Are you lost, readers? I’ve only wandered briefly through Manifold Garden‘s recursive puzzle labyrinths, but I’m afraid to say I am too. Oh, well, at least it’s a gorgeous place to find yourself stuck in. If you’re better at thinking your way out of a tight spot, you might even find yourself breezing through William Chyr’s beautiful void, with Manifold Garden finding a new home on Steam and Itch today.
Okay, yes, it’s been on the Epic Games Store for the past year too.
A years-long passion project from Chyr, Manifold Garden is a 3D puzzler about a world that’s shifting and rotating all around you. While it’s quite a neat puzzler in terms of how it plays with perspective and gravity, the real draw is in the worlds you’re brain-teasing your way through. See, Manifold Garden’s worlds are massive, infinitely terrifying, recursively folding in and across themselves while you finagle your way through their labyrinthine chambers. It’s a hell of a thing to look at, and screenshotting any moment of gameplay practically guarantees a new desktop wallpaper.
Alice Bell might’ve reckoned it more a horror game than puzzler in her Manifold Garden review, and that it maybe wears out its welcome a little too soon. Even so, she had to concede that it is indeed quite a stunner.
“Manifold Garden is beautiful. It’s also one of a few ‘you’re on the wall now lol’ games that makes me marvel at the skill they must require to design. Making a puzzle that needs you to think in a lot of different dimensions must require the ability to think in even more dimensions to dream up. Still, the challenges so start to get a bit rote after a while, with perhaps too much time left in between new things being introduced.”