February 1, 2013
Antichamber is an exploration and puzzle game that will have you saying, “Wait, what just happened?” Players are trapped in a maze which is mostly white with splashes of bright, vibrant color. As you navigate through the Escher-like world you find out that things are often not what they seem, or even what you remember them being.
Players are dropped into this maze and let go with nothing more than being told the controls. In the very first steps you are told to just walk off a ledge. However, when you do walk off the edge a floor starts appearing under your feet. Upon reaching the other side you will find a chalkboard with drawing of a baby taking its first step which says, “Taking the first step can be harder than the rest of the challenge.” You will find these little tidbits scattered around; some can be helpful, but I mostly found them after I figured out what they were hinting at.
As you explore more you will find you can’t trust what you see or what you remember seeing. Walls and dead ends might not really be there and you can just walk through. Or perhaps you want to go back the way you came but now there is a locked door there now instead of a hallway. Once you get a gun you can really start working on the puzzles, which will then open doors and paths.
There are various color guns throughout the maze, but you have to find them first. These guns are used to collect and move blocks that are in turn used to open doors. Each color gun will upgrade your ability to manipulate the blocks. For example, when you go from the blue gun to the green one you can hold down the mouse button to collect many blocks, versus having to click on each one.
The graphics to this game are very basic, but still sharp. Using a whitewashed environment for most of the world with bright and bold colors scattered around really helps to create a world of optical illusions that will have your brain doing flips. The game developer, Alexander Bruce, calls the world he has created Escher-like. However, I would say he made me feel like I was trapped in one of the Cube movies. I half expected to leave one room only to start entering an identical room while seeing myself exit the last room (this might only make sense if you’ve seen the movies). Overall I found the game very enjoyable and very addicting; it will definitely get you scratching your head.
Out Of 5
The graphics are simple but still sharp. The use of a simple color palette really helps keep the feeling of an optical illusion in the game.
The sounds all match up and the music is very subtle, but it fits.
The controls are easy to learn and easy to use.
With things always changing it really adds a level a difficulty to the game, which is really enjoyable. The puzzles aren’t too easy; in fact, some are quite hard, so you won’t get bored quickly.
I found the game to be really fun and challenging. Things change so you can easily find yourself back in a place you’ve already been, which just adds to the challenge. You can see the exit on the map all along the game's course, so it just fuels you to get there.