Something a little bit different today, I’ve been playing a computer game! A colleague recommended Machinarium to me after I’d shown him The Art of Alice. It’s a simple point and click, Flash based puzzle game which means it will run on the most basic of computers.
Simple does not mean bad or boring. Machinarium is charming, funny and it parts quite tricky to solve. I haven’t quite got to the end yet but it’s something you could complete in a weekend or play a few scenes a day and still get enjoyment out of it. The robot is on a mission to rescue his girlfriend and save the city. If you leave him doing nothing for too long, you’ll start to see his memories appear in thought bubbles above his head and they really are quite sweet. He also quite likes to dance!
There’s no dialogue but it has an original soundtrack that comes with the collector’s edition on a separate CD (which, in the UK at least, is cheaper than the download). I’m not very good at classifying music but it’s quite ambient and I think I would listen to it now and then. It also came with a walkthrough guide in the form of concept drawings; very handy when you get stuck as they’re not always obvious answers. You even get a chance to play space invaders in the robot arcade!
The images pictured here are actual screenshots from the game. Machinarium is an indie game from Amanita Design, founded by Jakub Dvorsk after finishing art school. You might be able to tell by now that I have a soft spot for superb illustration and that extends to games too. This is just lovely to look at and you can tell it’s been conceived from an artistic background over a techie one.