Funny Wood (also available for iPad) by Chillingo is a hidden object game similar -at least in concept – to the Where’s Waldo and Little Things games. The gist of the story – though it really has no bearing on gameplay whatsoever – is that a round, green character named Mossy finds a map that subsequently is blown away by the wind. The map indicated that someone was in trouble, so Mossy and his friends set out to find the map pieces.
Once the pieces of the map are found, they continue on the rest of their journey which includes 6 ‘worlds’ with multiple leves per world. There are, however, only 6 playing screens, as all the levels in each world take place on the same screen.
The 6 worlds are full of characters and objects, some of which are animated when tapped. If there’s one win for Funny Wood, it’s the graphics – if nothing else, it’s a well-drawn game that’s full of interesting characters and sound effects to watch and with which to interact.
Gameplay consists of a short, non-animated cut scene at the beginning of each set of stages, followed by several levels of finding small hidden objects in a scene. Players click on a ‘pocket’ to see what objects need to be found, then scour the screen for hidden map pieces, plants, tools, etc. Once an object is found, the player receives a little congratulatory message, and once all the objects in a level have been found, more objects are given to find, or a new world opens up via a short cute scene.
Unfortunately, the game is quite difficult which is made worse by poor tap recognition. Players are awarded one magnifying glass per level, which hunts down a hidden object. While some may view this as cheating in a hidden object game, it is all but necessary as some of the objects are so obscurely hidden they’re even difficult to spot once the magnifying glass highlights the object.
The difficulty level is increased further by each level containing a built-in layer of concealing objects such as clouds and bubbles, which not only obscure the view of the screen, but also requires players to move or pop them to search for objects.
Funny Wood HD comes with two modes: the main story mode, and a timed survival mode. It also comes with Game Center integration which includes leaderboards for both game modes as well as 50+ achievements. The look and feel of the game make it obvious it was designed for kids to enjoy, but the difficulty levels is such that many children could quickly become frustrated. Though it’s aimed at a younger crowd, Funny Wood HD is at its best when parents are children play together.