Gaming on AmigaOS 4.1: Dale Hardshovel & The Bloomstone Mystery

Hi and welcome to a new post here on the Gaming on AmigaOS 4.1 blog! ๐Ÿ™‚

Today we’re going to have a look at a puzzle game called Dale Hardshovel & The Bloomstone Mystery, which was created by Phime Studio and ported to AmigaOS 4 by HunoPPC.

It should work on most AmigaOS 4.x configurations, including emulation in WinUAE.

Installation

You can get the game directly from HunoPPC’s website or from OS4Depot. You can also use the links below to download it directly:

http://os4depot.net/share/game/puzzle/dalehardshovel.lha

http://hunoppc.amiga-projects.net/sites/default/files/software_files/dale-hardshovel-os4.lha

When the game has finished downloading (the archive is 53 MB in size), enter its directory and right-click on the appropriate file. Choose “extract to” and then select a destination. The game will unpack, and when done, enter the directory and double-click on the main icon to launch it (you might get a requester asking you to assign, but it works just pressing โ€œokโ€ on these).

According to the readme-file, the game is shareware and costs 3 EUR to register.

Gameplay

As mentioned earlier, this is a puzzle game. The aim of the game is to match items together to make them disappear. When all items are gone, you progress onto the next level. I tried it a few times and must say that it requires a lot of thinking and pondering to solve the puzzles. Fortunately there is a hint-system in place if you are really stuck. ๐Ÿ™‚

What is the game about? Let us have a look at the background story.

The story is about Dale Hardshovel, an Australian archaeologist. While working in his study, he gets a visit from his daughter (Daisy). She has an old roll of papyrus that needs to be translated for her exhibition. The papyrus intrigues Dale, who then checks his archaeologist network and discovers that the inscription is the belonging of an ancient brotherhood from Egypt. The only key to the translation is the mysterious Bloomstone. Now, the problem is that the secret is hidden in the Big Pyramid, guarded by Anubis, an ancient Egyption deity. Dale has to solve 100 puzzles and to collect all the missing pieces of the Bloomstone. He will discover that there is much more to the challenge when getting further on his quest.

Now that we have the story in mind, let’s have a go at the game. ๐Ÿ™‚

We’ve started the game and now it is loading.
The main menu appears on screen. Here you can start a game, change options, look at the credits, get help or quit. You can also visit Dale’s study to look at trophies and high-scores. The menu is fully animated and looks very, very nice.
Here’s the options in the game. I’m running it in fullscreen.
This is certainly a nice study! Click on the computer to view the high-scores or on the shelf to look at trophies.
No trophies yet, I’m afraid. ๐Ÿ˜‰
Let us start a new game!
The intro starts.
The intro continues.
Dale checks up on the papyrus.
They’ve reached the pyramid.

A tutorial is in place to learn the basics of how the game works.
Finishing level 2. You have match the three eggs with eachother and then the two others.
If you are stuck, you can always try out the hint-button. It will show you how to solve the current puzzle.
Level 3 is here.
Now level 4.
When you start playing, you create a user, so that you can continue where you stopped playing and choose which level to start on. You can only select levels you’ve previously completed.

So, how did it play?

I must say that this is one of the better puzzle games I’ve played on AmigaOS 4. It’s challenging, fun, and well made. As you can see from the screenshots above, the graphics is very nice. Looks polished! Controls are great too and there is plenty of information on how to play the game for new players.

I will not hide the fact that this is a difficult game. Some of the more recently released match-three (and similar) games are easier than this one, but for those looking to twist their brains a bit, thinking of how to solve puzzles, this game is highly recommended. ๐Ÿ™‚ I give Dale Hardshovel and The Bloomstone Mystery a big thumbs up!

Thanks for visiting my blog and see you in another post here on Gaming on AmigaOS 4.1. ๐Ÿ™‚

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