Posts Tagged ‘puzzle’

Impressions: Color Assembler

It’s a bold move when your options screen requires a working understanding of your game mechanics. Bold, and daft. But I’m going to forgive Color Assembler this enormity purely because its ataraxic atmosphere lulls me back into a state of imperturbable calm. I’m even forgiving how bloody confusing it is.

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Wot I Think: Parallax

As first-person puzzle games get more complicated, we have two choices as a species. To develop mightier, more powerful brains than ever before, or to just try not to think too hard and hope it works out. After the Digipen team that brought us Narbacular Drop opened up very apposite portals in our minds, the genre has run with it, leading to the brain-straining likes of Infinifactory, Void, Antichamber, Standpoint, The Talos Principle and Mind: Path To Thalamus. And as the concepts get more complex, the contortions our brains need to achieve get bendier.

I think Parallax [official site] might have given my brain a nasty sprain.

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Let’s Make Music Together: Cadence

We last mentioned Cadence [Kickstarter page] back in March last year, a music puzzler where connecting nodes allows pulses of tune to create looping patterns. I met up with developer Peter Cardwell-Gardner at GDC this year, to learn how the project is expanding its ambitions, and has launched a Kickstarter to help it get there.

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Badland Coming To PC

So barkin' pretty

Gorgeously atmospheric sidescrolling float-em-up Badland [official site] began life as a tadpole on iOS. It has made a fair few ripples since it appeared in the App Store, picking up a bevy of awards. And now, after much splashing about on mobile devices, the game is making a spring migration for the bigger waters of the PC, the – pfft. Who cares about consoles? Let’s carry on.

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Freeware Garden: MonoDi

A gun that only shoots in one direction might be physically improbable, but it can also turn any platformer that involves shooting into a puzzle game. That’s what’s happened to MonoDi, in which you puzzle, shoot and jump your way through 25 unexpectedly varied single-screen levels, each sporting functional if cute graphics, lots of alien eggs to destroy, and bits of badly spelled plot to read through.

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Parcel Force: This Way Up Is A Cute Puzzler

Here’s a rather sweet little puzzle game, that’s yours completely free. It’s called This Way Up, in which you roll a packaging box around tiled levels, trying to reach a goal tile. But all the while attempting to keep your cardboard cube facing the right way to be able to, er, fire purple blasts of magic.

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Freeware Garden: Petrichor

A nice, big red umbrella.

Éric Chahi’s Another World did many things right, but what I believe it really excelled at was conveying the feeling that you were somewhere drastically different. Somewhere otherworldly yet also sensible and at times familiar and this is the exact same sensation Sundae Month’s Petrichor manages to re-create.

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Sokobanology Lessons: Polyology

Presumably after spotting my request for suggestions of games to be played over a puky little shoulder, former Crytek UK developer Ben Parbury (Gridlock Interactive) got in touch to tell me about his first independent project, Polyology. A puzzle game that takes a handful of Sokoban and mixes it with a dash of Nikoli-style symbol matching.

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Freeware Garden: Over My Dead Body

The ghosts, the gunmen and the zombies.

Noel Brody worked for the evil Mortiga Consolidated, but never suspected that protesting the weaponization of her research would lead to her being murdered. What she further failed to imagine was that her death would also transform her into both a zombie and a ghost and get her to star in her very own game: Over My Dead Body.

Noel must now fight her way through Mortiga’s lovely-yet-deadly isometric corporate headquarters and exact horrible, bloody revenge on all the immoral bastards who killed her and are apparently about to kill more people for money. Finding a cure for her doubly-undead affliction, or possibly reclaiming her work for the good of humanity, should be considered an added bonus.

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Eigengrau Menagerie: Not A Collection of Sneezing Sounds

I swear I wasn't trying to sneak a peek of you in the bathroom, lady. Seriously. You're not even my type. I mean, you're pretty. But, I like them with skin and not - god, I'm in trouble, aren't I? Please don't -

Lifeforms? Lifeforms? The Eigengrau Menagerie is a classy place for deep cogitations and Thoughtforms, sir. Currently embroiled in the popularity contest that is Steam Greenlight, The Eigengrau Menagerie is a sumptuous little puzzle-adventure game, filled with phantasmagorical art and a literary soul.

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The Talos Principle’s Demo Will Test Your Humanity

You can now play a slice from The Talos Principle for free, if you like. Which I think you should, because a philosophical first-person puzzler from the makers of Serious Sam that seems genuinely awesome is as rare as a kirin in France. Editorial overlord John Walker says that The Talos Principle is a “surprising new direction” for Croteam. Gone are the guns, the manic humor. In their stead stands writing from Jonas Kyratzes and FTL’s Tom Jubert, neither of whom seem to be very frantic nor very frivolous. The “public test” will let you explore “four increasingly difficult complete puzzle levels.” Why? Because the developers want to use you and thousands like you for their additional stress and compatibility testing.

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Freeware Garden: Masami – Sushi Ace

One for relatively healthy food too.

It may have been a crucial part of Sega’s marketing strategy 20 years ago, but, inspired as it may have been, Columns never really came close to replicating the ridiculous success of Tetris. Chances are Masami – Sushi Ace won’t do much better either, despite it being a lovely take on the classic formula of the falling blocks arcade puzzler.

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Hexcells Infinite Is Out Monday, All Other Gaming To Cease

Alice woz ere.

Oh Hexcells. How I love thee. As a man obsessed with puzzle games, it is with no small amount of consideration that I say Hexcells is the best new puzzle in the last few years. I’ve jabbered my delight over both Hexcells and sequel Hexcells Plus previously, and I’m giddy-thrilled to see that there’s to be a third and final game in the series, out next month, called Hexcells Infinite. And it’s out on Monday.

…final?!

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Wot I Think: Dynetzzle Extended

Dynetzzle Extended may be the worst name of a game I’ve ever seen, but the puzzle is interesting. I took a look at the free 10 level version back in March, and now the full 25 level version is released, for a mere single dollar. Does it expand nicely into a larger puzzle game? Here’s wot I think:

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Rubik’s Surface: Flip

Take me out for a romantic meal and you’ll have to order that fourth bottle of wine before I reveal an emotion and even then it’s likely to warp into a desire to find a dark underground club that plays music sucked from the scabby centre of the nineties. A bellyfull of Pinot Noir and a blast of Longpigs, and I’m done – vanishing into the forest of bodies on the dancefloor. Not a cheap date, or a particularly satisfying one.

When it comes to puzzle games, I’m the cheapest of cheap dates though, as Flip proved to me a few moments ago. The free version of this attractive and perplexing perception-troubler contains ‘more than 20 puzzles’ but I recognised the potential limits of my patience after around fifteen. It’s clever stuff though and the full version, which is $2.49 (50% discounted) at present, offers more than a thousand conundrums.

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