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Artistic puzzle games

The witness screenshot

Even if you don’t like puzzles, you should give these two games at least a try

I think the only puzzle game I played was Portal 1 and 2. The reason why I don’t play puzzle games is because I don’t like to get stuck on hard puzzles โ€“ it makes me feel stupid.

But then I tried these two games…

๐Ÿค– The Talos Principle

As I said, the frustration of being stuck in a puzzle is not my cup of tea. I thought Talos would be even harder. It is harder, yes, but no puzzle requires you to be clever or use a trick. You have all the information you need to solve the puzzle.

Sometimes when you enter a puzzle it might be scary. You might say “this is so complex, so many moving parts, there’s no way I can do this”. But you can! Just take your time, try different approaches and eventually you will figure it out by yourself.

The complexity and mechanics scale very well along over 40 puzzles. If you are stuck, leave that puzzle and go to the next, or stop playing and return the next day. It really works! I think I only had to cheat check the solution for 2 of them.

The Talos Principle screenshot
]2 The Talos Principle

But there’s more!

Tying it all together is this philosophical background, of what is means to be human and what is our purpose. During the whole game you will have deep text chats with an AI. I found myself saying “I can’t prove you that I’m a human”.

The Talos Principle screenshot
]3 The Talos Principle

Also, throughout the levels you will see this QR codes, with messages from “previous players” (not real players, as the game is single player, but characters that tried the same level as you as part of the story).

The build up to the ending was amazing. You have a choice to make and different endings based on that choice and your previous interactions with the AI. This game is like a brain gym. I enjoyed every hour of it. Highly recommend it.

๐ŸŽจ The Witness

The witness screenshot

Visually is gorgeous, itโ€™s like a dream or a painting. There’s no soundtrack, so you only hear the natural noises of your surroundings and your steps. The environment is very chill. The puzzles, not so much ๐Ÿ˜…

The puzzles start simple and quickly ramp up. The main rule is draw a line from point A to point B. Each puzzle teaches you a new aspect of the main rule, a slight variation. Each zone of the game has its own twist on the main puzzle mechanic. Solving puzzles via brute force won’t work, you really need to understand the rule of that zone.

The witness screenshot of a landscape
]4 The witness (is that just a reflection in the water, or something else? ๐Ÿ˜)

Sometimes, you need to pay close attention to your surroundings or you need to change perspective to solve it. Some levels felt like an escape room, the answer was right in front of me yet I didn’t see it and then it clicked! :slightly_smiling_face:

tl;dr

Anti chamber Superliminal Manifold garden Baba is you

  • The witness: Beautiful, relaxing, exercises awareness, creativity, logic, attention to detail (Trailer)
  • The talos principle: Brilliant writing, thought provocative, introspective, exercises planning: (Trailer)
  • Antichamber: Might be boring if you play alone, but itโ€™s great if you pair; exercises persistence, memory and lateral thinking (Trailer)
  • Manifold garden: Cool and mindblowing vistas, exercises planning, simple puzzle mechanic but sometimes has difficulty spikes (Trailer)
  • Superliminal: Exercises perspective and illusions (Trailer)
  • Baba is you: Interesting mechanic, exercises creativity and planning, gets very hard very quick โ€“ I gave up (Trailer)