With indie experimentation we are witnessing in some cases the rediscovery of three-dimensional space in video games, usually taken for granted as a simple faithful reproduction of the real world but capable of becoming a fundamental element of the gameplay itself, looking at it from a certain perspective. Or from more perspectives, as happens in Mekorama. Martin Magni's puzzle owes something to Monument Valley, clearly, as the latter was inspired by Fez and other games based on the ingenious idea of rotating the scenario and discovering new shots to find the solution to space-based puzzles.
Mekorama does not go so hard on the puzzle front, preferring a rather light and dreamy approach, also in this aspect similar to the famous title of Ustwo, staging a particular world made of geometric solids and mysterious mechanisms, in which a small and nice robot, animated in a masterly way, must move trying to find the exit in each level, avoiding obstacles, traps and enemies. Touching the screen indicates the direction to take but the protagonist can only reach points that are on the same floor or reachable through stairs, which forces you to use lifts, mechanisms and various passages to be able to reach the different points of the various maps. To find the way it becomes necessary to resort to the rotation of the screen, which allows you to see the levels from different perspectives, revealing hidden passages and mechanisms, therefore in the game an accurate study of the geometrical conformation of the structures is indispensable to find the right path towards the exit, having to do with vertical displacements that are apparently impossible.
Geometry, perspective and orientation are the fundamental elements of the Mekorama puzzle
Walking among the cubes
Contrary to what happens in Fez or Echochrome, Mekorama does not resort to optical illusions or to the spatial variations given by different perspectives to create new passages and solutions, therefore the puzzles are more elementary and logical, lacking that additional layer of depth given by the 'whimsical interpretation of the geometries, but this does not mean that the mechanics are too flattened, although certainly the game solutions are much simpler and less profound.
The greatest difficulty is therefore concentrated in the correct activation of the mechanisms and in finding the way inside the intricate geometries of the levels, rather than in the creative reinterpretation of the spaces, making the whole game more focused on exploration and precision of movement than on solving puzzles of a certain level. The opportunity for the robot to lose balance generates another element of sporadic difficulty, with the risk of falling outside the structures and having to repeat the level from the beginning. Despite the complexity of some structures, the level design in general is not such as to generate an always stimulating level of challenge but the variety of situations is also ensured by the presence of a surprising level editor that allows you to potentially infinitely expand the game solutions. , giving free rein to the creativity of users who find all the tools available to develop new challenges. In the end, we cannot fail to mention the absolutely fair monetization system adopted by the developer with Mekorama: Martin Magni does not ask for money to download his game, you can simply make donations in perfect freeware style. Compared to certain perverse drifts of free-to-play, this is another element to be rewarded for this interesting title.
CommentTested version iPad 1.1 Digital Delivery App Store, Google Play Price Free Resources4Gaming.com
Mekorama is a well-built puzzle with great charm, moreover free and enriched by an excellent level editor able not only to expand the contents of the game but also to create a real additional element of gameplay with its construction mechanics. The interpretation of three-dimensional space here is logical and not whimsical as in other titles, therefore the solution of the various levels may appear simpler than other similar puzzles, but the spirit of Mekorama is more marked by contemplation and relaxation, underlined by the graphic style simple but charming. Ultimately, a download recommended for everyone.
- Simple but well thought out puzzle mechanics
- Great graphic style
- Complete and pleasant to use editor
- Not very deep level design
- Some uncertainty in control
- A certain sense of progression is missing