Hidden Chronicles

Common Sense Media says

Social hidden object/building sim with aggressive marketing.





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
Privacy & safety

Some privacy concerns: Certain buildings can only be completed by recruiting Facebook friends or spending premium currency, which could encourage kids to befriend strangers on Facebook.

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.

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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?Not available online
Release date:January 5, 2012
ESRB rating:NR for (Facebook)

This review of Hidden Chronicles was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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