Every day we offer FREE licensed software you’d have to buy otherwise.

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal Giveaway

Game Giveaway of the day — The Mystery of the Crystal Portal

Join Nicole as she searches the globe on an exiting quest to find her father!
User rating: 22 (71%) 9 (29%) 20 comments

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal was available as a giveaway on August 28, 2022!

Today Giveaway of the Day
free today
Break into the taiga blizzard again now on the legendary Ural 4320 truck!

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

Embark on a brain-bending adventure that's full of unique Hidden Object fun! Journalist Nicole Rankwist has always been close to her archaeologist father, so when he goes missing, Nicole knows she has to find him! After all, he had apparently just made a discovery that could change the course of humanity. Join Nicole as she searches the globe on an eye-popping quest to find her father and discover The Mystery of the Crystal Portal.

System Requirements:

Windows XP/ Vista/ 7/ 8/ 10; CPU: 800 Mhz; RAM: 128 MB; DirectX: 7.0; Hard Drive: 86 MB





File Size:

81.6 MB



GIVEAWAY download basket

Plant flowers and fight with zombies to save your brain.
Gain access to online stores and manage licensed game copies.
Developed by Overwolf
A simulation game about the life of a truck driver.

Comments on The Mystery of the Crystal Portal

Thank you for voting!
Please add a comment explaining the reason behind your vote.

Here are a few tips for those who have trouble finding key objects and are therefore in despair, but still haven't given up completely: Click around wildly until some object sticks to your cursor. Then move it over the whole image until a key object appears. Place the simple object by clicking in the center of this key object. If it fits, it is automatically assigned correctly, otherwise the object jumps back to the found position and you have to continue searching as described.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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

I downloaded this game years ago. It was easy to play, one just searches the room to complete the main object on the quest. The ending is a bit of a downer but the overall game play was unique in this genre of HOGs. Great rainy day or weekend game.

Reply   |   Comment by Deborah1962  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

I had the same problem as many here. The hint button was useless, and the item in the microscope crashed the game every time.

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

Thought I'd download because there was enough contradiction in the reviews that I felt there might be something to explore. Yep!

I complained recently about a couple of adventure games where the logic of game play meant you were a slave to the hint button, or where you could only go so far with the hint system until you had to make an intuitive - or lucky - leap or even the hint system would fail you and you'd be stuck without referring to a walkthrough. I'm somewhat opposed to the walkthrough concept. It makes sense to an extent: no 2 people have the same set of experiences to draw on, making universal game development difficult. However, if you have to keep referring to a walkthrough, then I feel something's lacking in the game play. IMHO. Here, I wasn't a slave to the hint system, not yet anyway, but it required a little Sherlock Holmesian pouring meticulously over the evidence to try and determine how the game is structured.

I mean, the problem doesn't seem to be with the logic of the gameplay, but with the mechanics of it. Actually, there is help and answers here, but it's clunky, not always evident. Here's what I've figured out - these may be incomplete - I only completed Japan, and I thought it best to write these clarifications before going any further, but, here are my impressions:

There are some tutorial clues that pop up occasionally, in the character interaction scenes, and the journal. Also, there's actually a basic help screen, though well hidden. If you click the question mark above the menu button, it will come up. Also, it's different when you're in the journal, you'll get different instructions by clicking on that question mark above the menu button, relevant to using the journal. When you get to a country, the journal will have a post-it like note with a name, or will have a photo, and when you mouse over it, it will tell you how many of the different types of items you have to find in that location. Also, it acts as a transport map. Click on a location within a country, when it becomes available, and go there.

The basic instructions it brings up in any of the actual locations in a country define the basic "finding" concepts. 1. Your looking for "key objects" - not meaning a key that unlocks, but meaning key as in "important". These are the items that have the pictures of the other objects, "normal objects", whose black & white drawings you need to match to the real objects, then click on those real objects, and drag them over to the key object and left-click. You don't have to be directly over the object your matching, at least partially inside the big "key object" circle works better. In Japan, for example, there are 5 of these, represented by 5 dull question marks on the very bottom. The "normal objects" have absolutely no significance other than to complete the "key objects". You initially find these "key objects" by mousing over the scene until the cursor becomes a hand. You don't need to click, mousing will do the job. Then you click and get a little circle with the drawings of "normal objects" that "key object" needs.

Another thing that I believe causes confusion is that the game spoonfeeds you these "key objects". It will only let you open 2 or 3 at a time, and the other hands don't appear until you get 1 or 2 completed. Also, if you want to look behind one of the key objects circles, clicking on the little red upside down arrow at the top of the "key object" circle will close it. And you can drag object to it whether you leave it open or not. If you leave it closed, it will open when you drag the "normal object" over the "key object" circle and will close as soon as you left click to place the object inside. Unless you leave it locked open, of course. Depends on the quality of you memory for objects.

When you complete a "key object" it will do something: open, in which case there's something you need in it, disappear, which means there's something you need behind it, or just light up or smoke or sparkle or give off mystical symbols, which means "nothing to see here", though one set of mystical symbols was echoed on another part of the screen where something I needed appeared, so double check that. At the end of the country quest there's a puzzle, and that's the 3rd set of things you need to look for in the HOS, and that's also the main quest for that country. In Japan, it's a set of "scale weights" you'll use later when you get to the puzzle. But, there's also 1 other thing you need to know in your search. Sometimes, "normal objects" are inside something, and THOSE are what the game means by "container objects", whether some of the "key objects" are a type of container with something in them. For purposes of the games not overly clear use of language, "container objects" just mean wastebaskets, or little shack like single rooms, or barrels, or whatever, that hold a "normal object", used to finish the requirements of key objects. Btw, the game spoonfeeds you these too. You probably won't see the "container" marker - more on that marker below - until you have opened the "key object" who has a "normal object" or 2 hidden inside a "container" somewhere else in the scene. These mechanics are not necessarily clear as mud, but maybe only clear as swamp water. lol.

And, then there is the occasional pure language mistake. The help description - and the help drawing - says that container objects are found not by the cursor changing into a hand, but into a magnifying glass. Not when I do it, it doesn't! I get an hourglass, similar to the windows hourglass, but not rotating. So, if you see either one or the other "glass" appear, that's the "container". Also, as someone said in a comment somewhere, when the monk comes up to me when I'm on the "dock" in Japan, he says I've found all the weights - the puzzle pieces - but, I haven't. I'm 1 short. It might be that you can go the journal and then to the secret place by click on it's photo, if it's even there yet, but, I didn't try. I finished the task at the dock - get a ladder after you've found all the normal objects there plus 2 weights - then finished at the temple: I needed the ladder to find 1 normal object for an incomplete "key object" at the Temple (and still not completed after I used the ladder and found that 1 normal object), then completed the "key object" and found the last weight. One other note: the normal objects pretty specifically match the drawings - "looks similar" will probably be wrong, except that sometimes either the orientation - vertical vice horizontal, or a different diagonal slant, or difference in size - may distort the look a bit.

Hope that "book" I just wrote helps. My bottom line on this game is that the decoding you have to do is not so much on the adventure itself nearly as much as it is on the game mechanics. I'm going to keep it, but the kind of person who can get enjoyment out of this game is the kind that will just persevere: meaning just mousing and looking and mousing and looking and mousing and looking until you find the next object or clue to the game mechanics, in terms of what it wants you to do next. Not in terms of an adventure challenge, but in terms of what direction the game is trying to nudge you into next. Definitely not for everyone, but doesn't seem too bad if you can solve "The Mystery of the Game with the Vague Mechanics". (For many though, that may not be "Elementary, Watson".) Thanks GGOTD, ToomKy, Artogon, Whiterabbit, and helpful commentators here.

Reply   |   Comment by watcher13  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

I just want to thank everyone who takes the time to comment on these games -- especially to tell us about the problems you find. Knowing about them saves us valuable time and huge frustration! Many thanks!

Reply   |   Comment by M. Aronson  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

Strongly recommend reading reviews from previous time it was given away. Here are my own notes from that time:

"completed up until the last scene where it shuts down when I place an item where it goes. The scene itself doesn't even match the one pictured in the online walkthroughs. Crazy hard as well with completely invisible objects. Giving this game one star would be generous."

Running Win 10 here btw.

Reply   |   Comment by Mark  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)

Works fine on win 10 and win 11.
Do NOT have Full screen or you will not find the items.
Some items are very hard to find. At the beginning I had hard time to find out what I should do... but it went better and better after awhile.

Reply   |   Comment by agno  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)


I said too much... After coming to the fathers room it couldn't find the items and then when I found the lens it shut down the whole game. Have tried to restart several times with no luck :(

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

I presume (please let me know!) this is one of those "pictures" HOGs?

If so, then thanks for the kind offer, but I'll pass. That style of HOG, especially the "collect all these things" type, which today's GGotD is, drive me crazy! I just can't seem to 'get on' with them. :)

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

Disgusted that the previously reported issue with the Hint button not working STILL exists, with no solution. Additionally, when trying to change compatibility settings, I get that it can't find "resources.xml". After all the comments a few years ago about these issues, you'd think they would have either come up with a workaround or not offered it again. Uninstalled reluctantly, as I was SO ready for another HOG! :)

Reply   |   Comment by neme  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)

After installing the game I noticed I had to adjust the DPI-settings to get a good screen view. Here are the instructions from Microsoft website to do that:
"Select Display > Change the size of text, apps, and other items, and then adjust the slider for each monitor. Right-click the application, select Properties, select the Compatibility tab, and then select the Disable display scaling on high DPI settings check box".

Reply   |   Comment by tiscrea © - The Netherlands  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+14)

Start from: Right-click the application...

Reply   |   Comment by tiscrea © - The Netherlands  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+10)

Can't work out how to get full screen... What do I change the size of the text, apps, etc to in order to run the game properly please? Currently set to 1366 x 768. Thanks for your help.

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

DAD, When I first started to play the game, the screen was too big for my monitor, so I used the DPI-scaling option. I checked both boxes at the DPI-scaling section. I never had the problem o f not getting to full screen. If checking both DPI-scaling boxes doesn't work for you, maybe you can you could try "the "select display" part first (my first comment)?

Reply   |   Comment by tiscrea © - The Netherlands  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

First time : https://game.giveawayoftheday.com/the-mystery-of-the-crystal-portal/

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal was also available as a giveaway on January 26, 2020.

User rating:+ 22 (85%), - 4 (15%)

Missed it then... ;-)

Reply   |   Comment by Johan Ente  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+7)

This hidden object game seems to be very much broken. If someone can suggest a way to progress where the post item is I would appreciate it. I only found a couple of the objects its looking for and struggling to find the others in the scene.

Game is very slow and sluggish and also the hint button does not work as its intended as I did not see indications on what to find when clicking it. Perhaps this is an unfinished game?

Reply   |   Comment by sailorbear510 aka Jason  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+14)

sailorbear510 aka Jason,
It was the same the last time it was given away and I just deleted it after several tries of not getting forward (and not finding a walkthrough I guess).
Sad they just give away the same faulty version.

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

sailorbear510 aka Jason, I have the same problem. I get a ding sound when clicking the Hint button, but nothing changes on the screen.

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

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal
In Brief
The Mystery of the Crystal Portal is a hidden object game originally released via Real Arcade (now part of Gamehouse) during the summer of 2008.

It was originally given away on January 26, 2020 where it received a positive 85% from 26 votes with 25 comments which you can read HERE.

Embark on a brain-bending adventure that's full of unique Hidden Object fun! Journalist Nicole Rankwist has always been close to her archaeologist father, so when he goes missing, Nicole knows she has to find him! After all, he had apparently just made a discovery that could change the course of humanity. Join Nicole as she searches the globe on an eye-popping quest to find her father and discover The Mystery of the Crystal Portal.
Reference accessed HERE. Jan 26th 2020
The Game:
The Mystery of the Crystal Portal, centres on journalist Nicole Rankvist as she receives a strange note from her archaeologist father, Robert, saying that he’s discovered an artefact that has the power to change humanity. When Robert goes missing, Nicole must find pieces of the Crystal Portal key and retrace Robert’s steps by – you guessed it – searching for hidden objects!
Nicole’s journey takes her to five exotic locations, including Japan, the Swiss Alps, the Mayan ruins of Guatemala, and wintry Russia. Each location is broken into two or three scenes where you must search for "normal" objects (the usual random assortment of items such as vase, bucket and saw), story items that will help you advance (like a jug of gasoline to power a generator), container items (more on these in a moment) and "puzzle" items like gears and tile fragments that unlock the final stage of each round, which is always a puzzle game of some sort.

The container items that represent The Mystery of the Crystal Portal‘s major game play twist. Once you find and click on one of these special items, it will open up to reveal a second set of items that you need to find, click on and drag into the container in order to complete it.
Certain containers, when completed, will move or disintegrate to reveal additional objects underneath. Some objects have to be found and used in other scenes, such as finding a can of gasoline to power a generator to light up a darkened cave for you to explore.
The containers are a neat idea, except that you have no idea what the containers look like beforehand because, unlike most hidden object games, you aren’t shown a silhouette or picture of what you’re looking for – it’s only after you’ve found and clicked on the container that little images appear of the objects you’re supposed to find and put inside.
In other words, finding each container involves clicking around randomly until your mouse cursor changes shape to indicate that the object can be clicked on – and then you know that you’ve found a container. Strangely, a little icon of the container shows up only after you’ve found it, and not before.

There’s also the feeling that the story and the sequence of events you’re meant to follow in the game isn’t quite air-tight. For example, when I picked up the last stone in a series of stones to find, Nicole exclaimed that the "last piece of stone was behind the fireplace!" when actually the last stone I picked up was on a shelf. On another occasion, I was told to find matches in one scene so that I could light a fire in another scene to get a better look at a crest at the back of the fireplace. But when I found the matches and returned to the room, the fire was burning but I clicked on the crest and nothing happened. I had to find all the items in a lamp container before the fireplace crest became clickable. (Ok…)
These foibles are easier to overlook owing to the fact that there are no time limits or penalties for random clicking, and unlimited hints as long as you’re prepared to wait for the hint bar to refill (although sometimes hints reveal items that go into containers you haven’t found yet, which isn’t very helpful).
The game has good graphics in its favour, including beautiful scrolling panoramas that introduce each new location. It’ s evident that a lot of care was taken to place items in the scenes that look like they belong there instead of completely random stock photo clutter (in other words, you won’t see a Statue of Liberty or Eiffel Tower amongst the Mayan ruin, thankfully.

The verdict: The Mystery of the Crystal Portal is a good, though not stellar, hidden object game whose laid back set of rules is sure to provide a relaxing experience free of the stress of time limits and penalties for random clicking or using up hints.
Edited reference accessed HERE. Originally posted by Erin Bell July 2008. Reposted by Whiterabbit-uk Jan 26th 2020, and again on the 26th August 2022
Videos and Walkthroughs of The Mystery of the Crystal Portal:
You can see several in-game videos of game play HERE, HERE, HERE (Deutsche), HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE. You can find written walkthroughs to help if you get stuck so HERE and HERE



If you miss today's game giveaway you can always get the game via TooMky Games 24/7 HERE; or If you prefer to purchase the game you can get it HERE via Big Fish Games.
Problems getting the game to work:
If you're having problems installing or activating or getting The Mystery of the Crystal Portal to work please visit the FAQ's Thread HERE

Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+18)

Whiterabbit-uk, Missed last time. Pass this time since even w/ pretty graphx the whole HOG idea is faint to me lately. Appreciate offer and if having any issues go to the link to prior GOTD and read the 25 comments. Seems to be lots issues @ DPI, compat, etc. Worse case one user played with compat settings and lost game progress to that point forcing a brand new start over. Never a good thing for linear game/story.

Reply   |   Comment by beergas  –  Last month  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)
Add a comment

iPhone app giveaways »

Maha Laxmi Mantra With Audio Giveaway
Listen to Maha Laxmi Mantra.
$3.99 ➞ free today
BGH - Bear's Good Habits Giveaway
Create a good habit with Tom!
$0.99 ➞ free today
Om Namah Shivay - Listen To Aarti and Mantra Audio Giveaway
Om Namah Shivay. You can listen to Om Namah Shivay aarti dedicated to Lord Shiva with this app.
$4.99 ➞ free today
The Busy Lumberjack Giveaway
This is a fun and engaging puzzle game.
$1.99 ➞ free today
Easy Auto Call Recorder Number Giveaway
Easy Auto Call Recorder allows to record any phone call easily.
$2.99 ➞ free today

Android app giveaways »

Merge Mon VIP - Idle Puzzle RPG Giveaway
Merge your monsters with simple puzzles and create stronger monsters.
$0.99 ➞ free today
PixelCraft Space Shooter Giveaway
PixelCraft space shooter is a unique simple game to play in your causal time.
$9.49 ➞ free today
Fire Free Fall Pro Giveaway
A process-generated walking and exploration simulator.
$2.99 ➞ free today
Famous Quotes Guessing Game PRO Giveaway
Play entertaining guessing game or browse through hundreds of best famous quotes of all time!
$1.99 ➞ free today
Trivia Master - Quiz Games Giveaway
Trivia master is a multiple choice quiz game.
$4.49 ➞ free today