Pandora's Box Reviews (Windows)

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Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

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Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 4.2
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 3.9
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 4.1
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 3.6
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they're executed 3.7
Overall User Score (20 votes) 3.9

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Now I get to use one of those reviewers' cliches - I'm pretty sure it's the first time for me: Pandora's Box is an instant classic. Grab it while it's hot.
Pandora's box is a lot of fun. If you are a picture puzzle fan, this game is right up your alley. Occasionally, a puzzle will have a bonus associated with it if you can solve it in a certain amount of time, but for the most part there is no actual time limit. You're free to solve puzzles at your leisure and in any order you desire. To me, this is what a puzzle is - something to make you think about a solution without the pressure of a time limit or things jumping around the screen. I highly recommend this game to anyone interested in these types of puzzles. The game is well designed, user-friendly, and extremely enjoyable. Bottom Line: One of the best puzzle games I have played in a long time. The game includes hundreds of puzzles of varying difficulty spanning 10 different picture puzzle types, none of which are straight jigsaw puzzles. You may play in story mode or just tackle the puzzles individually. Highly recommended to any picture puzzle fan.
As I stated at the beginning of this review, if you like to do puzzles and are looking for variety or if you simply want something to provide a diversion while you wait for the release of your most anticipated new adventure games or if you have some family members that might like to gather around the computer to challenge each other's puzzle-solving skills, then Pandora's Box is for you. If you don't like board or slider puzzles coming at you one after another, then this game is not for you.
Gamezilla (Oct 12, 1999)
It's always encouraging to see a new puzzle game, but a real treat to see one as well-designed and well-executed as this. It isn't perfect, but it's close. With a sleek, elegant interface and addictive gameplay, Pandora's Box may well be just what starving puzzle game fans have been longing for; with any luck, it may encourage more quality entries into this almost forgotten genre.
In my preview of this game, I uncharacteristically went out on a limb and said that Pandora's Box "looks to be the very best puzzler I have ever played." Having played through to the end, I can say confidently that indeed I was right. There will of course be those, really not liking to solve puzzles at all, who dismiss this title as boring and call it just a glorified set of jigsaw puzzles; but in my mind these people are really missing the heart of what is presented, which should appeal to traditional and non-traditional gamers alike. The exceedingly modest minimum system requirements make this title truly accessible to everyone. When all is said and done, the bar has been raised for all future puzzle offerings in terms of magnificent graphics, sound and music, as well as absorbing gameplay. I give it a Reviewer's Choice Award without the slightest hesitation.
Techtite (2000)
The game's rating goes down merely a notch, for its replay limitations; once solved, there are no new puzzles, and no ability to generate puzzles using your own family photos (how cool that would have been!). Once you finish the game's 350 puzzles, you might indeed re-play the game, although most of the surprise is gone, and that's half the fun. It still is a spectacular, thought-provoking game (a term that becomes more of an oxymoron every day), which any puzzle fan should get immediately. If you're ready to scratch your head galore in a game once again, yet not ready to blow the dust off of your old copy of Zork, this is definitely a must-buy title...
Pandora's Box is meant to be pure fun escapist fare. There's no stress or hurry in playing it, and its design is such that it is a relaxing activity, kind of like doing a jigsaw puzzle was before the advent of computers. (Or still is for the electronically challenged, I suppose.) For anyone that likes puzzles just for the fun of it, it's definitely worth the money for the amount of fun packed in the package.
The other puzzles are various riffs on old themes, and are a competent caboodle. They aren't all classics, but even curmudgeons will be content with this comprehensive collection of conundrums. Throw the continuing dearth of good puzzle games and the global adventure on the fire, and Pandora's Box is a game no self-respecting fan of the genre should be without.
GameSpot (Oct 05, 1999)
Pandora's Box isn't the Half-Life of puzzle games, but it is revolutionary in a sense. It's not only a great way to divert yourself for short periods of time, but the overall sense of accomplishment you'll feel when you complete a series of its puzzles makes it something you'll go back to time and time again. And while the individual pieces may be a bit weak on their own, the overall experience is satisfying and worthwhile.
The concept of each puzzle is remarkably easy to master, and the learning curve is quite also manageable with a range of difficulty levels. Some will take a minute to complete, whilst others may need a few hours solving time. There are also bonuses (free puzzle and hint tokens) hidden behind certain puzzles, or if you meet a set time limit. Microsoft is gearing this one towards the female computer audience, but just about anyone of any age will find themselves hooked on this one. All in all, it's certainly no Tetris, rather a bunch of glorified jigsaw puzzles using stock photo images, but that doesn't stop it from being pretty damn addictive.
Tobt der Redaktionsschluß noch so um mich herum, die beruhigenden Melodien aus Frankreich, Hawaii oder Afrika ersparen den Gang zum Anti-Streß-Therapeuten. Nebenbei sind die Aufgaben wirklich sehr abwechslungsreich und machen Laune - und zu lang sind sie auch nicht. Allenfalls die vermißten Figuren setzen einem Nüsse vor, an denen man schon mal ein halbes Stündchen knackt. Ein Spiel für die ganze Familie, und trotzdem nicht öde.
GameBoomers (Sep 21, 1999)
This game is not for everyone. It IS, however, a game that you should definitely add to your collection if you enjoy puzzle-solving games, with no chance of "dying" in the game, and no time limit in which to complete the puzzles, or the game itself. This is also a game that you might want to reinstall, or reload whenever the 'urge' strikes you; sit back, relax and enjoy bending your mind with puzzles!!! :-)
GameStar (Germany) (Nov, 1999)
Microsofts Sammelsurium von zehn teils netten, teils langweiligen Knobelspielchen ist zwar nicht sonderlich originell, dank durchgestyltem Design und dem moderaten Preis aber jedem Puzzle-Fan ans Herz zu legen.
Game Revolution (Oct 01, 1999)
Alexey's latest development is a pleasant diversion, but it's nothing like his original fiendish masterpiece. Perhaps the best part of it is the visual treat of being able to admire and play with many of the world's greatest art masterpieces (the Louvre always gets mad at me). It's the perfect game to play on your laptop during long flights in-between rounds of ginger ale and honey roasted peanuts, but when you're at home with all your toys you'll probably be diverted and forget to open Pandora's Box.
Fans of jigsaw puzzles and Kai’s Power Tools will find some good rainy-day fun hero; others won’t be amused for very long.
PC Joker (Nov, 1999)
Eine Multiplayeroption fehlt freilich ebenso wie schicke Präsentation. Was bleibt, sind zweckmäßige Grafik, ein bisschen Musik und die wehmütige Erinnerung an Meister Pajitnovs Großtat aus den 80-ern.
Spel för Alla (Oct, 1999)
Nu bör jag väl även tillägga att jag inte är särskilt förtjust i Tetris heller. Därmed: Gillar du pussel så är det här säkert jättekul, men jag gör det inte.
PC Games (Germany) (Sep, 1999)
Geduldige Zeitgenossen, die ihre grauen Zellen auf Trab halten wollen, finden mit herkömmlichen Brettspielen und echten Puzzles eine anspruchsvollere Unterhaltung. Kinder, für die das Spiel wohl gedacht war, werden kaum die notwendige Geduld dafür aufbringen.