Vessel… Strange name for a strange game based in strange world with strange rules and strange concepts… And properly enough, created by a company named “Strange Loop Games”.
This is a very imaginative game suitable for people that enjoy brain challenges, but also some action. The combination of puzzles and platforming work well and the main gameplay mechanic is an absolutely amazing idea – I love it!
The game starts a bit dark for my taste. This is quite literally – the graphic is situated in factories which are pitch black. That is all about I can say as far as criticisms are concerned. Everything else in the game works!
The basic concept is simple. One “mad” scientist/inventor named M Arkwright created “liquid automaton FLURO”. These FLUROs are used very cleverly by the game designers as tools, weapons, enemies and co-workers and more. It takes a while until you grasp the basic concepts of how these things work in this strange realm, but it’s great fun. It helps if you have some degree in physics as my first impressions are that there is a lot of physics understanding implemented in the game concepts. Thumbs up for the efforts made in that aspect.
In the game you take the part of the inventor M Arkwright and you have to regain the control over your rampant invention. It is simple task initially, but it gets more complicated when the FLUROs are loose in environments and there’s a lot of crashing, slashing, smashing and….. um….. dashing. As you maybe already guess it – the factories that you visit are a great place for these kinds of puzzles. At first its challenging but enjoyable trying to stay alive let alone to find solutions to some of the problems. And all you have to fight back is a… water rifle. So people who practiced watering their grandma’s plants from 3 meters with a water gun have some serious advantage.
Although the game is intuitive enough once you understand the basics of the physics based puzzles, it seems like there is no tutorial at first. This isn’t the case though as the step by step tutorial is incorporated in the first few puzzles of the game. As you advance through the levels a range of more advanced abilities unlock. Every one of them is explained in due time.
The puzzles are challenging both in their solution and execution. It is not enough just to find the right solution to the puzzle, you have to make it work as well which can be just as hard.
The combination of tricky physicas puzzles with action may not be everyone’s “cup of tea”, but the core game is so fun everyone should give it a go before dismiss it.
In addition from what I have seen it is suitable for children as there no real graphical violence of any kind yet it keeps their brains working.
9 slimy jellyfishy thingies out of 10