Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Squirt's Adventure (PC)

Today Super Adventures takes a look at Squirt's Adventure. Don't get your hopes up though, this is a port of a touch-screen iPhone pirate-themed edutainment game made for five year olds to help acquaint them with the alphabet. I got this as a gift from a generous friend, who apparently thinks I need practice matching up letters with words.

To be fair I can see why he'd be concerned; my site's gimmick this year is that I have to play games in roughly alphabetical order: a set of games starting with 'A', a set of 'B' games, then a set of 'C' games etc. But somehow Deus Ex 3 ended up as a 'H' game, Max Payne 2 got filed under 'F' and Elder Scrolls Online was thrown in with the 'B' games. You don't even want to know what I've got planned for the 'X' games.

Of course he could be honestly curious about how it plays! Far be it from me to judge him for his taste in video games. I suppose there's a possibility though that it was just really cheap one day and he thought it'd be a laugh to watch me suffer. Either way, the game was inflicted on me, so now I'm inflicting it on you.

(Click screenshots to open them up a little bigger.)

No intro for me to sit through this time; one click and I was brought straight to the map screen. I guess the developers just weren't interested in explaining to players why a band of pirates would be interested in finding buried treasure.

Man, this music sounds so much like it's from a Monkey Island game, it's got that... Monkey Island kind of tone to it. I suppose I could say the game has a laid back semi-piraty Caribbean style to its soundtrack, but really what I mean by that is that it's basically been borrowed from a parallel universe version of Monkey Island, recorded through a tear in space/time. Not that I'm complaining, it's actually pretty decent.

"There's treasure somewhere around here. What starts with the letter A?"

Aww Captain Dungee is so cute. He's putting on a suitably pirate accent, but they've sped his voice up so he sounds like he's on helium.

Though I don't like the way he's constantly bouncing around, scanning the ocean with his eyes. He's a shifty little pirate crab for sure. Also it's pretty messed up that he has a human skull on his hat I reckon. This guy hasn't been sailing the seas to plunder crab freighters or octopus sloops, no he's after us.

Speaking of vicious pirate battles, our ship must be up to something back up at the surface, as it's started raining horses and ears down here. Nothing beginning with the letter 'A' yet though annoyingly.

Well I'm not sure how playing I Spy is going to get us any closer to this treasure we're after, but I'll give it my best shot.

I clicked on an aardvark bubble and I won! Everyone's all very happy, except for the aardvark who now cannot breathe. I suppose the poor doomed creature was dead either way.

Next time around I had to click on two items beginning with 'C', and the third time I had to click three beginning with 'B'. I guess we're starting off down at the shallow end of the alphabet then, keeping clear of the higher scoring Scrabble letters for now.

Three rounds is enough to complete the stage, and I got a full three stars because I didn't make a single mistake! Hey the stars are actually starfish, that's a nice touch.

The next two stages have been more of the same so far, shockingly, though these bubbles are starting to speed up now. It's actually getting hard to figure some of these pictures out before they disappear off screen.

Hmm, that one has a tomato, eggplant and a carrot in it; well they're not all vegetables and they're not all fruits so... oh, it's gone already.

Fortunately there doesn't seem to be any penalty for being slow, so I can just sit and wait for something I do recognise to come along and still get my three stars at the end of it.

Hey, we finally got the treasure at the end of the first map! It's a "golden... dog", according to Squirt, though he looks more brown to me. The lil' octopus likes to yell out the name of everything I click on, which is a pretty impressive trick actually considering that they're both underwater right now.

Well this is a great result for a few minutes of item identification, I'll be sure to treasure this dog that I found locked in a chest at the bottom of the ocean always, but there's something else I still need to do before I go back to the ship...

I need to replay this third stage again because I only got two stars last time, and I am NOT getting two stars on an alphabet game made for five year olds! I'll never beat Super Ghouls'n Ghosts, Manic Miner or Haunted Castle, and that's fine, I've accepted that. But this is where I draw the line!

Okay, what is that heart with 'Be Mine' written on supposed to be? Chocolates or something? VALENTINE'S GIFT! Well that's no good, I'm not looking for 'V'.


Hey it's a "golden... nurse"! Wow, I can just keep opening up the same treasure chest by replaying the final stage? Forget those other two stages then, I'll never need to see them again.


There, I've got a golden queen, a golden nurse, and a golden dog for the two of them to play with. They're basically just stickers I can put anywhere on this screen. See if you can spot where I've hidden my blue octopus tentacle mouse cursor!

Okay, so that's Squirt's Adventure then. Nothing much left to show really, I expect, unless there's some kind of twist later on. And there isn't going to be, I promise you, the game is exactly what it appears to be.

Ugh, I should probably check shouldn't I? Onto map #2.


Well we're finally out of the water, but those mysterious bubbles keep on raining. Seems like they're being airdropped onto an island this time, for reasons we may never know. I'd make a Dharma Initiative joke here, but I'm not sure anyone even remembers Lost any more. This time the bubbles are dropping so fast they're overlapping each other and all the letters are in play so things are getting a bit c-r-a-z-y.

THE MOON! That's what that circle in the bottom left's supposed to be! Man, that's been bothering me for ages. I was thinking it was some kind of egg perhaps, some kind of blotchy spherical moon-looking egg.

And inside the final treasure chest, our brave pirate crew discovers... a golden rooster. Captain Dungee seems a lot more hyped about it than Squirt does. Or maybe the young octopus is just sad because I stuck the mouse cursor on his head and made him look a fool.

So that's it then. 11 stages in total over 4 maps, with 3 rounds per stage and 3 letters per round. You could finish the entire game in 96 clicks, not counting the menus.

But you can replay the treasure chest stages over and over, getting new letters, different bubbles and a new reward each time, until the game finally runs dry of golden stickers. Plus there's another feature that encourages replaying stages...

...a pirate shop! For just 600 gold doubloons I can get my octopus protagonist a pirate hat of his very own! Wait, 600 coins? I've beaten every stage in the entire game at least once and I'm only at 510 pirate dollars!

By my calculations I'd need to complete three more stages to get that cash, which is a full quarter of the game. And then I'll be left penniless again afterwards.

I also have the option to spend my hard earned treasure on some numbers or colours for my bubbles, in case I ever go mad and decide that I want the screen filled with the most boring looking objects imaginable.

Okay what I'm going to do here, is I'm going to replay those three stages, and I'm going earn myself 600 coins, and I'm going buy Squirt a little pirate hat, and then I'm never thinking about this game again.


Man, I think I've been looking at this thing too long now. My brain is so starved of fresh external stimuli that I've started to hallucinate. But does that Deus Ex game go under 'T' for 'The Fall' or just 'F' for 'Fall'?

Okay I admit it, I got bored with Squirt's Adventure and went playing around in Photoshop instead. Sadly you can't actually import graphics to add your own objects into the game. Those faces though, they're 100% authentic.

And that's it, I finally got Squirt his hat, every level has three stars, and I think I'm happy to call this done with. Yarr.


For a game set at the bottom of the ocean, Squirt's Adventure sure is shallow. It really is just about identifying the first letter of different objects for the entire way through, it never switches to a different game mode, and it never calls upon players to actually spell out an entire word.

Also there's no profiles, which is a bit of a shame as they missed an opportunity to let children start off by getting the right letter for their own names. Though considering how long it takes to unlock anything, it's probably for the best that the whole family will be sharing the same save game and the same pool of money. It would've been nice if there was a bigger range of accessories for Squirt and the Captain, so they could be priced lower and players could afford new a new item every stage or so instead of every 16... in a game with only 11 stages.

The game's well presented though and the music's nice, so maybe it'd be a fun challenge for the very young. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone old enough to confidently spell the word 'apple' though.

Leave me a comment if you feel like it, I'm always eager for feedback.


  1. TOEJAM AND EARL TOEJAM AND EARL D:!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. I have this awful feeling that Ray's going to hate it. I hope I'm wrong!

  2. Ray... Could you please play Skyrim? I know, I know, the S games are over, but now you're in T, so maybe...

  3. Ever thought of live streaming?

    1. I have, but I don't think I've got the PC or the internet connection to pull it off. I should give it a try though one of these days just to firmly crush all my hopes.

  4. I've live streamed on a 25 Mbps connection, it wasn't the best quality but it was still manageable.

    1. I have 0.56 Mbps upload right now, so I'm not really that optimistic. Seriously, my set up is terrible.

    2. Hmm.. so I take it you don't do much multiplayer gaming then as well? :P

    3. It's not actually as bad for multiplayer as you'd think. But no.


Semi-Random Game Box