphics we’ve seen on the iPad.
Unfortunately all of this eye candy does come at a cost in performance. I’m playing the game on a 3rd generation iPad,which runs at the maximum resolution. You can see there are moments of slowdown and micro load times while playing. It’s be nice if there was an option to choose performance or clarity for the graphics. Hopefully this can be addressed in a future patch.
The audio is also great, the music is used sparingly and fits well into each area whenever it fades in. Most of the time you’ll simply hear environmental sounds such as wind blowing or running water. It really sets the mood and gives you a feeling of solitude within the game. You’ll definitely get a more immersive experience if you wear headphones while playing, which I recommend.
I applaud the developers for taking extra time to update and port realMyst to the iPad instead of releasing the original version. This couldn’t have been an easy technical task for them. I’d highly recommend you add realMyst iPad to your game collection if you love puzzle/adventure games.
iOS Hangout rates realMyst a 4.0 out of 5.0