Have you ever wanted to spend a few hours playing a game as a little robot solving puzzles? If so, try Unmechanical, the newest puzzler from Talawa Games. Playing as a little robot, you solve puzzles, open doors, and get upgrades. Doesn’t sound like a new idea, right? Well, that’s understandable. It doesn’t seem to have any special appeal or stand out from other puzzle games (that is, aside from the adorable little robot you play with a propeller on his head). That is, until you play and notice the details.
Unmechanical provides a very visual experience using no text or dialogue. There are pictograms, but more often than not, you’re going to be left confused and frustrated. To learn about the game’s backstory, you will have to watch it unfold piece by piece as you solve the puzzles. As well as obtaining upgrades on your way through the levels, which can be plain dank tunnels or even hellish magma caves (talk about hot and cold!).
To solve puzzles and unlock doors, you use your only real ability: grabbing and placing things. This makes it easy to play the game with both gamepad and keyboard. This not-so-original mechanics that we have seen many times in the past has a way about it that makes it seem a little different. Equipped with a short range tractor beam, you are able to grab and move rocks, mirrors, steel girders and, amusingly, flaming balls of death. While you have the objects in your grasp, you can position them in multiple ways to solve the puzzles. When you solve a puzzle, you receive Power Spheres. Power Spheres are used to power Unmechanical’s biomechanical devices. Powering these devices (that are oddly similar to human organs) will unlock new areas and puzzles that will reveal the game’s backstory.
Unmechanical’s gameplay stumbles a bit when you reach the pictograms. While they were probably originally intended to help, they are actually quite frustrating. This causes you to observe really carefully the visual clues leading to the backstory. Despite how frustrating they may be, the puzzles are actually quite enjoyable and clever (even if we have seen them in puzzle games a million times).
As a plus, the enjoyable puzzles are not the only cool aspect of this game. The developers really took time and effort to create nice, slick graphics, as well as animated activity in the game’s background. It’s not just the puzzle that catches your eye. As for the sound, the music wasn’t all that remarkable, but it was controlled very well throughout the game and the revealing of the story.
All in all, Unmechanical is a very cute, well-rendered puzzle game. Though it may not stick out too much from similar puzzle games, it can still entertain you for a short while with its backstory unfolding piece by piece, puzzle by puzzle, until completion. That is, until you move on to your next puzzler.