Platonic Puzzler: The Talos Principle

The Talos Principle is an attractive first-person puzzler from Croteam. The short trailer contains lasers bouncing off mirrors, crates being shifted around and Tetris blocks locking togeter in a pictureless jigsaw. These are the puzzle game equivalents of zombies, terrorists and Nazis. It really is a handsome thing though and there are two intriguing writers on board. Tom Jubert, of The Swapper and FTL, and Jonas Kyratzes, whose Lands of Dream games have been occupying a unique space in gaming for years. They’re writing “a metaphysical parable about intelligence and meaning in an inevitably doomed world” so I guess there might be a conversational potato?

I reckon it’s likely to end up more like Jonathan Blow’s The Witness than Portal. That said, I’m still not entirely sure if The Witness has one or two unexpected tricks up its sleeve that might make it a little bit unlike just about anything else. I look forward to finding out.

As for The Talos Principle, the following press release quotes explain what the game contains quite neatly:

Complex Conundrums: Overcome more than 120 immersive puzzles through the eyes of an advanced artificial intelligence construct and unveil your significance at the behest of your creators.

Anachronistic Juxtaposition: Deploy sophisticated technology furnished by the creators to unravel each predicament entombed within digital recreations of humanity’s ruins. Divert drones, disable turrets, and even replicate time to prove your worth beneath an ancient sky.

Croteam Technology: The Talos Principle is built on Croteam’s Serious Engine 4 technology, the next advancement in the engine behind the Serious Sam series, and a new proprietary method to scan real world locations and historical elements into the game world.

That’s all clear, yes? Apart from the bit about ‘replicating time’. Not sure about that. Probably involves a laser and a mirror though, or maybe clones. Out later this year.


  1. rustybroomhandle says:

    Come on Smiff, admit it… as a reviewer you are hoping that The Witness turns out terrible so you can refer to it as “The Witless”. I think movie reviewers often base their review on whether it fits into their pre-designated puns.

    • The Random One says:

      I have to say I really wanted Braid to suck so I could say it Jon Blows.

  2. WhatKateDoes says:

    Top screenshot and all I hear is “Perimeter… deactivated… Perimeter… deactivated… Perimeter… Activated. kersplodesploosh.”

    • Tekrunner says:

      All I hear is aaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.

      Seriously, ruins rendered with Serious Engine but no kamikaze around? What is the world coming to?

      • Dare_Wreck says:

        Yeah, along those same lines, I saw the top screenshot and simply thought that Croteam dropped some sensor/laser thingies into a level of Serious Sam 3. I don’t know if it’s an early screenshot that does in fact use SS3 objects as placeholders, but I did think for a fleeting moment that they were being lazy with their assets.

  3. Anthile says:

    That’s one strange Skyrim spin-off. Just kidding, The Swapper was great and it will be interesting to see what’s next. At the very least it will look good.

  4. Keyrock says:

    Color me interested.

  5. Vesper6 says:

    You had me at “The Swapper.”

  6. Myrdinn says:

    Terrible and powerful Talos! We, your unworthy servants, give praise! For only through your grace and benevolence may we truly reach enlightenment! And deserve our praise you do, for we are one! Ere you ascended and the Eight became Nine, you walked among us, great Talos, not as god, but as man! So rise up! Rise up, children of the Empire! Rise up, Stormcloaks! Embrace the word of mighty Talos, he who is both man and Divine!

  7. The Random One says:

    I don’t know what the fuck I just saw but it was fantastic. Or seemed to be anyway. Go Croatia!

  8. neckro23 says:

    What’s the deal with Croteam’s fixation on ancient Egyptian ruins? I mean come on, guys.

  9. bananana says:

    So, it’s a mashup of Deflektor, Sokoban and Tetris?

  10. Creaturo says:

    It seems like the developers are drawing heavily from ‘The Stanley Parable’ and that is wonderful.