Information Is Beautiful, declares the name of a fine blog focused on interesting and clever ways to visually represent information and data. It certainly can be. It’s not looking half-bad in Metrico+ [official site], a puzzle-platformer coming our way following a debut on PlayStation Vita last year.
Its look draws from the modern infographic aesthetic, and puzzles sorta involve manipulating data with your actions. It’s a more energetic version of Peter Snow trapped inside BBC General Election datavis.
Moving and doing things in Metrico changes the levels, sometimes just cosmetically but also to open paths. You might need to jump a certain number of times or walk backwards, the datavis letting you know how you’re doing. Which makes them bad visualisations, really – if you have to guess at what they mean, then you’d probably be better off with a plain old table. I suppose that might make the puzzling less fun.
Developers Digital Dreams say this version “features lots of new content and the visuals have been completely revamped for the PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Instead of the worlds that use Vita hardware features, there are completely new unique worlds to explore with new mechanics and puzzles for the player to solve.”
The original would have players fiddle with the Vita’s backpad, spin it round for gyroscopic manipulation, and show its camera different colours. I heard it was a bit wonky but pretty fun, so I’m glad it’s coming to PC.
Metrico+ is due in 2016, some time from January to the end of March. Here’s an old trailer showing the Vita version:
I swear though, if another company e-mails me a 5MB “infographic” which is some pointless boring statistics about their product next to purely decorative pictures…