In the early 2010s, many first-person puzzle games followed the genre champion Portal 2. Titles like QUBE and Quantum Conundrum thus see the light of day, bringing their stone to the building with a concept of their own. Even today, it is not uncommon to see similar adventures unloading, proof that this approach to the puzzle still has a lot to offer. Today, we are talking about Relicta, which has just been released on Nintendo Switch.
A point on the PC, PS4, One and Switch versions:
If Relicta has just been released on Switch, it has been almost nine months since the title of Mighty Polygon is available on PC, PS4 and One. Obviously, on the Nintendo console, the whole thing is less pleasing to the eye, with a lot of aliasing and fuzzy textures for the most part. Not a big deal for a puzzle game. Thus, on PC and PS4, we have not encountered any particular problem. And everything is perfectly playable on Switch, nomadic and docked.
If one wanted to make a very questionable pun, one could say that Relicta has a magnetic charm. Because all the enigmas of the title are based on a logic of magnet. The character played by the player, Doctor Patel, is indeed equipped with a handy pair of gloves, capable of giving a positive (symbolized in red) or negative (in blue) attractive force to various objects, but also to make them insensitive to gravity. Practical, especially since the lady will have to go through a whole series of trials in a deserted lunar base, in order to unravel the secrets of the anomaly which gave its name to the game. A hell of a program.
Casually, the script and the dialogues occupy an important place in Relicta. After each enigma, a little discussion will feed into the scenario, for the time being quite anecdotal. Mighty Polygon tries to install an intrigue around an overpowered source of energy and the private interests of several individuals, but fails to captivate. Blame it on poorly dosed writing, the pace of which is dictated by the very progress of the players facing the puzzles, sometimes very full-bodied. Basically: it’s not easy to pick up the thread when you’ve spent 10-20min racking your brains. Note also the presence of a logbook to consult different sources of information hidden in the space base, between each level. But not enough to renew interest, in addition to giving a rather ordinary patina to Relicta, as does its artistic direction.
Star of the puzzle
We can therefore say without getting too wet that the great star of the title of Mighty Polygon, it is his puzzles, which are of course not limited to having fun with gravity and physics. Each puzzle will therefore consist of reaching and then opening a final portal, often powered by a switch. This is where the cubes, sensitive to the power of your gloves, come into play. With this story of positive and negative attraction, it is indeed possible to attract and distance two of these cubes from each other. (handy for catching / clearing one out of reach). And it’s even more enjoyable with the anti-gravitational function, which allows an object to continue its journey in a vacuum when a magnetic force is applied to it.
From there, the possibilities are more or less endless, and Relicta knows how to put them to good use. Despite a slow and slow progression, weighed down by an almost too large profusion of puzzles (it will take about fifteen hours to complete the adventure), Mighty Polygon greatly enriches its based puzzles as you progress, with the arrival over time of new elements, such as platforms that can be subjected to a positive or negative force – which paves the way for improvised elevators created using cubes – portals that the player will be able to cross without its objects and vice versa, teleportation, etc., etc. All the more accompanied by various levels (and sometimes rather pretty) and a scenario which, in spite of what one can say about it, tries things and increases in power. In short, puzzle game fans will still have plenty to do with the title of Mighty Polygon.
Hit or miss
With good points and bad points, you still have to know what to expect before falling for Relicta. Moreover, when we talk about fans of the genre, know that the title does not offer a help system, and you will have to rely on your ingenuity to discover the subtleties of the game’s mechanics. If the whole thing can be quite rewarding, this choice sometimes has the opposite effect, and is quite frustrating when you have the feeling of having scoured all possible and imaginable solutions. Above all, Relicta’s progression is very linear, and it’s impossible to put one puzzle aside in favor of another, like in The Witness or The Talos Principle. A point which contributes to giving a rather bitter aftertaste to the title, capable of good as well as less good. But still really worth it.
- Successful puzzles that renew themselves well
- A good lifespan for the genre (15h)
- Rather pretty, especially on consoles and PCs
- An effort on the narration to salute
- No help system despite linear progression
- Quite ordinary artistic direction
- Wrongly dosed writing
Tearing between good points and bad points, we feel that Relicta could have been even better than it already is. The sometimes clumsy narration, weighed down by the very linear structure of the adventure, the pace of which is dictated by the progress of the player, notably pulls the title down, as does the fairly ordinary artistic direction. But besides that, the enigmas based on physics and magnetism are a real success, with new subtleties which are put to good use as they go, as well as new obstacles which come to renew the whole. No program help system, so you have to be prepared to get frustrated with some puzzles, especially the more complex ones. In short, if you are not cold-eyed and are looking for a well-thought-out puzzle game with a good lifespan, go for it.
Brent Dubin, known as the Gaming Giant among Globe Live Media staff, is the chief Gaming Reporter for Globe Live Media. Having attended all the major events of Gaming around the World, he is sure to give you exactly the update related to gaming World you are looking for.