G5 games are slowly working to bring their game archive to iOS powered devices and Art Mogul is one of the latest titles to be ported for iPad. Originally released back in 2011, Art Mogul brings an interesting mix of genres, but we must see if it manages to update things to 2013 terms and deliver an experience worth trying.
In concept, Art Mogul is extremely interesting: you take on the role of (big surprise here!) an Art Mogul, a person who travels the world to find rare, original paintings, purchases them for a price as low as possible and sells them to make a profit. A pretty interesting idea, no matter if you are an art lover or not.
There is a total of 7 cities that you can travel to in your search for top paintings and each offers you three possible options to make the purchase: an art gallery, which should be the top spot to search for more items, the Art Cafe where you can buy extremely cheap paintings (but they can be fakes) and finally the Auction, where you can either bid for paintings or fill in requests by delivering the required paintings.
Art Mogul also has a major hidden object game part, in which you simply have to find the required items on paintings in order to get a better price (in the Galleries) or spot the differences to see if they are originals or not (in Cafes). However, the hidden object part of the game is relatively small and not too challenging, with most of your time spent traveling from gallery to gallery, buying paintings and selling them to make a profit.
As if the game was not slow paced enough, the menus are very slow, with the transition from screen to screen taking pretty long (at least on an iPad 3), which makes things even more boring than they currently are. The music, soft and probably intended artsy is just plain boring after a little while and makes you want to go to sleep.
The graphics save the day in the end, with colorful, bright visuals in all your scenes and indeed some very nice paintings that provide the eye candy. However, you can’t have a top game just with nice graphics…
Overall, Art Mogul has an interesting premise and could’ve been a potential hit with its mix of hidden object gameplay and simulation. Unfortunately, it lacks any power and does seem a bit outdated, with the hidden object parts being extremely easy and with just very few items to find, making it as I already said more of a trip from city to city trying to buy and sell and less than a long, neverending pleasant experience.
Personally, I am glad that this game is free, because I would otherwise completely refuse to spend a penny to play it.
iTunes link: Art Mogul