PS3/PSN (also on PC and some other stuff)
Well, more accurately reassemble Josef, our robotic protagonist for
this pointy-clicky-adventurey thingummy that’s been around on lesser
formats for a while now.
The first thing that strikes you – should you not duck quickly
enough - is the stunningificent art of Machinarium.
Reminiscent of Terry Gilliam’s work on his best days (and he’s no
slouch on his shittiest days), it’s an intricate hand-drawn affair
that’s completely, totally and utterly beautiful. But we kind of
intimated that a few lines back with our outbreak of hot portmanteau
Still, more than awesometacular graphics are needed to make a good
game. So, how does Machinarium fare sonically? Well, tunes
are funktacular, with enough bassiness to cause occasional pantsular
panic, as it veers ominously close to brown note territory.
Looks good, sounds good – and if it wasn't download-only we’d even
go the chomp to advise if it tastes good. What’s left? Oh yes,
gameplay. Umm, yes...
Being pointy-clicky, the left thumbsticky doobrie moves a cursor
about. You can only select things within Josef’s reach, be he normal
size or stretchy/squishy. Stuff you collect en route can be combined
to make useful thingies that allow progress, as you journey into a
city of lit-up traffic coney-headed cops and a triumvirate of bad
guys who’re mean-bean personified, wanting to blow up the city’s tower
and all. The aim is to plough through various static screens,
solving puzzles that regularly and effortlessly redefine the word
obtuse. Luckily you can avenge latent or flaming arachnophobia by
shooting spiders to score a level map which can help a little bit.
Ignoring the abundant prettiness, whether you love Machinarium
or hate Machinarium will depend solely on your tolerance for
mind-bendy puzzling. At times it’s mind-bendy in extremis,
which may result in shattered DualShock. Many fragments, some large,