Mystic Emporium is the story of a young witch called Lilly who finally gets her biggest desire – to run her own magic shop. It’s a time-management game, so for those that have played games like Turbo Subs or the Cake Mania titles, you’ll be familiar with what you have to do.
Customers, who come in all shapes and sizes will appear at your counter and request something magical they’d like to purchase. These items range from odd spells and seeds to artefacts. You must serve each customer in a timely fashion to avoid them walking out and leaving you with nothing. The quicker you give them what they want, the more you’ll get paid. And money, my friend, is the aim of the game. You must earn a minimum amount to pass the level, or Lilly will collapse to the floor in a funk and you’ll have to try again.
The beauty of Mystic Emporium is it’s a bit more than just picking items up and handing them to customers. The various potions which are requested must be made first. So it’s up to you to consult your Magic Recipe Book, select the potion you want, then collect the ingredients, put a fire beneath the cauldron and wait until it’s ready.
Upgrades include bigger and faster-boiling cauldrons, quickly replenishing artefacts and a harp which will play soothing music to keep your customers patient. Some are more useful than others, of course, but it’s up to you to choose the right ones!
The time management factor of the game is broken up every few levels by a match 3 mini-game. You must match blocks of the same colour on the screen. There are three colours and the more of a certain colour you match and refill its meter, the sooner you’ll gain a bonus which will help you in the next level of the game. Pretty much pointless, to be honest, but it does break up the repetitiveness a little.
Overall, Mystic Emporium is a nice game. I wouldn’t say it’s wildly addictive, as the action is never quite mad enough for that. But the graphics are nice (despite a few spelling/lost in translation mistakes) and the characters are fun and cute. The sound is relaxing too – I found myself humming along to the tune as I played – always a good sign. If you like time management games and witchery and wizardry then you’ll pleasantly while away a few hours playing Mystic Emporium. If none of this floats your boat, then try elsewhere.