Tuesday, 9 September 2014

So I have been playing... (33). Machinarium

Right after completing my recent Fallout playthrough, there was a great wave of let's-play momentum left over; basically my brain stated "must, need to begin a new game right damn now!" I rummaged through my game libraries in search for something completely different in tone and theme; after a few false starts I settled on Machinarium.

Not exactly the world's number one puzzle fan (indirect Czech Connection bonus!) I decided to treat the gameplay as a possible not-in-my-element-and-learning-from-it experience. Once in there, though, my first reaction was sheer delight over how they handle the instructional aspects. I found communicating the objectives, as well as giving feedback for (wrong) actions so elegant and well-targeted that I allowed myself a little professional squee. Also, most "puzzles" turned out to be of the variety I'm okay with - the "find a way to solve this situation" kind, rather than "put the correct elements into the correct configuration in correct sequence for the correctness' sake" kind. (That said, the "kind I'm okay with" will never-ever-fucking-ever extend to slider puzzles. Slider puzzle is the mind killer. Slider puzzle is the little death. When I'm faced with slider puzzle, my instincts tell me to immediately quit the game and never return.) Funny thing is, the occasional player reviews I read, expressed quite the opposite sentiment: where my overall impression went along the lines of "ooh, solving these situations really makes sense in-world, so much unlike typical puzzles," several other players kept saying how the "puzzles were illogical." Maybe it's just the difference in "puzzle-solving" and "problem-solving" thinking modes; or perhaps I've yet to reach those parts in the game.

Traversing the robotic landscape also brought on some reminiscing thoughts on Primordia. I found that I didn't really even want to compare the two. Instead I settled on a musing how two games can take a very similar basic premise (a robot, finding himself in an unfortunate predicament, must find his way into a city to save the day, and possibly slap some opponents in the process) and turn it into completely different games.

Anyway. Here's the firstst recorded episode.

Here's another one... 

... and the whole playlist is over here.

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