So for the past several weeks I have been playing three games. One, for the Nintendo DS is: Professor Layton. The other two (for the PC/MAC) are Myst and Riven. I have really been enjoying them as I really like puzzle games.
All three are also games I never thought that I would like.
Professor Layton at first glance is a cartoony boring story game... but it, in fact, is filled with puzzles. ALL SORTS of puzzles! Playing five minutes into it got me hooked... and I knew it would become one of my favorite games on the DS. It is an adventure game with puzzles, murder, intrigue, mysteries... and great DS animation. Yes, animation.
Don't walk... RUN to get it. It is worth $30.
As for Myst and Riven... I love them both, but I can see why people don't...
For one thing, you are not told what to do. No rules, no goal. Nothing. So part of the game is trying to figure out what to do. That's actually not as hard as it may seem... it just takes time.
But Myst and Riven are both unforgiving in that they rarely tell you if you have done something right. You have to search and deduce... and many people have started Myst and never played too far into it for that reason. So I can understand being frustrated.
Luckilly, I LOVE puzzle games and am pretty good at them, and so I fell in love with the series. I have just started Myst III and was pleasantly surprised to find one of my favorite actors playing a role in it: Brad Dourif!
I would really suggest these games as well as they are thinking games that let you take your time and not rush. They're also fun games to play with others as you can all suggest ideas and wrap your minds around them.
To help you all play (those of you that never got too far out of frustration) I give you this help for MYST... without spoilers:
IDEA: You have found a strange book and have been transported to this new island. Inside of the library on the island are two books~ a red and blue one. Both tell you to find pages to add to them. There are other books that link to other worlds (called 'Ages') that you must find to get these red and blue pages... but you must find these books as they have been hidden around the island. Touch paintings, read journals, push buttons, be curious, and keep notes of everything you find. When something changes... look around. Something may be different and the island is small enough to discover even small differences without too much work.
The game journal I made during game play is below... but it is LOADED with spoilers.
I didn't know what I would need, so I left room for as many Ages as I could. You can see that I didn't need all of it. That would change with the Riven game.