When I first read the description of Milo and the Magpies as being a point and click adventure, I didn’t have high expectations. Actually, I had fairly low, like, this is going to be similar to a free flash game low, expectations. What drew me into choosing this game though is the art style, and I have to say, sometimes it’s okay to choose a book by it’s cover.

Milo and the Magpies was developed by Johan Scherft, a dutch artist, and published by Second Maze. This game is just one of his many masterpieces. The rest of his work is very much worth checking out, especially if you, like myself, are amazed by the pieces presented in this game.

There are nine chapters/puzzles to this game, and each one is like walking through a painting, because well, they are. The story is, Milo is on his way home after some daily adventures outside when he comes across a magpie in his way. Milo being a cat, goes after one magpie, and then is chased by another, leading him further away from his home to some unfamiliar backyards.

With a little help from some unlikely friends, a lot of help from you, eventually you can guide Milo back to his own yard and owner. To do that, you’re going to have to solve a few puzzles.

The puzzles start out fairly straight forward, with a short tutorial telling you the basics of what you can click, and when you need to drag something. You start out clicking on Milo to scoot him forward through the first garden, while clicking on the magpie to move it into position. Eventually, after hearing a scuffle between Milo and the magpie, the home owner comes out to find Milo and helps him up and over the fence, and into the next yard. From then on, you are required to click things in a certain order to progress through each puzzle, which can mean getting Milo into a certain position, or uncovering a clue that will allow for Milo to move forward. An example of that, which I found to be terribly clever, is when you are trying to figure out the combination to a bike lock on the second level.

This particular yard is full of different things you can click on, including a picture of a wine bottle, paint brush, frog, and an apple. At first the picture appears as just an added bonus of the artistic skill of Johan Scherft, but upon further investigation of the yard, each of the items in the picture, are also present in the yard. And all of those items have a number on them. An arrow indicating the direction of the pieces in the picture, is also the order you must input the numbers on the bike lock, thus unlocking the bike and setting off another chain of events to help Milo return home. Every level has a puzzle similar to this, but different enough to keep you guessing, and I assure you, they are all solvable based on the clues in the game.

If it does take you a while to solve the puzzles, no need to worry, because the music that accompanies each level is so calming and relaxing, you might just find yourself stuck on purpose. Each level has its own separate track, composed by Victor Butzelaar, with the occasional audio clue to help with the puzzle. Though the music can lull you into sticking around in a certain area, don’t linger too long. Milo does have to return home at some point.

Milo returns home, with a little help from his new friends.

I felt a little spoiled with this game. Though it is short, and quite simple, it is worth more than the $1.99 it is currently being sold for. The artistry alone is breathtaking, and the story that goes along with it is just as heartwarming. I’m already planning a second play through so I can find the rest of the secret items hidden in each level. I can’t recommend this game enough, especially if you’re looking for a cute way to kill an hour, in the most relaxing way possible. 5/5