After Jenny Carlyle runs out on her wedding, she comes across a young woman named Jessica Carlyle who takes her to Primrose Lake. Not only do the two have a similar look but they have the same last name. They also find themselves entangled in the mysteries of Primrose Lake and the most famous family that defines it, the Carlyles.
Be warned that spoilers lie ahead. If you want to go in fresh, skip to the last paragraph. Anyway, I’m sure many of you have figured out that Jenny and Jessica are related. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t reveal this even at the end, preferring to drag out a forgone conclusion into possibly the second game. Unfortunately, that’s not the worst part. The worst part is that Jessica, for no reason, asks Jenny not to tell anyone that she’s in Primrose so they can pretend to be the same person. Since Jessica has wavy hair and Jenny has straight hair, this would not work. Yet, beyond all suspensions of disbelief, it does. No one questions why the same girl would keep changing her hair style over and over and there’s no talk about one of them changing it to keep up the illusion. In The Parent Trap, when two twins find each other, they choose to go to the other’s house to get to know the other parent. A plot point in both movies was that one of the girls had longer hair. That girl had to cut her hair short in order to masquerade as the other girl. Instead, be prepared for misunderstandings as the townspeople’s inability to separate the two causes everyone to hate them.
That’s right, there’s a series of misunderstandings in this game. The first comes when Jenny wants to get new clothes from Fiona, who talks to Jessica about it. Jessica, absolutely clueless, causes Fiona to think that she’s blowing her off. Then another incident occurs where Jake, a boy that Jenny likes, rents a boat to her from his sporting goods store. A few seconds later, Jessica appears in a different boat and, again, a town resident thinks Jessica’s blowing them off. You’re probably confused about why they’re mad at Jessica when it’s Jenny who interacts with the townspeople. That’s because the same person they are pretending to be is Jessica. I already explained that Jenny went with Jessica because she ran out on a wedding she never wanted to be part of, but Jessica’s going to Primrose Lake with a mission. She got a letter about the Carlyles, and she wants to investigate what’s going on. To throw off suspicion, she asks Jenny to run the café and pretend to be her. This backfires when she gets kidnapped by Chip and OX and Jenny can’t file a missing person’s report. Thankfully, Jessica manages to trick the dumb on, Ox, so she can get out but, if not for this ruse, they could’ve avoided this kidnapping altogether.
Eventually, the ruse gets found out and Jenny ends up in jail with only Fiona on her side, who forgives her when she realizes that it was Jenny who ordered her clothes. I do like Fiona’s character as she’s loyal to her friends and, when Ox tells her that a woman hit her, Fiona doesn’t mock him and, instead, insists on knowing who it is. Her finding out that it’s Jessica furthers her belief that it should be Jessica in jail rather than Jenny. While I do agree that hitting anyone innocent, regardless of gender, is not okay, the only reason Jessica hit Ox was because, as I explained earlier, he and Chip abducted her. So, I’d say she’s justified but Fiona doesn’t know all the details and she and Ox have been friends for years. Her taking his side is actually understandable.
I expect many people want me to bash Jenny for leaving her fiancé, Matt, at the altar. However, I feel that her reasons are actually understandable. Jenny’s marriage was arranged by her parents who gave her no say. She felt helpless when introduced to Matt and guilty that she didn’t feel the same way. In the end, she realized that she couldn’t marry a man that she didn’t love, for his or her sake. Unfortunately, we live in a world where when a man doesn’t return a woman’s love it’s understandable. Yet a woman who doesn’t return a man’s love is an evil b****. Jenny can’t force herself to love Matt and she shouldn’t have to. Yet her mother doesn’t understand this and, when called by Fiona to help confirm Jenny’s identity, kicks Jenny when she’s down. Which I’m not angry at Fiona for because she didn’t know how messed up Jenny’s mother is as a person. However, I will say that I don’t find Jenny’s story as interesting as the mystery surrounding Jessica and her family. I wanted to find out more about her and her family rather than learn about Jenny’s problems with hers. Unfortunately, we don’t find out at the end of the game, just bits and pieces but not the whole mystery, though Jenny gets to become a permanent citizen of Primrose Lake. As for the abduction, that gets swept under the rug like it never happened! Chip and Ox get to go back to their lives as if nothing happened! Considering they kept Jessica locked up with no food and water, I feel like Chip and Ox should be locked up in the jail!
The game play is time management with a little twist. Sure, you serve customers and clean up after them, but you only spend five levels at one place before moving to another place.
You do get to revisit the places as the story progresses but, in the middle of levels, you can take part in action scenes to advance the story. The action scenes are usually click and point but I found them exciting.
As for the levels, each of them comes with a mini-game and some of them are relevant to the plot. For instance, there’s this one mini game where Jessica comes back to town after being abducted and tries to get food at the diner. The owner, jealous of her success and oblivious about the abduction, refuses to serve her, which you get in the form of a mini game. Needless to say, after seeing what Jessica went through, it’s hard to refuse her anything. So, if this mini game took you a few tries, I’d understand. As for why you should complete the mini games, each one gives you diamonds, and you can use the diamonds to fix up the park. The park also has a family tree for the Carylyes which, unfortunately, only shows names and relationships. There’s no extra information about any of the characters, which was a real letdown.
This game is addictive and intriguing. I give it 6 out of 10; great except for one huge flaw. Do you agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments and feel free to request a review of your own, which you can do through the comments, my email, or my Discord which is suburbantimewaster#8733.