The Witness

PC - Rating: 9/10

The Witness is from the same developer who created the superb Braid. It feels like a cross between that game and Myst. Once again the game play centers around puzzle solving, but instead of time manipulation, you are solving mazes. I know what your thinking, “Mazes? Are you kidding me. Ever since the ‘Twisty maze of passages, all alike’ mazes have been the bane of every video gamer’s existence.” At first I thought the same thing. The first dozen puzzles are so easy that I assumed this was just going to be another boring walking simulator with challenges thrown in just to extend the experience a few more minutes. But then you encounter the next set of mazes which sprinkle in a few new rules (which you have to discover on your own) and things start to get more challenging. Get a little further, then you have an epiphany and realize not everything is what it seems. Perspective and your place in the 3-D environment start to matter. At that point I was sold and fully immersed myself in the world (this would make an incredible VR game).The open world structure allows you to try various challenges long before you know how they can be beaten. The island is big and there’s always easier puzzles to work on while you think things through. By the end of the game you will realize that the solution to everything has been right in front of you all along.

There really isn’t a story here but there are several audio and video clips to find that have an arty, philosophical sensibility that are more about mood than narrative. I didn’t manage to find everything. Note that if you are a 100% gamer, if you get to the ending, all the puzzles will be reset. Find everything you can before rushing to the conclusion.

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