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    $4.35 list($29.99)
    1. The Incredible Machine: Even More
    $39.99 $38.86
    2. Board Game Trio: Scrabble, Monopoly,
    $29.99 $27.67
    3. Learn to Play Chess with Fritz
    4. Chessmaster 9000 (Mac)
    $59.99 list($9.99)
    5. Return of the Incredible Machine
    $19.99 $7.29
    6. Chemicus
    $29.99 $25.97
    7. Learn To Play Chess With Fritz
    8. Scrabble (Mac)
    9. Myst 3: Exile
    $29.95 list($19.99)
    10. Emperor's Mahjong (Mac)
    $24.99 $21.02
    11. Big Bang Board Games (Mac)
    $19.99 $17.81
    12. Burning Monkey Mahjong (Mac)
    $5.89 list($19.99)
    13. Hoyle Puzzle Games 2003
    $8.86 list($19.99)
    14. Hoyle Kids Games 2002
    15. Kasparov Chessmate (Mac)
    16. MACPLAY Bejeweled & Alchemy
    17. Chessmaster 6000 (Mac)
    18. Monopoly (Mac)
    $19.99 list()
    19. Riddle Of The Sphinx (Mac)
    $9.36 list($29.95)
    20. SIERRA Hoyle Puzzle Games 2003

    1. The Incredible Machine: Even More Contraptions
    list price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005KB3J
    Catlog: Software
    Publisher: Sierra
    Sales Rank: 110
    Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Review

    This fantastic program will have your brain working as hard as a mandrill on a conveyer belt with bananas dangling in front of it. Don't worry, we'll explain. The Incredible Machine: Even More Contraptions gives players dozens of tools that perform an action: balls that bounce, cats that chase (and don't bounce), pulleys, ropes, generators, and yes, mandrill baboons on conveyer belts, bananas a-dangle in front of them. Then players are given a problem to solve with all of this crazy energy. Here's an example: in one puzzle called "Wood is Good," players must get three balls into a box, make wooden toast, and wood-smoke a hunk of gouda cheese for a mouse. Among the tools available to accomplish this task are a bike pump and an antigravity pad. And this is one of the easy puzzles.

    There are 250 gizmos to build here, some designed for single players and some designed for head-to-head puzzling competition. There is also a field where players can design their own Rube Goldberg Machine from scratch. The vast amount of projects and their complexity make this a program with staying power. Mercifully, there is a tutorial that takes rookies and right-brainers in hand. Players can choose four levels of difficulty: easy, which is quite challenging; to expert, which is insane. Mitigating the challenge factor is a function that turns the cursor into a question mark, and allows players to inspect gadget elements and get in-depth information about what each object and surface does.

    This game does a great job graphically. The well-rendered objects all perform as they ought, and form never hinders function. A thoughtful extra is a place where mad scientists can mess with their invention's appearance and background music: nice final touches for folks who want to take their custom-built games online to challenge others who are addicted to The Incredible Machine. This program's biggest strength is that it manages to put a humorous and creative spin on physics and engineering. They're not just giving you levers and weights to work with, they're giving you bottle rockets and alligators. A final wonderful point: there is no "right way" to build your contraption. If you scrabble something together that achieves the goal, it's right, no matter if you used the antigravity pad on the cat or on the bowling ball. No age rating given; we recommend ages 8 and up. --Anne Erickson ... Read more

    Reviews (9)

    5-0 out of 5 stars I love it! It's a great thinking game!
    This game is soooooooo 3D!
    You won't find silly cartoons stick poeple etc in this game!
    I love making my own contraptions and letting my mom play!
    If you want your kid to now a lot about physics then this is a great game!
    It has a lot of new stuff like a monkey and a jack in the box.
    It keeps all the old contraptions the same so don't worry about losing contraptions in the old game that you liked.
    The gears are made easyer so you don't need to take them out then put them back to get them working unlike in the first game.
    It is very compatiple with most computers I heard it works on Mac and I had a Windows me wich it worked on and now I have a XP and it works even better on that.
    This game is not like most games that you complete in weeks, months, days, or even one day this game takes years!
    But it's not too hard so you won't need to wory about not beeing able to complete one contraption.
    The tutorial level is to get started and to learn the basics.
    The easy level is to get you to understand the controls and to get your brain runing and any other stuff it also gets you better at reading the real hints and knowing those things that might trick you like extra parts.
    This game is a great buy!
    But there is some things like harming animals but what I do is say thay are just robots.

    5-0 out of 5 stars 5 Year Old Loves it!
    We got this game for my five year old son thinking it would be a great game to do together. That is an understatement! He is actually spending hours doing and completing contraptions on his own and is up to the harder levels. Definitely not a game for the mechanically uninclined but not as difficult as a previous review stated. My son is actually helping ME complete them. Tons of fun and learning!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great program and runs on Mac!
    It's a very fun game for kids or adults. It allows you to build Rube Goldberg-like contraptions on your computer, and then watch them in action. You can also "solve" existing (partially built) contraptions by figuring out what pieces to put where to make it accomplish a specified goal. And you can build contraptions for other people to solve. Very cool!

    There's little to criticize about it. The directions aren't as clear as they could be (typical: they describe how to do things instead of *showing* you) but you'll catch on quickly, since its very simple, and anyone who has used a computer will understand their cartoon-like interface (take normal computer widgets and make them big and cartoon-like and colorful: take a look at the screen shots to see what I mean). So if you have very young kids who haven't used the computer before, you might want to play it and let them watch: they'll catch on quickly. My first kid is still 4 weeks away, but I still can't wait to play this with him: we'll both enjoy it.

    Another criticism is that you have a very small space in which to build the contraptions, so they can't be as big as your screen (unless I just didn't find this option). That is annoying and limiting, but it's still lots of fun.

    The level of reality is cartoon-like, fitting the Rube Goldberg theme (many of Rube's contraptions wouldn't actually work because everything wouldn't fall perfectly into place) but that's good, of course.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Save your money
    This game is very difficult (even the easy level.) It has a lot of bugs. Clicking Help on the main screen freezes my computer. The objects are difficult to manipulate when they overlap anything. Everything has to be in perfect alignment for the puzzle to be solved, which is very difficult to do. I am returning it to Sierra for a refund.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent thinking game
    This is a good, clean game that will provide hours upon hours of entertainment. It has a lot of puzzles at various difficulty levels that make it fun for beginners and those looking for a challenge. The game is very addicting, guaranteeing that you'll get your money's worth out of it. An excellent way to exercise your brain and have fun at the same time. ... Read more

    2. Board Game Trio: Scrabble, Monopoly, Risk 2 (Mac)
    list price: $39.99
    our price: $39.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0006FZUIQ
    Catlog: Software
    Manufacturer: MacSoft
    Sales Rank: 582
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    3. Learn to Play Chess with Fritz and Chesster (Mac)
    list price: $29.99
    our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000DK573
    Catlog: Software
    Publisher: Viva Media
    Sales Rank: 572
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • Explore the kingdom and discover 7 arcade-style games
    • Explanations on everything from chess basics to master strategies
    • Experience the Intelligym, a training ground for future chess pros
    • Designed with highly-rated chess software
    • Suitable for players of all levels

    4. Chessmaster 9000 (Mac)
    list price: $39.99
    our price: $39.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000VMIM2
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Feral Interactive
    Sales Rank: 1974
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • Smart, popular chess software
    • Learn how to play like a master
    • Incredible 3-D sets, boards, and backgrounds
    • Tons of features to improve learning
    • For 1 or 2 players

    5. Return of the Incredible Machine / Even More Incredible Machines (Jewel Case)
    list price: $9.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000078COS
    Catlog: Software
    Publisher: Vivendi Universal
    Sales Rank: 1819
    Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (3)

    5-0 out of 5 stars 6 year old is fascinated by this program!
    Our six-year-old and his four-year-old brother have spent hours with this program. They love creating their own contraptions. We often hear them laughing with glee about the funny chain of events that they have created. The program looked complicated at first, but it has a very good set of tutorial challenges which teach you about how the various components work (gears, lazers, mandrils on conveyor belts, vials of nitroglycerine, etc.). Our six-year-old is now able to solve most of these challenges without any adult help. Not every child will enjoy this program, but if you have a youngster who is intrigued by technology and how things work, give this program a try. You may be surprised about how much they can learn from it at a young age.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Delightful Brain Teaser
    With me being a fan of Sierra and the original DOS version of The Incredible Machine, I had to get this one. I was not disappointed. With many new gadgets, better graphics, and fun animations, I was as pleased with this version as I was with the original. There are tons of puzzles to keep your brain working well into the night - and beyond! Puzzle fans will really like this game.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Best game ever
    The game is one of the best game that has been ever made. The goal of the game is to build machines. A'm sure ypu will love this game ... Read more

    6. Chemicus
    list price: $19.99
    our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006JL48
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Viva Media
    Sales Rank: 1233
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Product Description

    Journey to the other side of reality, to a virtual city shrouded in secrecy. Welcome to Chemicus, a land where scientific knowledge from the beginning of time is protected and wields sacred powers. You play as an accidental intruder transported to Chemicus by an ancient amulet. Your unintended presence has threatened the tranquility of this virtual city, and it's up to you--if you dare--to restore harmony before it's too late.

    In Chemicus: Journey to the Other Side players gain knowledge and use their intelligence to solve challenging riddles and unlock the city's darkest secrets. Take up the quest for ancient science truths and discover powerful tools; explore science facts and gather essential resources; experiment with chemical elements and discover the ultimate power. Chemicus awaits your return with stunning 3-D movies, riveting animation, more than 2,000 3-D images, exotic landscapes, and mysterious interiors. ... Read more

    Reviews (8)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Much Better Than Physicus, But...
    My wife and I are avid adventure gamers and, to help pass the time until "URU: Ages Beyond Myst" is released later this year, we decided to try "Chemicus". We played "Physicus" a couple years ago and, while we enjoyed it, we both thought that it could have been a much better game if it had tied into Physics a little deeper and if more effort was put into the adventure game design (look for my earlier review).

    We just completed "Chemicus" and I can honestly say that this was a MUCH better overall attempt. Nearly all of the puzzles of the game are chemistry-related ranging from the fairly easy and logical to the pretty hard and requiring a hint or two (we peeked into the included walkthrough only a couple of times to get us unstuck).

    The greatest improvement over "Physicus", however, was on the game design side. Like "Physicus" the graphics and music are lush and inviting. But, the scope of the game is where "Chemicus" shines over its predecessor. "Physicus" was just a singular environment or location to explore with very few cut-scenes and conveyances to enjoy along the way; both popular elements to a successful adventure game. In "Chemicus", even though the "subway" system was a little on the cheesy and repetitive side, at least it felt like we were transporting between unique locations (thank goodness the space bar forwards you through the animations). Plus, after solving some particularly difficult puzzles, we were rewarded with some nice cut-scenes; the balloon ride over the city being the best one. It wasn't on the same level as the bigger games like Riven and Schizm, but still an improvement.

    One thing that "Physicus" did get right and that "Chemicus" fails on, is its link into the "Brain Center", the included chemistry text book. The content of the chemistry text is impressive, although, it looks as if the inclusion of animation and narration of some of the experiments and topics went by the wayside probably due to the added scope of the underlying game. What really annoyed us was the fact that we couldn't follow a link from the particular puzzle we were working on into the appropriate chapters or topics of the textbook. Along the way, you pick up "Knowledge Chips" that add chapters to your Brain Center and I suppose, if you kept up with the reading along the way, the new topics would relate to the new puzzles in the area. But, later on, when we were still working on the puzzle, it was very difficult to find those same topics in the textbook again. Like "Physicus", a link to just the appropriate topics would have been very useful.

    Other than that, the game was very well written and designed. The user interface was very intuitive and easy to use. Could have done without the gratuitous, politically-correct diatribes on "greenhouse gasses" and "socially responsible science" that we have come to expect in these games (easy to ignore, though). We just started on "Bioscopia", but it looks as if that one more closely resembles "Physicus" in design and scope, bummer. I hear they are working on a "Chemicus II" game, so once we finish with URU, we will probably give it a go, too.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Education and confusion come together in Chemicus
    Okay, okay, I had fun. But I was also incredibly frustrated by the set up and "logic" (or I should say lack of logic) of this game and that truly detracted from my enjoyment. I wanted to learn something from this game, but I didn't get the connections half the time!
    This game has so much potential for teaching chemistry, but the set up was lacking logic - you don't know what you are supposed to be doing, and you have to go back and forth between the various "stops", never knowing if you have really done what needs to be done. And because you have to go back and forth so much, you have to wait for each area to load when you go to another stop. I tried skipping the animation of the transport zooming through the tube, but it still took a long time for the stop to load. And you want to scream when you click on the wrong button and have to wait twice!!
    One example of frustration for us is that you have to melt the ingredients for solder someplace other than the melting furnace before you put it into the melting furnace... How does that make sense? The logic behind why some ingredients are placed in certain places is very foggy, and sometimes you just don't have enough (understandable) information to figure something out, or the information is there but so obscure that you have to be a rocket scientist to understand it.
    So you look for help, and all you are given is a walkthrough, when hints would be so much better... and would help you learn why you are doing things. I have thought of making my own hints to pass on to someone who would like to learn something from the game.
    I ran Chemicus on a mac running OSX. It had to run on classic, so there were many times when it lagged. Don't know how it runs on a PC.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Not bad for edutainment!
    This is great game but it is NOT easily solved. It has Myst like elements where you find puzzles and solve them to move around. The game has a twist where you keep an inventory of items you will need in other areas of the game. The hints that came with the game were helpful..I hated to use them but after getting stuck and not making progress after a few hours I had to take a quick peek to continue. At first I thought it was too easy but then it got hard. If anyone writes otherwise they are not being truthful. I took many chem classes in college and not everything is intuitive in the game. Infact, sometimes you know what to do but the game only lets you do things in order to perform a task and you think that you are wrong (but you're not). You only switch CD's once ever and then you are done. I copied the help file to my computer so I would not have to reference it off of the disk. The only part I did not like was the navigation. If it had not been for that I would have given it 5 stars. . All in all I have zero regrets getting this game. I had just finished playing Myst III and I wanted another same type game. great buy

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very Challenging and Quite Lovely
    Your friend, Richard, a Chemistry buff, has discovered a strange amulet that, combined with certain experiments, allows him access to another dimension. You are supposed to meet with him to discuss his findings, but discover he has disappeared. It seems the denizens of this other dimension aren't too pleased! They think Richard's visits have upset the stability of their world and are holding him prisoner. Now you must cross the dimensions and prove your friendship by restoring a mysterious "Transmitter Molecule."

    _Chemicus_ is a first person game very much in the style of MYST: you are wandering through a virtually empty world picking up clues and solving puzzles. From time to time, as in the MYST series, you might see another person from a distance or receive a transmission from your imprisoned friend, but there is no character interaction. So the draw of this game is not clever, pun-filled scripting, but using close observation, deduction and sheer brainpower to get from point A to point B. There is not very much more story than is given to you in the introduction; to enjoy _Chemicus_ you have to enjoy solving inventory-based mechanical puzzles.

    And the scenery, of course. _Chemicus_ is a really gorgeous game. The "Other Side" is depicted as a place enough like our own world to be somewhat familiar, but enough different to give a certain sense of alienation -- again, much like MYST. The buildings and landscapes have a kind of organic texture that I personally find appealing. Unfortunately, there is no 360-degree movement; _Chemicus_ is a slideshow game. That means you're quite limited as to what you can view closely and where you can go. Personally I didn't find that too annoying (my husband hates it!), particularly as this game is so long and full of puzzles. I just didn't feel as put out by not being able to explore more fully as I might have.

    Aside from the graphics and the sound -- mainly subtle f/x -- the strength of this game is in the puzzles. Because they are all based on chemistry, there is a logic to them that is often lacking. Some of the puzzles are a bit confusing, but none is arbitrary. It does in fact help to have had a course in chemistry and some math, however. The game provides a "BRain Center" to teach you what you need to know to proceed, but I found that often the information it gave you wasn't quite enough. However, I was pretty astonished at how many of the tasks could be accomplished with no specialized knowledge. In a way, this game helps point out how much we use chemistry in everyday life, without thinking about it.

    I had some serious problems running this game, however. Despite having far more than the system requirements and using a full install, _Chemicus_ ran at a frustratingly slow pace. The scene transitions and animations were especially slow; I found them a good place to grab a snack or make a cup of tea. I also had trouble with the game crashing, often when I was accessing the Brain Center. If it hadn't been for those two things, I would easily have given _Chemicus_ 5 stars.

    Several other annoyances were minor: games were saved as a list with each game defined by date and time only, so it was hard to tell what each one was. I consider this minor beacuse I don't tend to backtrack much. There was a lot of back and forthing -- inventory was almost never used in the place you found it -- and some of the locations were hard to keep track of. One or two puzzles involved somewhat obscure solutions, aside from the chemistry.

    _Chemicus_ comes complete with a PDF walkthrough in case you get stuck. I did have to access this a few times. I didn't really like the way it was set up because, as walkthroughs tend to, it only told you what to do without telling you how. It also presents events in a specific order, which might not be the way you've played, _Chemicus_ being extremely non-linear. And I think it would have been helpful if you could have accessed the help file without totally exiting the game.

    Although marketed for "Everyone" _Chemicus_ will probably appeal best to science oriented teens and adults; I don't think it will really appeal to just any adventure gamer. A long game, it took me about 30 hours to complete.

    If you like MYST-type games and if you like science experiments, you will probably like _Chemicus_.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I love a challenge!
    Beautiful graphics, and really hard. This game is not easy, and that's the way I like it! (If you aren't like me, the makers of the game put a walkthrough on one of the CD-ROMs in case you get stuck.) This game is a first-person point & click in the style of Myst. There is a lot of area to cover and a lot of hard puzzles. It ran smoothly, and was hours of fun. For the length of time this game will take you it's also a really good value for the price. I liked it more than it's two predecessors (also good!), Physicus and Bioscopia. ... Read more

    7. Learn To Play Chess With Fritz & Chesster 2 (Mac)
    list price: $29.99
    our price: $29.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00076YWII
    Catlog: Software
    Manufacturer: Viva Media
    Sales Rank: 782
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • For kids age 8 and older
    • A new chess adventure with Fritz, Bianca, and Chesster
    • Covers openings, middle-game tactics, endgames, and more
    • More than 20 mini games within the game for practice
    • Powered by "Fritz", the world's leading chess software

    8. Scrabble (Mac)

    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00004WGVV
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: MacSoft
    Sales Rank: 1487
    Average Customer Review: 4.83 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Review

    If you can't find anyone to play with you because you're just too good--or you just don't like cleaning up little wooden tiles--the Scrabble CD-ROM is for you. Up to four players (human or computer) can play on a variety of boards and backgrounds (try chrome in the desert for that Road Warrior look). You can choose your computer opponent from five levels of difficulty, from Novice to Champion, or you can create your own custom opponent, based on a chesslike rating.

    Play is speedy and satisfying; the sounds of the tiles clicking on the board are alarmingly realistic. You can challenge words, be challenged yourself, or find definitions of words you don't know in the online Official Scrabble Dictionary. (You can even receive hints and suggestions from the "Maven.")

    Online multiplayer is in full force, too. Play with bored students in Oxford using the network features; though this slows the game down depending on your Internet connection rate, you'll find you need more time to crush your human challengers anyway. Sharpen your skills with the minigames: find two- or three-letter words, do anagrams, or find the best play with a given setup. Even if you're a regular Scrabble player, you should find yourself returning to your computer time and again, either to brush up or to try again against the champion. --Rob Lightner ... Read more

    Reviews (6)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Smart Scrabble
    This product is great for improving your Scrabble game, and it's also a lot of fun. You can play against 1-3 computer opponents with varying skill levels, or against real people. Unless you're in tournament mode, you can take advantage of features such as a word lister that generates suggestions for how to score the highest points with the tiles you have. There are also features such as instant summaries of letters remaining to be played.

    My one annoyance is with the dictionary: it challenges some words you'd think it would accept, while accepting some words you'd think it would reject. If in doubt, doublecheck a word with it prior to finalizing your move, or add words to your own custom dictionary.

    Overall, though, MacSoft's Scrabble exemplifies the benefits of converting a board game to software. No more tedious adding up points for tiles--the computer does it all for you!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Scrabble for Macs
    This is a great way to play Scrabble if your partner doesn't play. It has a dictionary, word lists, and other guides. It would be nice if you could click once for a new game and not have go back to the menu and re-do your preferences. Another problem (with Macs) is, it crashes when interrupted by indexing and other automatic computer functions (updates, etc.) All in all it's an easy and fun way to squeeze a little Scrabble into your life, and to improve your game.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A winner
    I play this game on the new iBook (128 RAM; 10G). It may be necessary to restart your system before playing if you left the iBook on for many days without shutting it down. Otherwise Scrabble plays without a glitch.

    The game is a joy to play. There are numerous modes (e.g., 2 or 3 letter words, anagrams, 'bingo' or 7 letter words, etc.); numerous set ups (one or many players, networking, human or computer players); and different levels of difficulty. Sometimes I play for the sole purpose of learning new words, in these sessions I use extensively the hint menu and the word suggestion menu. For a word lover it is pure joy.

    The interface is beautiful--it is an excellent mix of the quaint traditional feel and possibilities of technology. Although different 'look and feel' are available from high tech, to desert, landscape, etc.

    The game set up menu is a bit clunky (player selection, score summaries, etc.). Regardless this is a great design.

    Highly recommended for all ages

    5-0 out of 5 stars Scrabble - a guilt-free use of time!
    We finally succumbed to purchasing Scrabble for the computer before Christmas and promptly lost our seven year old son and houseguests to various parts of the house. Friends and acquaintances have become hooked too.

    The game is positively additive. Both adjectives can be equally applied - which parent can complain when a child will sit for an hour playing a game that expands his vocabulary, spelling and strategy? Our vocabulary has been broadened too.

    Although we give the game 5 stars overall, there are a couple of glitches that could be ironed out for better play. Maven (the computer player) is both judge and jury in game play and assumes that he, and he alone, knows all words. If he doesn't recognise a word opponents are instantly chalenged and loose their turn. There is no opportunity for "appeal" or the facility to educate the computer as you play. The custom dictionary feature is not entirely intuitive and can only be revised outside game play which gives the computer opponent a distinct advantage. One can avoid such conflicts by checking the on-screen dictionary before playing the word, but that's not really how the game is played.

    The computer's suggestions for word play are slightly limited - it manages to see individual words, but lacks the breadth of perception to "see" stacked word play and the higher points that can be played in this manner. It also isn't particularly good on strategy.

    These niggles aside, we are happy to give the game an unequivocal "two thumbs up". As a way to hone skills and play a game when either no-one else wants to or is available, it's great.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Countless Hours of Fun for Scrabble-philes Eveywhere!
    This new, update version of Scrabble on CD-ROM is as entertaining as its' boardgame equivalent. Providing challenges that even the most professional players will find challenging, Scrabble is a great to kill free time or develop your vocabulary skills.

    The addition of a dictionary, in addition to the games screen views only adds to the excitement that the boardgames lacks when it comes to design and usefulness. The people at Hasbro have done it again, and I am totally elated that they decided to release this updated version on CD-ROM.

    So if you are a single player in look for some major competition, or want to compete with a friend online, Scrabble is your guarantee for an entertaining time. Add this to your shopping basket today, and see what I am raving about. ... Read more

    9. Myst 3: Exile

    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000056O4Q
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: UBI Soft
    Sales Rank: 1381
    Average Customer Review: 3.71 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Review

    Myst arrived just in time to take advantage of brand-newCD-ROM technology, and quickly became the number-one reason to buy anew computer. Myst and its sequel, Riven, featuredbeautiful and lonely landscapes, a strong and fascinating sense ofpervading mystery, and puzzles both fiendish and clever. Playersnavigated through the games by clicking on points of interest, andsolved puzzles by paying careful attention to the lush graphics andhaunting sounds of the environment. Myst III: Exile proudlycontinues and even advances that tradition.

    Myst's ongoing story line is as convoluted as it is fantastic.Central to the story is the mysterious civilization of the D'ni, whichcreates entire worlds by writing books. Other books are used to linkthe D'ni worlds together. Myst trapped the player in a series ofinterconnected worlds, and challenged the player to puzzle through theramblings of two mad brothers in order to free Atrus, their imprisonedfather. Riven revealed more of the history of the D'ni, and sentthe player to the unstable world of Riven in order to rescue Atrus'swife.

    Myst III: Exile concerns Atrus's earnest attempt at creating anew world. He hopes this world will mark the rebirth of the D'ni, butbefore he finishes his book, a thief (portrayed in the game by actorBrad Dourif) breaks into his laboratory and mucks things up. You haveto track this thief through worlds written by Atrus in his earlieryears. Within each world you must right the wrongs the thief hascreated, all the while uncovering a deeper mystery surrounding hisrelationship to Atrus and his troublesome children. Prior experiencewith Myst and Riven isn't necessary for this thirdexcursion, but familiarity with Myst's point-and-click gameplayand its often infuriating puzzle logic helps.

    New to the game is a full 3-D landscape, which replaces the staticprerendered artwork of the previous games. The gorgeous new graphicsallow you to quickly pan and scan your way through an area, looking forpuzzles and action spots with the hand cursor. The puzzles have beenimproved so that you can now see changes to the environment immediatelyafter you solve one, rather than simply moving on to the next picture.Still, the puzzles are often wickedly difficult and may provefrustrating to new players.

    The environment is the true star of the game, and is sure to enchantplayers of all stripes. As before, the music and artwork are topnotchand immersing, and the experience is not easily forgotten. Mystfans of old will be delighted with this new installment, and those newto the series will be enchanted, provided they are willing to spendtime on the puzzles, enjoy the scenery, and let the game carry themaway. --Andrew S. Bub


    • A strong continuation of the series
    • Brilliant new artwork and music
    • Puzzles can be confusing
    • Not for impatient gamers
    ... Read more

    Reviews (333)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Transdimentional travel from inner space
    I just finished MystIII:Exile and was not disappointed (while I was, a little bit, by Riven).

    First of all, I ran it on a G3 iMac at 400 MHz, and did not encounter any trouble, except for the fact that my finder could not support pop-up windows after launching it (because of the change of screen resolution). I did a full install, and it seemed that I did not even need the disc 1 to start the program. The game, by itself, was familiar (I have played the two others) and it was even more familiar since it used "The Journeyman project 3" 360 degres panning ability (from the same company, I think). Still, progression through the worlds is still slide-like (while in "The journeyman", you got movies to keep the impression of moving through places [well, yeah, I am a big fan of "The JourneyMan project 2 and 3"]).

    Exile is a hybrid between the two previous games: you get Riven's awsome graphics, but you have the exploration of different worlds from Myst that was missing in Riven (although, in Riven, you had several worlds in one place, it's not the same feel as jumping from one universe to the other [when you got to link to another world, you can't explore it...]).

    Puzzles are not too hard, though I'm sure non-nerdy game players (which I'd like to be [a nerdy game player;)], even though they seem so "blase";) with new releases) will find them quite difficult, and they are logical, given you follow the peculiar logic of these worlds.

    Concerning the people saying they got through too fast, I would like to add that, yes, it seems easier now that we have played the first two games (and that clones of Myst have appeared), but I wouldn't bet on you going so fast if this had been released at the time instead of the original Myst (without considering the obvious impossibility [eg, that it could not have been released at the time. Not under this form, anyway]).

    So, at it stands, it is a nice equilibrium between beautiful graphics, medium complexity of puzzles and good story telling (other aspects have been mentionned in previous reviews).

    The ending was, to me, a little bit disappointing. Maybe because it goes too fast, compared to the time you spend (even if not that great) solving some of the puzzles. On the other hand, the sequences following the final solvings for each world visited before was worth it.

    4-0 out of 5 stars What a relief after Riven!
    "Riven" came out just after "Zork Nemesis" and its groundbreaking 360 degree rotation was introduced. So the second Myst game as a result came across as a tremendous disappointment after playing the gorgeous and immersive "Nemesis". After completely circular visuals and constantly atmospheric music, "Riven" failed to engage me much in its gameplay because of its primitive-looking snapshot style. Plus, I managed to solve it in its entirety during a single weekend...far too easy...

    But THIS game, on the other hand, is something else entirely. I get the impression that the original Myst creators took one look at "Nemesis", silently cursed to themselves, went back to the drawing board...and THIS time came up with a winner. Taking more than its fair share of cues from "Nemesis" and its technological innovation (which is slightly irritating in the way of how the press is currently praising them and acting as though the Myst developers just invented them when this was already done so beautifully years ago! Come on guys, be FAIR!), the result is a gorgeous and immersive adventure which manages to catch up wtih it existed five years ago.

    I hate to say it, but this game is starting to remind me of "King's Quest", a gaming series that was considered groundbreaking with its first title and then spent the rest of two decades playing technological catch-up.

    But that aside, it's a wonderful and challenging game. The only problem I've had with it is some choppy glitches with some of the animation sequences: an opening sequence with Catharine was stable except for the fact that her speech kept fading in and out and I couldn't hear her properly, and some portions of the "casual" action animation (such as when you are in an elevator and you're supposed to be watching a gate spin around it through a window) was equally choppy and unresponsive. The problems persist even after the patch was installed.

    The annoying animation errors are the only thing here which keep me from giving this title a full five stars. The moment they can be fixed (hopefully on the upcoming DVD edition due before this Christmas?), I'll edit this into a full five-star review.

    **WARNING!!! In closing, I'm about to explain the nature of the puzzles by sharing my reaction to the first one and in doing so am going to give away the solution to it. If you do not want to hear any puzzle solutions, read no further.**

    Confusing puzzles in this game are guaranteed to lead even to most steel-bound adventurer astray, as by their sheer nature they can lead you into being tricked that they are far more complicated than they actually are. I've been a veteran of adventure puzzle games for twenty years and even I got stumped by (get this) the first puzzle. It's the one involving the revolving lamps. I had guessed correctly that I had to get a beam of light to shine through them on to a particular door's surface, but could not get any light to appear through them. Turning the crank at the beginning of the setup a couple of times didn't do a thing (I was convinced it was to power up the whole arrangement), so I thought that maybe it would all switch on once I had gotten the lamps all aimed in a proper order. Noticing that each one was a different color, I had thought at first that they needed to be done in the order of the spectrum, but when that obviously didn't work I went berzerk trying to figure out how to get the light to turn on.

    I finally broke down and, despite my better nature, looked up the solution on the internet. What did I have to do?

    Turn the crank ONE MORE TIME!

    Afterwards, I was practically bashing my head against the wall while screaming inwardly, "THAT'S IT???!!..."

    5-0 out of 5 stars The best Myst
    Myst III: Exile isn't as dark as Myst or Riven. I think it's better that way, actually. This game has some of the best visuals and scenery in the series so far. The new 360 degree free-look is awesome. The story is the deepest I've seen in the series so far. The puzzles are a little silly and out of place, but they are still fun and challenging. Myst III: Exile is certainly, so far the best in the series.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, immersive, scary, and even a little moving...
    I loved Myst, but found Riven a little flat despite the beauty of its environments.

    I was therefore pleasantly surprised to love Myst 3: Exile best of all. The game is a perfect combination of the dreamlike world of Myst, with the attention to detail offered by Riven, and with a really exciting storyline, gorgeously rendered environments, and a lush immersive world to boot.

    Add to all this some superb acting from Brad Dourif as a villain who's as sympathetic as he is frightening, and you have the makings of a great game. While I'd always liked him as a character actor, Dourif really impressed me here -- the drama of the game really lives or dies on his shoulders, and he brings terror and poignance to the game in equal measure.

    I reveled in almost all the worlds Myst 3 presented (the first and last best of all), and the puzzles are seamless and beautifully integrated into the game. (Like some others, I did find the plant world to be a bit tedious and confusing to navigate through, but it was also a lot of fun to conquer in the end.)

    I recommend Myst 3 for Myst and Riven lovers both -- but it's also just as much fun for gamers new to the Myst worlds, and may be the perfect introduction. The game even offers the possibility of several different endings, depending on how you solve the final quandaries of the game. A superb game -- one of the best I've ever played.

    Note: I'm running on the XP platform and after updating with the latest patch, the game performed flawlessly for me.

    3-0 out of 5 stars disappointing
    I liked "Myst," absolutely loved "Riven" but was disappointed with "Exile." Partly it was the graphics, I often ended up clicking all over the screen because it was difficult to find things. I liked the puzzles well enough, especially the magnetic world, but I did find the plant world tedious and the last world a let-down; the game ends very abruptly, I wanted to go off to those other islands.

    This game isn't as challenging as "Riven" and it isn't as exciting as "Myst." Still, if you like the series, you'll probably want to buy this one. Fwiw, my husband liked it more than I did. ... Read more

    10. Emperor's Mahjong (Mac)
    list price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000VLYXG
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: MacPlay
    Sales Rank: 3816
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (1)

    Challenging and addictive!
    MahJong is a an ancient Chinese tile game that was adapted for the American market in the early 1920's and today several varieties are available as computer games. I first taught myself to play this fairly simple game of tile pairing in an online game room. The beauty of using your own game CD is not having to deal with online chat rooms, and web crashes. EMPEROR'S MAHJONG is especially appealing due to the challenge of progressively difficult game play with a 'prize' awaiting the victorious.

    First thing I did was personalize my selections through Options. I prefer a partial screen display which enables ready access to desktop files and dock applications. Although the three different music streams have a catchy Chinese theme, it isn't long before I found this background noise tiresome, so I selected my own music through i-Tunes. Tile Design graphics is limited to a white, black or wood-grain base. Since the Chinese characters are unfamiliar to the American eye, I found the wood-grain easier to decipher. I recommend assigning your name to a Profile - it is here that all your game statistics are recorded; such as rank, time spent, tiles removed, games played, average pair time, cleaned games, average percentage and hints/shuffles used. It was a real eye opener to see how much time I spent "getting acquainted" with this game as my self-imposed prerequisite to writing this review. Wink. Wink.

    I referred often to the Scroll of Wisdom in the Stats portion of my personal profile to view the 6 different game mode spheres represented by: Horoscope, Crafts, Nature, Scenery, Martial Arts, and Emperors - each with 12 layouts. Here it keeps track of how many layouts in each mode have been successfully completed. Successful progression earns new titles, words of wisdom (reminiscent of fortune cookie wisdom) and accolades from the Emperor. Each completed sphere earns a gem, 5 must be collected to enter the final challenge: the meeting of the 12 Emperor's. Ultimately you must complete the layouts in Emperor mode in order to get the Scroll of Wisdom quote.

    To begin play, select New Game and choose to play Shanghai with one or two players, or take the Emperor's Challenge with your (required) profile name. Game difficulty is a choice of Normal, Easy or Easiest for Shanghai and does not apply to the Emperor's Challenge which progresses in difficulty. Competitive me took the bait right away and spent most of my game time pursuing the Emperor's Challenge. For the sake of this review, I tried a few games of single play Shanghai and discovered this is the only place hints are allowed - no wonder I wasn't getting any help. As a side note, I never figured out how to work User Layouts, and found this guessing game scenario a bit off putting. Either I missed the loop somehow, or it is assumed the beginner will figure things out eventually, which for the most part I did. My kids probably would've figured it all out in 5 minutes or less!

    Actual game play is simplistic but requires full concentration. You must eliminate all or a % of the tiles by matching pairs with at least one side free and no tiles on them. Maximize full play time allotted per layout by waiting until all the tiles are laid face down before pressing start. That extra 10 seconds might mean a win for you. Chances are you won't complete all 12 layouts of a sphere in one session, so when you return to play, click on Load New Game, then make sure you select the proper mode because the default always begins on the Horoscope level. Icons represent the 12 different layouts per sphere. Highlighted icons indicate successful wins, so be sure to select one unearned or you will be repeating your games. You can retry a layout if you desire to better your time.

    I tested The Emperor's Challenge on my Power PC G3 iMac, using Jaguar. On several occasions the application quit or froze and I had to force quit - which meant I lost all the progress from that play session. I also wasn't able to Resume Game as I once was able to - so I don't know if I lost that feature during one of the force quits or not. I didn't want to reload the game and lose everything I had earned, so I persevered. I decided to quit the game after each win to save it, just in case the application quit unexpectedly. I couldn't determine if this was a game glitch or my computer? I also encountered several occasions in which the time limit did not sync correctly with the game. I was often short changed even though the timer said I had more playtime... this seemed like a rip off considering I may have progressed through the game more quickly if I hadn't had to replay the same ones several times. Overall I had fairly good success with the CD for all the time I spent on it.... 2 days 6 hrs , 1107 games played. The closest I got to winning was 4 tiles remaining before time ran out. I can't begin to count how many tries it took to get that close. I'd hoped to share what the illusive Scroll of Wisdom is ... but alas, I don't know if I will ever find out! Perhaps you will.

    System Requirements (minimum):
    •Computer: Power Mac G3, or more recent.
    •Mac OS 8.6, 9.x or Mac OS X
    •Memory: 64MB RAM
    •Disk: 50MB free hard disk space
    •Video: 800x600 supporting millions of colors
    •A CD-ROM drive ... Read more

    11. Big Bang Board Games (Mac)
    list price: $24.99
    our price: $24.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0006AAO8C
    Catlog: Video Games
    Manufacturer: Freeverse Software
    Sales Rank: 5515
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Freeverse's ultimate addition to the Deluxe Board Games
    When the Deluxe Board Games was the best there could be, the Big Bang Board Games! It uses the iChat application to play 7 (I think) fantastic games. With the click of a button you can send your "game key" to anyone on your buddy list. Even if your friend dosen't have it, you can send the whole game to him/her with the click of another button. The games are great and the interface is amazing. The backround music is very pretty. Overall, this game is completely worth it. ... Read more

    12. Burning Monkey Mahjong (Mac)
    list price: $19.99
    our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000A33W6
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Freeverse Software
    Sales Rank: 2890
    Average Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • A beautiful, tile-matching game with tons of different layouts and tile sets
    • Add in the monkey antics and you've got hours of challenging fun
    • Multiple-tile layouts; a random layout generator; beautifully drawn tilesets
    • Freeverse character favorites Monty and Jackie return, with new monkey pals
    • Customizable backgrounds, with photos by Sandia Ren; fun monkey humor

    Reviews (2)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful game with lots of options!
    Now, bear in mind -- I'm not an avid gamer - in fact I rarely play computer games altogether nowadays. My favorite games were in the late 80's early '90s when game play was paramount over flashy graphics.

    I purchased this program after trying it out for a few weeks via Freeverse's website. This game is very similar to Activision's 80's version of Shanghai -- except that it's gorgeous to look at, has terrific gameplay, and is ...(insert drum roll here) ...loads of FUN!

    I prefer games that are easy to get into, and continue to hold my interest over time. This review would be 5 stars, but I took down one star because under MacOSX 10.3, I can't play any of the audio tracks on the game. Freeverse software has indicated that a patch will be made available soon.

    Highly recommended, especially for non-gamers that want a good, fun diversion every now and then. Perfect for kids and adults alike!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Beware: Not what it seems
    Just a note ... this is NOT a Mahjong game. This is that (lame, IMHO) tile matching game that so many erroneously call Mahjong. If you're looking to play Mahjong against the computer, this ain't it. ... Read more

    13. Hoyle Puzzle Games 2003
    list price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005VU43
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Sierra
    Sales Rank: 2543
    Average Customer Review: 3.33 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (6)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Stay engrossed for hours!!!!!
    I also purchased Board Games and Card Games at or about the same time. Since I and my three other siblings were brought up on most of these games back in the 1950's, it is a big pleasure for me to play these games alone or against computer generated opposition. I can't cheat. . .this is wonderful. Also I love to redo a game in case I think I can make a higher score. I love the Facemaker option. So in between my boring daily chores I play Puzzle Games or one of the others. So far Word Yacht is my favorite. As a former English teacher it is a real challange!!!!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Hoyle Puzzle Games 2003 - a disappointment
    I have purchased all the Hoyle Collections (Board Games, Card Games, Word Games, Casino); and have found all of them to be superb...Have always said that Hoyle makes the best games. However, Puzzle Games falls far short of their usual efforts. Most games are boring, or a repetition of other packages (Anagrams, Crosswords, Hangman, Mahjonng). Not their best effort; and not what I was expecting from Hoyle.

    1-0 out of 5 stars crashes on mac
    iMac OS 9.2 256K real RAM. Have been using system 2 years, no problems.

    This game is a 'port'. I found parts of the 'games' which will not run on my Mac. Other parts simply cause crashes.

    Although advertised as a 'Mac' playable game I cannot recommend it for such.

    Three kids [12 - 14 yo] installed on Win XP home. Report games 'boring' and unchallenging.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Gets old quickly
    Although Slide Tiles and Edge Tiles are different than the usual solitaire games, most of the games are pretty simplistic. The maze games, although intriguing, are awkward and frustrating to play on a computer keyboard. If you're looking for a mindless alternative to television, this is a good product. If you're looking for a challenging diversion, Microsoft's Pandora's Box is a much better buy.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great Mixture of Games
    I think it has great variety of games. It has some solitaire games. I don't know how to play solitaire but for those of us that do; it is a nice inclusion. I like the inclusion of the tile games. I was kind of unsure if I wanted to buy this cd because I wasn't thrilled with previous versions of tile matching by Hoyle. But here they added some new versions of tile matching games that require more strategy. They are less boring.
    The Incredible Machine is a complete version of the game. It is a good game because you can experiment so much in trying to figure out the Puzzles. Unfortunately, there is a issue where the game wasn't retaining scores.
    The Word puzzles are great. The Anagrams makes you think about how many words you can make from a series of letters. I liked Hangman because you can choose different scenes to play the game. There are crosswords as well.
    There are some arcade-types of games. Some involve running around a maze; which is challenging with the various helpers and obstacles. Time breaker is fun as it is similar to break out. However depending on what is loosened from the wall; there are interesting effects on gameplay.
    Star collector is challenging as it is about lining up pieces and capturing stars. I think it is one of the more harder of the games.
    This game has something for everyone. It isn't boring. No one really seems to do these compilations as well as Hoyle. They seem to run well. And you don't need the Cd to play the game in your computer once installed. ... Read more

    14. Hoyle Kids Games 2002
    list price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005MJ9J
    Catlog: Software
    Publisher: Sierra
    Sales Rank: 727
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Review

    Childhood gaming chestnuts like Old Maid and Snakes & Ladders get sospiffed up on this CD-ROM, adults may find themselves indulging in these gameswhen the kids aren't busy with them. The multilevel appeal of Hoyle Kids'Games is best illustrated by their version of Hangman: not only can playershang 'em high in settings that range from the Wild West to a sandy beach, but atthe advanced level, the game throws players words like dysprosium.

    There are 15 games to play on this Mac- and Windows-friendly disc, and up tofour players can compete at once. The standards are: Tic-Tac-Toe, Old Maid,Crazy 8s, War, Hangman, Snakes & Ladders, Chinese Checkers, Checkers, Go Fish,Battling Ships (similar to Battleship), and Memory Match (a.k.a. Concentration).New games include Bump 'Em (imagine Aggravation with cars and oil slicks),Placer Racer (an aiming game that requires spatial skills and strategy), TheMusic Game (hearing and repeating musical sequences), and Speedy Racer (type theletters that are rapidly falling out of the sky to save the houses of the ThreeLittle Pigs). In addition, this game has the best "build your own face" functionwe've ever seen. Realistic noses, eyes, and mouths coupled with arrow functionsthat allow players to stretch necks, slide mouths, and widen eye spacing turncharacter creation into engrossing mad-scientist fun. The characters the programprovides as opponents aren't too shabby either. Among them are Ethel the granny,Roswell the alien, and a pup named Pepper who whines, "This is worse thanobedience training!" when he's losing at War.

    Technically, it's all here. Graphics are great, games can be interrupted fordinnertime and saved in mid-play, and nothing takes too long to load. An optionto play the game in a window allows use of the computer's other functions whilethis program runs. Folks who have forgotten how to play Checkers (you know whoyou are) will appreciate the many different helpers at the bottom of thescreen--they range from a genie who reads the rules out loud to various cop-out buttonsthat will give hints or do your next move for you. And, of course, upper-levelGo Fish players can get rid of the help bar, and simply immerse themselves inthe Zen of casting for the perfect card. (Ages 5 and older) --AnneErickson ... Read more

    Reviews (3)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Adults will love it too
    This is a great computer game! My 3 year old loves to play "Battling Ships" and my 5 year olds favorites are "Go Fish" and "Placer Racer". The computer characters are fun to play with (we especially love Marvin) and you can also play against another real person at the computer. They list the appropriate ages for this product at 5-12 but I confess to sneaking a few games of "Chinese Checkers" by myself and enjoying a game of "Bump Em" with the kids. there are different levels of play from easy to very difficult to keep different age levels happy. Gotta have this one!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful CD
    I have bought a number of Hoyle CDs since they began coming out with this type of game compilation. This one I play with my duaghter who is two but she likes trying to figure out the games. She does like Tic Tac Toe and Crazy eights though she can't understand what she is suposed to do yet.
    I liked the characters that play the game with you. I think they are friendly and not too irriating like some of the Hoyle personalities in other games.
    I like the format of how you choose the games; where it is like your bedroom and you click on the shelf to pick something. That is how Hoyle used to configure their games till you got so many one one cd. They increased how many games were on the CD each year.
    Bump "em is like Aggravation. It is my favorite game; better than Parchisi. I like how they make games seem whimsical like using frogs as Checker pieces; using a goldfish to make Xs and Os for Tic Tac Toe; using little men to climb a treehouse for Snakes and Ladders.
    The games are kid friendly but they are classics that grownups can enjoy playing even when the kids aren't around. I think that board games teach kids things like rules, strategy, counting, and cause and effect. So this is a good way of teaching kids how to play and master these games.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THIS IS GREAT!

    15. Kasparov Chessmate (Mac)
    list price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000VLYXQ
    Catlog: Video Games
    Manufacturer: MacPlay
    Sales Rank: 9728
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    16. MACPLAY Bejeweled & Alchemy (Macintosh)

    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000U1OC8
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Macplay
    Sales Rank: 5783
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • In Bejeweled, you'll have to match up 3 gems in a row to collect points and clear the board. Sound easy? It's not - but it's fun!
    • Alchemy takes you on a quest to transform lead into gold
    • See if you can solve the puzzles to unravel this ancient secret, and become Grand Master
    • Great new soundtrack, exciting game modes, and hints on demand

    17. Chessmaster 6000 (Mac)

    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00002S63O
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: UBI Soft
    Sales Rank: 6492
    Average Customer Review: 3.33 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Product Description

    Chessmaster 6000 is interactive chess at its best, featuring 3-D game boards and playing pieces. The lush graphics and completely redesigned interface put you right in the middle of the action.

    Make the most of your game with rated play, insider playing tips, and expert assessment by renowned chess masters. If you like, expert chess coach Bruce Pandolfini can assess your skills move by move. Take new diagnostic tests to determine your true skill level--and let Bruce point out your strengths and weaknesses. It's like having a personal tutor by your side!

    You'll also get chess tips from International Master Josh Waitzkin (subject of the film and book Searching for Bobby Fischer) in his updated audio-annotated games and visual-play analysis. Take advantage of his vast wisdom and learn inside moves that you won't find anywhere else! ... Read more

    Reviews (3)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Great Chess Companion
    Designed for the chess lover in need of a challenge! Chessmaster 6000 provides hours of pleasure. Although it is ideal for intermediate to veteran players, beginners can learn to play with the wealth of tutorials. The best bet is to have someone teach you the very basics, then use CM6000 to hone your skills.

    CM6000 provides "personalities" (complete with photos and bios!) of various skill, ability, and style for hours of challenge. Of course, the masters, like Fischer and Spassky, as well as the Chessmaster himself, are present and accounted for.

    As with other incarnations of CM, the chessboards (ranging from traditional to contemporary and beyond) are beautifully rendered.

    Overall, Chessmaster 6000 is very well worth it to any Mac gamer in search of a good game of chess, or just wanting to learn more about the game.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Not Much of an Improvement
    This game is not for the serious chess enthusiast. If you enjoy a challenging match, you may be better off playing a three-year old than purchasing this game. If you already have another version of this game, like 2000, stick with it!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Chessmaster!
    This is by far the best chessmaster game.There's near 100 players with all sorts of ratings,around 200 to about 2300.
    For all chess fans this is by far the best chess game you can find,and you can improve your chess skills too.So there you go,chess friends.6000 is one brilliant chess computer game. ... Read more

    18. Monopoly (Mac)

    Asin: B00004Y2OV
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: MacSoft
    Sales Rank: 7907
    Average Customer Review: 3.14 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan


    • Electronic version of the classic board game
    • Animated board pieces
    • Bright 3-D graphics
    • Compete with your friends over the Internet
    • For 1 or more players over Internet

    Reviews (7)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Bloody Hell!
    I love Monopoly but it's a pain in the royal chambers to set up all the money and clean it up after you're done. I thought this game would get rid of those problems, which it did, but it also made new ones. The host sound like a yankee carnie from the early 90's, dare I say. The computer always maanages to land on his own properties all the time and is quite stubborn in the trade aspect. This game frequently freezes, which is another annoyance. Finally, the map editor. It seems like a brilliant idea, but you can't save your bloody work! Overall, if you enjoy playing cartoon-like games, this is for you.

    4-0 out of 5 stars If you love the board game then you'll like this.
    Monopoly is one of those games you may not want to play with friends because basically someone has to win and everyone else really loses. However, here you can play with someone on-line or on another computer hooked up to your or with computer players. One word of caution: the computer players cheat a lot!

    1-0 out of 5 stars The tail is wagging the dog
    For the first few minutes, you're likely to think this is pretty cute. The view of the board zooms around in 3D, the little dog wags its tail, and the characters make droll comments. But after those few minutes it will dawn on you--all this cute stuff is getting in the way of playing the game. It takes the patience of a saint to make it all the way through an entire game, and you're unlikely to want to play another. Even if you disable as much of the cutsie stuff as you're allowed to, the view of the board still zooms around in a way that will make your stomach turn (and prevents you from getting any real sense of the location of the pieces). Play is excruciatingly slow, and frequently interrupted by the silly (and ineffective) attempts at trading by the computer players.

    It's loaded with sound and graphics but it's essentially unplayable. Buy this only if you DON'T like to play Monopoly.

    1-0 out of 5 stars What OS are you using?
    On anything OS 9+ on two different machines a CD game that worked a few years ago is now totally unsupported and useless. I hope this current CD works for you.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Classic Game Of Monopoly
    This game is great fun and is the best CD-Rom I have ever had! ... Read more

    19. Riddle Of The Sphinx (Mac)

    our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00004U8KU
    Catlog: Video Games
    Publisher: Dreamcatcher Interactive
    Sales Rank: 8916
    Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan Product Description

    A noted archaeologist believes he's stumbled upon the answer to the Sphinx's famous query. However, after deciphering the ancient scroll holding this arcane knowledge, he realizes he's been cursed with certain death. In a last, desperate attempt to pass on the secret, he sends for none other than... you! Find the missing scroll and piece together hidden clues to finally solve this celebrated mystery. ... Read more

    Reviews (8)

    3-0 out of 5 stars This is NO Myst!!!
    I LOVE adventure games of this genre, but I found this game lightweight when compared to the likes of Myst, Riven and Exile. The puzzles were easy. The only difficulty came in finding a few critical items that were WELL hidden.


    Look in EVERY shadowy spot.

    The end game is a letdown. It felt unfinished, somehow.

    4-0 out of 5 stars many entertaining hours
    i seem to have a dissenting opinion, but i really liked this. the puzzles were engaging, but not too hard (i didnt need a walkthrough). the game progressed at a rate such that i didnt get bogged down. the scenery was pretty, with lots of places to explore. examples are the temples off the queens chambers and the lagoon with several ruins surrounding it. most of the puzzles can be solved by finding the answer after careful exploration (like the alligator room); no mental revelations are necessary. it is possible to die, so save often. after a while, the player will recognize the danger spots. there is a relatively difficult maze whose passageways dont make sense, but it is still negotiable.

    problems include jamming, mainly around the tape recorder, and a very obstinate padlock. the jamming can be defeated by turning off the ATIs in the extensions manager, but this requires restarting your computer each time you play or go back to other applications. once these are off, though, the game runs very smoothly. some places can be a little boring, like the endless tunnel and the great sand transfer, but generally things move along smartly. also, the music was good. generally, i dont notice game music, but i did with this one.

    there have been remarks about religious undertones of this game. i really think that this is reading too much into it; it is just a computer game. the satisfaction comes from finally getting that door to open and not from some religious epiphany. in all, i consider rots to be a worthy effort and an entertaining puzzle (adventure) game. its sequel is coming out for windows, and i hope its available for mac.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Riddle this!
    For a game with so many programing flaws, it was fun and very challenging - too challenging at times. Too many program problems to contend with but passing the initial tape playing problems, the game was almost flawless. The puzzles are exact and demanded your attention to the max. No shortcuts here. The graphics are great but the play could have been better - too much like Myst and Riven in that respect. Just get beyond the technical problems with the patch at the Dreamcatcher web site and it should work fine.

    1-0 out of 5 stars The Egyptians are Dull
    I was hoping for a good exploration game with little shoot'em ups and more discovery and learning. Instead, here is a game that hopes you will buy the hint book. I did not get very far because I am not good at puzzles. I was greatly dissappointed.

    (...)Jesus was Jewish, he was raised three years in Egypt and there is no problem with singing the joy that inspires your life and saves your soul. However, that is no excuse for a poorly executed CD-ROM.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Big disappointment!!
    I bought this game shortly after seeing it listed on the top ten games of the year list. After buying this game however, I thought it should be on the worst ten games of the year list! Graphics are horrible, sound is crummy, and the plot line lacks anything interesting. After 1/2 an hour of playing the game, I decided it would be more interesting to go watch Barney with ny 4 year old nephew. It has not re-entered my cdrom drive since. You would be much better off buying Myst which, although more expensive, is so much more interesting than this! ... Read more

    20. SIERRA Hoyle Puzzle Games 2003 ( Windows )
    list price: $29.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00008A5XD
    Catlog: Video Games
    Manufacturer: Sierra
    Sales Rank: 11292
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Product Description

    15 exciting games guaranteed to provide challenges for problem solvers of all ages. Includes Hoyle Rule Book and Strategy Guide, Webster's New World College Dictionary, and Placer Racer and Mahjong Tiles for use on Palm OS and Windows CE Handhelds. ... Read more


    • See if you can solve the difficult riddles and complex puzzles of The Incredible Machine
    • Fun word puzzles are waiting by the truckload -- Hangman, Anagrams and many more
    • Line up game pieces to collect all the twinkling lights in Star Collector
    • All sorts of classic arcade games are included here, too - it's the game collection with something for everyone!
    • Minimum PC Requirements - Windows 98/2000/Me/XP, Pentium 233 or higher

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