The mysteries that players solve in this game are fun -- for the most part, if you can get around the random limits placed on play. Cases in Mysteries of the Past progress quickly at first, and characters walk you through each step, which helps prevent confusion. The app includes a number of elements that should help keep players from getting lost: Crime scene objects wiggle to help you find them, and players can also ask for a hint. Clues, such as the killer being right-handed, pop up after they've been mentioned to drive the point home, and they're recorded on a tablet, which can help you keep track of major case developments.
You need stars, though, to conduct some parts of the investigation, which are earned by getting a certain number of points. Stars don't carry over from case to case and can require hundreds of thousands of points to earn -- it can take multiple rounds of finishing a puzzle or finding crime scene clues to get a single star -- so it isn't hard to run out of them. If that happens, players can find themselves in a waiting game, with nothing to do except re-examine the same crime scene for new clues to earn more points, which can get old. They can pay to speed up autopsies and crime scene object analysis, or buy coins, which, in theory, can be used on boosters that will help increase their point total so they can eventually obtain more stars, but parents may not be thrilled about the expense. Offering more ways to earn stars would let kids play continuously and make Criminal Case: Mysteries of the Past a more enjoyable experience, but as it is, it's a fun mystery solving app that will keep you busy for hours.