I’m a huge fan of indie games, especially ones that provide a unique experience. Whether that experience is gameplay, story, art, or a combination of all three, I’m always surprised by what indie developers can come up with. That’s true of this latest game from indie developer, William Chyr Studio and their award-winning exploration puzzle game, Manifold Garden. Manifold Garden is a game that reimagines physics and space. Witness infinity in first-person, and master its rules to solve physics-defying puzzles. Cultivate a garden to open new paths forward, where an eternal expanse awaits.
At its core, Manifold Garden is an environmental puzzle game, not unlike similar games, Q.U.B.E. and Portal. Basically, you need to find your way out of certain rooms in order to progress. This usually requires the use of special colored cubes that can only be placed in a certain direction based on which way gravity is at the moment. These cubes usually need to be placed in special receptacles in order to open doors.
While this might sound simple, it’s not because you must also contend with controlling gravity. You can pretty much walk on any surface, regardless of the direction. What is neat is that you really need to think differently when it comes to gravity. There’s really no such thing as up or down here and you can literally “fall” in any direction. That opens up the game infinitely as you’ll see when you play this. Manifold Garden requires that you throw all preconceived notions of space and physics out the window.
While the gameplay in Manifold Garden is very good, it’s the art style that I believe really steals the show. Manifold Garden features some incredible architectural designs that are simply just amazing. These are akin to designs you’d see by M.C. Esher where they seem to defy the laws of physics and everything seems so precise and mathematical. Manifold Garden is very much like that where everything you see seems to defy reality. The environments seem to go on and on in all directions. This really is a gorgeous looking game and one that the developers should be really proud of.
While Manifold Garden at first seems like a “me too” style environmental puzzle game that does take some cues from others, you’ll soon find that it’s much more than that. The world itself is just so beautiful and is the real star of the show. It’s such a trippy thing to see and you honestly sometimes get turned in such a way where you don’t even know what right-side-up is anymore, but that’s the genius of this game. Thinking outside the box is what will get you through Manifold Garden.
Manifold Garden is available now on the Nintendo eShop.
Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes. (Disclosure Policy)
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