Summary: The features for scenes listed sound great. Worked well on my Olympus VR-340 that I replaced this camera with. However, on the SZ-12, those features I loved on the VR are a real bummer. They don't work. Pet scene - camera focuses on whatever it sees first and snaps the pictures before you even have a chance to aim it at your pet. Does reduce the "green eye" you get from pets but be ready to point and aim fast to get the picture you want.
Summary: I'm a daily camera user, and I got this on special to replace a Canon camera with similar specs because the Canon's flash no longer works. Unfortunately, 3 months later, I'm back to using the Canon more often than this camera. Now, the SZ-12 does do decently outside, both in daytime and at night. However, I was looking for a camera that would take nice pictures indoors as well, particularly of kids (who don't stay still to pose).