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Howlville The Dark Past Giveaway
$9.99
EXPIRED

Game Giveaway of the day — Howlville The Dark Past

Reveal the mystery of the secret experiment and find Rachel’s father!
$9.99 EXPIRED
User rating: 33 (89%) 4 (11%) 14 comments

Howlville The Dark Past was available as a giveaway on August 15, 2020!

Today Giveaway of the Day
$0.99
free today
Do not allow evil spirits to get to you.

Exclusive offer from Giveaway of the Day and MyPlayCity! No third-party advertising and browser add-ons!

Discover the secret of Rachel's past in Howlville: The Dark Past! Many years ago an artifact was found in a mine near the small town of Howlville. The government asked Dr. Joseph and a group of scientists to examine it. Something went wrong and the experiments were halted and classified. The town closed off. Since then nobody knows what happened to Dr. Joseph. Fifteen years later his daughter Rachel is on the verge of solving the mystery, but somebody is doing everything possible to keep her from succeeding. Help find Rachel's father and save the world from the looming catastrophe!

System Requirements:

Windows XP/ Vista/ 7/ 8/ 10; CPU: 2.0 GHz; RAM: 1024 MB; DirectX: 9.0; Hard Drive: 1285 MB

Publisher:

MyPlayCity

Homepage:

https://www.bigfishgames.com/games/7265/howlville-the-dark-past/?pc

File Size:

359 MB

Price:

$9.99

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Comments on Howlville The Dark Past

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#12

wow, gave away games are getting old.
I have a version of this game from 2012 ..... :-O

Reply   |   Comment by voorbijganger  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#11

Have we gotten this already on another date?

Reply   |   Comment by Anu  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#10

21:46 15/8/2020

Howlville The Dark Past was available as a giveaway on December 28, 2019!

Reply   |   Comment by JEDIGEG  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#9

Seems quiet here today so I thought I'd help out. This the third time this game has been given away here, the first on Oct 14/18 and the second on Dec 28/19 when it received 36 thumbs-up out of 40.

Quoting a portion of Whiterabbit-uk's review from that second giveaway:
"In Brief
Howlville: The Dark Past is an adventure hidden object puzzle game with some excellent mini games spread liberally throughout the game. Most puzzles link with the hidden object scenes as opposed to being completely separate from them. This was originally given away last year 14th October 2018, where it received a positive 88% from 45 votes with 10 comments which you can see accessed HERE (https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/howlville-the-dark-past)

Conclusion:
Simply enjoyable is a good way to describe Howlville: The Dark Past. The game doesn't veer too far in any genre-defined direction, allowing it to maintain its HOG likeability without alienating any type of player. It's got game play where it counts, and both the in-game puzzles and mini-games and are some of the most satisfying puzzles around! The downside is the poor storyline.
An 8 out of 10 thumbs up from me and a game well worth downloading."

You can see more here:
https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/howlville-the-dark-past-2

I have the game from 2018 and though it has been awhile since I played it, I recall enjoying it and agreeing with that assessment.

There ia a walk through at the BFG site for anyone interested:
https://www.bigfishgames.com/blog/walkthroughs/howlville-the-dark-past.html

Reply   |   Comment by jboy  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+9)

Oh wow, when I wrote this this morning, there were no comments so I must look daft. :/ I guess they were all awaiting moderation. Oh well. Thanks for the giveaway nonetheless. ;-)

Reply   |   Comment by jboy  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

jboy, I had the same problem - all I could see was my own comment (#2 further down)

Reply   |   Comment by Ros  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#8

Previously on GOTD 12/28/19
game.giveawayoftheday[.]com/howlville-the-dark-past-2/
& 10/14/18
game.giveawayoftheday[.]com/howlville-the-dark-past/

Reply   |   Comment by mike  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)
#7

I remember this as a previous GGOTD, but none the worse for that!

From what I recall, it was an enjoyable HOG: the usual mixture of wacky objects to find (and use!), groups of "bits" to find, plus decent mini-games as I recall.

If you're a HOG fan and haven't played this one, I think you'll enjoy it. It does have a slightly creepy story line, but sadly most HOGs seem to be "dark" in one way or another. Maybe that's what has proved to sell best?

Personally, I like a lighter theme, or even a murder mystery to solve, but without becoming cloying or schmaltzy. I'm sure there's a happy medium to be struck somewhere!!!

Reply   |   Comment by Cad Delworth  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)
#6

It seems to me, this game was given out earlier this year.

Reply   |   Comment by Robert  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (-1)
#5

Pleased to see today's offer. It's one I lost on my kaput external HDD.

Steam reviews average 7/10, so it looks like at least, it'd be entertaining. Cheers for another lovely HOG. *hugs for Whiterabbit-uk*

Stay safe, everyone.

Reply   |   Comment by Dana  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)
#4

Has been given away twice previously. Read the comments here:

October 14, 2018:
https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/howlville-the-dark-past/

December 28, 2019:
https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/howlville-the-dark-past-2/

Reply   |   Comment by ExGOTDUser  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#3

prev. given away on 14 oct 2018

Reply   |   Comment by Johan Ente  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#2

This was previously given away on 14th October 2018, when it got 35 (88%) positive ratings.

Here is a link to that page, which includes whiterabbit's excellent review of the game:
https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/howlville-the-dark-past/

Reply   |   Comment by Ros  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)
#1

Howlville: The Dark Past
In Brief
Howlville: The Dark Past is an adventure hidden object puzzle game with some excellent mini games spread liberally throughout the game. Most puzzles link with the hidden object scenes as opposed to being completely separate from them.
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Installation:
Howlville: The Dark Past downloads to a 359 MB zip file that unzips to three files, (a setup.gcd security wrapper, the set-up file and a read me). To install Howlville: The Dark Past click on the orange key file labelled set up and not the setup.gcd file. Those with multiple hard drives can save games on any drive they wish, just change the default installation path. The newly installed game is 1.22 GB in size. The game installs to the following path by default, but can be changed by the user if you prefer:
C:\Program Files (x86)\MyPlayCity.com\Howlville The Dark Past
Four shortcuts are installed to the desktop, three of which can be safely deleted (Play Online Games, MyPlayCity Games and shortcuts to a free online game which vary each week). Also, if you don't like icons installed to the quick launch task bar, make sure you uncheck the box when the ''additional tasks'' window appears (after the Select Start Menu Folder window)
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Introduction:
Discover the secret of Rachel's past in Howlville: The Dark Past! Many years ago an artifact was found in a mine near the small town of Howlville. The government asked Dr. Joseph and a group of scientists to examine it. Something went wrong, and the experiments were halted and classified. The town closed off. Since then nobody knows what happened to Dr. Joseph. Fifteen years later his daughter Rachel is on the verge of solving the mystery, but somebody is doing everything possible to keep her from succeeding. Help find Rachel's father and save the world from the looming catastrophe!
Reference accessed HERE 14th October 2018, reposted 14th August 2020
The Game:
Review 1:
Released in 2012, on first glance, Howlville: The Dark Secret is perfectly packaged to imitate its long line of ancestors who’ve thrilled audiences with their haunted houses, car crashes, and mysterious towns—or at least bombarded them into a numb acceptance of commercial standards. But from the title screen forward, Howlville distinguishes itself from the gloomy flock with a unique twist on the tried-and-true gameplay of hidden-object games. Instead of puzzles and hidden objects existing as separate entities; they’ve nested puzzles and tons of interaction into each hidden-object scenes, creating a very different pace and strategy for familiar mechanics.
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The game opens predictably for the genre—you’ve escaped a mental institution and you’re driving a stolen vehicle down some forbidden highway in search of an even more forbidden town. Rachel, the protagonist, reveals in an intimate tone that she is looking for her father, one of two scientists who disappeared in Howlville years ago while investigating an artifact. Eventually, the other scientist is established as the antagonist, but the how’s and why’s in Howlville are never quite fleshed out enough to matter. It reminded me of older adventure games where the programmers would hire a writer after the fact to “add some story” to the gameplay. And although the cutscenes were written with care, but the journal and in-game text could’ve benefited from some judicious editing.
Where N-Tri Studios’ first game really shines is in the gameplay—a major achievement just out of the chute. There are five chapters, each consisting of limited locations, so you’re only moving between three scenes at most, making it impossible to get lost. This approach works here because most of the needed items are garnered from intense hidden-object scenes that are puzzles in and of themselves.
Most scenes featured tiered levels of interaction: the first was moving objects to find other objects, the second was using an object in the scene to open/unlock another object to find other objects, and the third level was solving actual puzzles within the scene, such as a jigsaw or Rubik’s cube, to find an object. Each scene was a real challenge and I found myself scratching my head more than I would with some “real” adventure games.
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Also impressive was the game’s use of monitor real estate. The HUD was clean and simple, and the in-game text was restricted to small text boxes that appeared when your pointer paused on a hotspot, allowing the eyes to give their full attention to the hand-drawn scenes. The music was about as aesthetically pleasing as a looped audio track can be, the sound effects appropriate, and the voice over, although scant, was well done.
But sometimes a player can have too much of a good thing. With all the layers of interaction, the hidden-object scenes become major undertakings that could last ten minutes or longer—especially if they contain two or more puzzles. (Be forewarned: the Skip button takes two minutes to charge.) Although most of the interactions were logical, some required leaps and bounds of faith that two such objects should go together. At times the length of time in a hidden-object scene detracted from the overall adventure and would’ve detracted from the story if there’d been one. And just as I’d breathe a sigh of relief that I’d completed all that puzzling, I’d find another active hidden-object scene in the same location!
As a standard edition, Howlville: The Dark Secret knocks it out of the park and deserves to be played on novelty factor alone. Whether you consider yourself a puzzle gamer or a hidden-object gamer, you’ll find plenty to love in N-Tri Studios’ gameplay mash up. And if you’re looking for a hardcore challenge, play the game on Expert mode—you’ll carry out thousands of interactions without a single glint!
Reference accessed HERE original review by
Keely Alexander on Jul 11, 2012; Edited and reposted by Whiterabbit-uk 14th Oct 2018 and again 14th August 2020.
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Review 2:
Howlville: The Dark Past is a lightly-flavored science fiction-themed hidden object adventure game from N-Tri Studio. Featuring a balanced mix of puzzle solving, item hunting, and adventuring, Howlville manages to be a hidden object game without feeling like a rehash of the games that came before it, touching on common elements found in the genre but focusing intently on smart puzzles that really challenge the player. The result is something light and casual, recognizable but still different enough to offer mounds of enjoyment.
The protagonist Rachel lost her father when she was a child, and she's been searching for him her entire life. Gaining access to some "secret archives", she learned he was one of two scientists investigating a strange artifact in the town of Howlville. Something went wrong, though, and the town has since been declared off-limits, its location hidden from the public. Rachel eventually found the classified city only to be thrown in a mental institution shortly afterwards. Now she has escaped, and as the game begins, she's on her way to Howlville. As you probably guessed, things only get weirder from this point on, what with all the mad scientistry and whatnot…...
The game is laid out in a series of small sections blocked by puzzles that require multiple steps to complete. As you explore each area, you'll pick up several items to keep in your inventory, most of which have logical uses later in the game. You'll also complete a number of mini-games to gain access to new areas, such as completing fuses to light up rooms, or gathering certain numbers of unusual items so you can open locked boxes, cabinets, and the like.
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The game sticks with the established hidden object formula, but it does so without sinking too deeply into it. The story features a smattering of elements we've all seen before, such as mysteriously vanishing grandparents, a protagonist from a mental institution, and a dark, semi-haunted town to explore. But Howlville is almost parodical in nature, lightly skimming the surface of the hidden object genre just as an excuse to deliver a series of wonderfully-constructed puzzles.
The story and setting are simple but interesting, but the visuals do manage to stand out as being crisp and easy to see. The game doesn't support widescreen, however, which is a bit of a shame seeing as how it looks so good. Most of the time you'll be so focused on the unique mini-games and strange puzzles you won't be thinking about things like aspect ratios or black bars on the side of your screen.
Reference accessed HERE original review by JohnB, July 8, 2012; Edited and reposted by Whiterabbit-uk 14th Oct 2018 and again 14th August 2020.
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Other Reviews, Walkthroughs and Videos of Howlville: The Dark Past:
You can see community reviews of Howlville: The Dark Past HERE (go to bottom of the page) & HERE (mainly positive), plus forum comments, suggestions and help HERE. You can also see game play videos of Howlville: The Dark Past HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE and some walkthroughs HERE & HERE
Conclusion:
Simply enjoyable is a good way to describe Howlville: The Dark Past. The game doesn't veer too far in any genre-defined direction, allowing it to maintain its HOG likeability without alienating any type of player. It's got game play where it counts, and both the in-game puzzles and mini-games and are some of the most satisfying puzzles around! The downside is the poor storyline.
An 8 out of 10 thumbs up from me and a game well worth downloading.
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If you miss today's game giveaway you can always get the game free via MyPlayCity 24/7 HERE; or If you prefer to purchase the game you can get it directly from Big Fish Games HERE or Steam HERE. You can also get it as a bundle via Steam with three other HOG’s (Crossroad Mysteries: The Broken Deal, Ashley Clark: Secret of the Ruby & Ashley Clark: The Secrets of the Ancient Temple) and with 30% off at the moment HERE
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Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+9)
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