Hidden Chronicles Game Poster Image

Hidden Chronicles



Social hidden object/building sim with aggressive marketing.
  • Platform: Facebook
  • Price: Free with Microtransactions
  • Genre: Puzzle
  • Release Year: 2012

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Players use their unique gifts to explore the history of different objects and restore an uncle's estate, while tracking down the reason for his mysterious death.

Positive role models

Players are mentored by various confidantes and associates, but not all of them are trustworthy.

Ease of play

The game is easy to learn and play. Hidden object scenes offer unlimited hints, and the scenes are clear and easy to search. Players can switch to full-screen mode to make the scenes larger.

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The game sells a premium currency that is used to speed up the game and unlock exclusive scenes. Players are strongly encouraged to recruit friends to join the game by sending them updates and invitations.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Hidden Chronicles is a hidden object adventure game and building sim that is played on the Facebook social network. The game is free to play, but players can use a premium currency to speed up the game and unlock exclusive scenes. Players are strongly encouraged to recruit Facebook friends to help with completing buildings, which can create a temptation to friend strangers on Facebook. There is no objectionable content, but the game can be addictive. While this game could appeal to kids as young as 9, they will not be able to play it since Facebook has an age gate of 13.

Kids say

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What's it about?

In Zynga's HIDDEN CHRONICLES, players investigate the mysterious death of an uncle by researching ancient artifacts. This \"research\" takes the form of hunting for clues in hidden object scenes. The scenes depict the different time periods and places from which each artifact comes, such as a 19th century Paris bistro, a violin-maker's workshop in Italy, and a thieves den. Players must also restore the family estate to its former glory by placing new buildings and decorations, which earn \"estate points\" that unlock more hidden object scenes.

Is it any good?


Like Playdom's Gardens of Time, Hidden Chronicles combines two extremely popular casual game genres (building sim and hidden object game) in a way that should appeal to fans of both. In terms of social interaction, friends can visit each other's estates and leave gifts behind, or challenge each other to a minigame that involves finding as many hidden objects as possible in 60 seconds. A dull, dangling-carrot plot is the game's major weak point. As well, the constant prompting to recruit friends and post messages to friends' walls is relentless and highly intrusive.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Facebook's privacy settings, and why it's important not to give strangers full access to your Facebook profile, wall, and photos.

  • Families can also talk about the historical places that the player gets to visit. If you could travel back in time to anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Game details

Price:Free with Microtransactions
Available online?Available online
Release date:January 5, 2012
ESRB rating:NR

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What parents and kids say

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Educator and Parent Written byCommonSenseChristian May 7, 2015

Watch for Hidden Traps in This Game

Hidden Chronicles has since been closed, but I decided to post this review in case they ever bring it back, simply because I enjoyed the game very much and miss playing. On the positive side, there is some educational value in the game. Players are encouraged to find hidden objects, which can be beneficial for players who have visual issues or need to improve visual memory. The game's scenes take place all over the world and in a variety of locations, everything from high-end bistros to abandoned clinics, from libraries to mysterious attic rooms. There is also an intriguing murder plot and references to certain historical periods and events. As noted in previous reviews, the game can be highly addicting and potentially encourages players to befriend strangers to progress through scenes. This is part of the reason why I rated it appropriate only for teens. The other reason is that you must spend actual money to access the game's premium currency. This could encourage financial irresponsibility and might incite the taking of credit or debit cards if the addiction is deep enough. Parents from religious households also need to know that some plots within the game reference mystical, earth-worship-type practices. This isn't necessarily an issue for discerning teens but could be a concern. Some scenes also show non-graphic versions of blood (remember, there is a murder involved), and use mild swear words. In general, if Hidden Chronicles ever returns, I will be glad to revisit the game. You and your teens can too, but watch for the hidden doors into dim places.
What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Safety and privacy concerns