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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Photos: Walking in the Rain

For the past 4 days now, it’s been raining all afternoon. There’s an epidemic of coughs and colds amongst students at school this week. Both students and lecturers are sucking down Fishermen’s Friend sweet like its Vidocine in Los Angeles. I’m having an annoying tickle in my throat myself.

Great... just great...

It’s nice actually, to finally be alone in the house. Of course, being young single Malay girl, I’m not allowed to housesit all by myself, no matter how many heavy-duty golf clubs I armed myself. Abang Arsenal comes to spent the night at the downstairs room

He doesn’t usually stay in, bachelor that he is, at times going out to mamak places, more so since it’s the football season on TV and we cancelled Astro sports channel months ago.

I think it’s going to rain again today. *siiiiiigh*

Rains always got me thinking of clean, cool thoughts. It air gets clean and refreshing, yet the sky is dull and overcast. When I was younger, in primary school, I would take an umbrella and just take a long stroll at the playground near my house.

In the rain. Alone.

Of course I got thrashed by my folks for doing a potentially little-girl-alone-in-the-rain-kidnap-her-now stunt but those were the days before the Nurin Alert. I like to walk a lot. I get fidgety if I don’t get out of the house.

Even now. Especially when it rains.

At school. Traffic gets heavy and half the students are rushing through the wet air and wet walks to get in time for classes. Others, like this fella here (who I won’t name, heh) is just waiting out the hours.

I couldn’t afford to stay. It was getting late and I want to go home. Okay, my real excuse is that when I walk in the rain, I rather do it alone. The world is getting so noisy but at that moment, I can hear my own thoughts.

Yes, I was soaked through. Just my luck to be wearing my bright-coloured shirt too (no, I won’t show you how see-through I became). But my glasses were definitely dotted with droplets. It’s times like these I wished I had tissues to wipe it (and an umbrella, to not get wet in the first place).

The journey home. I found myself singing David Usher’s Black Black Heart with the music all in my head...

Black black heart
why would you offer more
Why would you make it easier on me, to satisfy
I'm on fire
I'm rotting to the core
I'm eating all your kings and queens
All your sex and your diamonds

Haha, the garden sudah kena banjir... In some places, it can get right up to my ankles. The good thing about these continuing rains is that I didn’t have to remind myself to water the plants with my folks out gallivanting with their passports.

At least the fishes enjoy the rains. The biggest white-and-red dude on the bottom left is known as YB (Yang Berhormat or Yang Besar; either way, he’s a bully). They got really active, even when I wasn’t feeding them. Must be all that new fresh water.

In my room. My windows are closed. My wind chimes are silent... for now.

Games Review: Mystery Case Files, Madam Fate by Big Fish Games

Hehehehe, I can’t resist hidden objects games, can’t I?

Two reasons pertaining to yet another hidden objects genre game as a blog review is because firstly, I found that they really bring up blog traffic. Thanks to my 3 widgets (Feedjit, Nuffnang and MyBlogLog), the genre’s puzzles are some of the damn-est Help-Me-Google on the search count.

I get a hit on my game reviews at least twice a day. Got to love random strangers. They have a unique IP address for my Statcounter.

Well, let’s get started. Today’s blog entry is the review for the game I’ve cracked called Mystery Case Files: Madame Fate by one of the reigning lords of game developer and distributor, Big Fish Games.

The game, which we shall call MCFMF for short, is the fourth installment for an ever continuing tale of you, the player, solving literary messy cases on behalf of Merry Ol’ England.

From the previous MCF game, you left now-less-haunted-house of Ravenhearst to follow the call of help for Madame Fate’s, er, fate.

Mystery Case Files: Madam Fate

Yeah, sure-sure. Look, I only accept cash or credit card, not super-real-big-win-lottery numbers, okay?.

Madame Fate owns a crooked traveling carnival that looks to be on the brink of collapse but it’s her life, not her business, that’s bothering her to bother you. Her little shiny orb had just revealed that she’s going to die at the stroke of midnight!

Of course.

Well, some people just won’t die without a fight and fight sneakily she shall by using you to approach her suspects. As it turns out, from the mermaid to Fate’s fat son, all her employees are suspects to her foretold imminent death. Each has their own agenda to knock her lights out but it will be the All-Seeing Ball which will tell specifically the man with the smoking gun.

There are lots of fun rides in Fate’s carnival. Play at your own risk.

Your secret identity is safe, but you still have to play janitor.

Just like in every hidden objects game, you need to find various items, from as mundane as birds and bees to as bizarre as fixing up a few spots like turning on a green light or placing a feather in a hat.

That’s what made the MCF games so unique. Unlike other find-and-click-and-click-and-click-and-click-s’more techniques, this game requires you to complete a few non-repetitive tasks in other to get what the crystal ball is looking for.

You can also interrogate the members themselves too, but most as not as easy as this one.

Each carny member have their own agenda against Madame Fate.

Oh, I could have sand in my eyes and still see the ending coming in from a mile away. But MCFMF games wasn’t it! It was not until investigating the last two suspects that I was beginning to think Madame Fate’s fate correctly and thought, “Hey, that’s different.”

Still, it didn’t blow me away. Unlike The Vanishing Files, MCFMF’s storyline have no character development other than just watching TV-like of their midnight activities. However, like all previous MCF games, it all ends with a ‘To be continued...’

Methinks, is the best form for this game. There are some really original puzzles never seen before, or a totally new upgrade from old puzzles. I liked best was the Medicine Man and the Tattooed Man puzzles. They’re all quite challenging and I had to confess nooby-ness and surf for walkthroughs. *hehehe!*

There are also other little bits and pieces in the game that have no function in solving or aiding puzzle completion but they’re quite fun to click and see animated.

It’s not as pretty as the Spirit of Wandering game or the Mystery in London game, but unlike some few others, MCFMF really do hide their stuff instead of just chucking photo cut-outs in colour coordinated sections.

Nothing special actually, only that it’s one of the really hardest games to find the stated objects. Not remarkable but pretty nice. It’s the puzzles gameplay that are much more impressive, thank you.

Music and Sound Effects:
Often overlooked, Big Fish Games made this flaw as usual. I did like some of the special sound effects like that crazy laughter when you click certain characters during the puzzles, but overall, it didn’t affect me as a player and mostly I just turn it off.

See into the All-Seeing Ball... to fine more damn puzzles!

By solving the Ball’s riddles, you get to see the suspect’s final performance.

Duly recommend this game for all hidden object games out there. Just make sure you have a weekend to spare as because this is a timed game and you probably won’t be able to leave your PC or you might miss something! *hahaha!*

I’m definitely looking forward to the next MCF in the series but I think I can wait, no problem.

PS: A complete, step-by-step walkthrough for this game can be found at’s Tips and Tricks..

Downloads for this game can be found at Reflexive Arcade. If you want the cracked version, ask me nicely.

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