Yankai’s Triangle – A Pleasant Geometry Twiddler

Yankai's Triangle

This morning brought geometric gaming news in the form of Yankai’s Triangle [official site]. It’s a puzzle game of sorts, where you rotate triangles with coloured points in order to match them up. If you’ve ever played Triominoes you’ll know the sort of thing I mean.

I say “of sorts” regarding its puzzle game status because there are puzzle games which genuinely give my brain something to grind away at, exerting itself to find a solution, and there are puzzle games which don’t really involve much puzzling but you are still ultimately looking for a solution. Yankai’s Triangle is definitely in the latter camp. I’m on level 36, I think and I’ve only found a bit of grit to the puzzles a couple of times. Once where – you know when you get comfy with the way something works and the designer uses that to pull the rug from under you in a teasing way? – that happened and it made me grin and have to go back through the triangles and re-order some of them. The other time was level 34 where the game introduced a new element to the triangles which made me employ a bit more thought when finding the solution than just manipulating the shapes idly.

As per Sun’s description:

“YANKAI’S TRIANGLE is a love letter to TRIANGLES. A puzzling puzzle game about the beauty and joy of infinitely tapping on TRIANGLES for some reason.

“With an elegant innovative revolutionary TRIANGLE-first approach to interface, YANKAI’S TRIANGLE lets you tap on TRIANGLES to spin them and stuff. Colors play a part in gameplay too I think. Bring TRIANGLES to a forgotten TRIANGLE, and uncover a TRIANGLE hidden deep beneath the YANKAI.

“(YAN rhymes with KEN and KAI rhymes with EYE by the way)”

But there doesn’t really seem to be a comprehensible difficulty progression so that new mechanic has disappeared again for the following two levels and I’m back to just twiddling triangles. I’ll be honest, without that extra mechanic I mentioned but don’t want to spoil, the possibility space feels too small for the player to need to work for solutions. At most you’ll just need to go back through a few layers of previously slotted-together triangles to rotate one or two of them a few times and that’s busywork rather than difficulty. But there is something here that I like and that I think has real potential beyond what’s actually in the game so far that I’ve seen.

The other thing I like is that the triangles slot together then let you zoom out to the next layer of triangles. In and of itself that’s not noteworthy, but Sun’s previous game was Circa Infinity which was about travelling deeper into layers of concentric circles, ever expanding until you reached the boss. There’s definitely an expansion and contraction of geometry theme here which I just really like as someone’s personal game hallmark.

Wait – I got to level 41 and that was more interesting. I think it was a boss level? The shapes had teeth.

Anyway, I’m flagging it up in case that puzzle-but-not-a-puzzle-but-maybe-sometimes-slightly-a-puzzle vibe appeals, or is something you’d like to share with a kid.

It’s currently on Steam with a 1% discount so £2.26/2,96€/$2.96 for Windows, Mac, and Linux, and also on iOS. Android is going to be a while longer.

From this site

7 Comments

  1. RaoulDuke says:

    Is the 1% discount a reference to something? I feel like it might be one of those jokes I’ve heard about.

    link to youtube.com

    Well, you all know what laughter sounds like anyway!

  2. Premium User Badge

    Captain Narol says:

    Sold. Downloaded it and gonna play it with my kid (he’s 5 and like colored stuff).

    • Philippa Warr says:

      It would be interesting to hear how he gets on :)

      • Premium User Badge

        Captain Narol says:

        He liked it for 5 mn and reached level 7 almost without help but then got bored of always doing triangles…

        Sadly, he has much more fun playing Candy Crush Soda Saga on his mother’s tablet (she doomed his soul already, poor boy)

        I kept on playing for half an hour and reached level 45 but got bored too so I’m going back to Football Manager for today…

        It’s a cool relaxing puzzler and I don’t have buyer’s remorse considering the very cheap price, but it’s missing something to be really addictive.

  3. theslap says:

    What about this makes it a puzzle game? I might be completely wrong but it looks like you can just spin each triangle until it fits and that’s it. Win by trial and error only?

    • Philippa Warr says:

      No, it starts off like that to get you used to the ideas but then you get to levels where there is more than one way a triangle might affix itself to another, so you’ll need to go up or down a level to find the solution, or pay attention to which colour are or aren’t features on the triangles a couple of layers up. It doesn’t ever seem to get complicated, but you do start to think about the colour matching element more as the levels progress.

Comment on this story

XHTML: Allowed code: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>