Mekorama Review

Mekorama is a puzzle game with a literal twist.  Developer Martin Magni and Ratalaika Games have created one of the most perfect just pick up and play games to fill your free time.  You are in control of the fate of the small robot B who is trapped on a foreign planet and trying to make his way through the mazes that have been set before him. Your robot friend B does not speak but shuffles around the mazes as you guide him with your finger pointing the way to go all in hopes of reaching the goal and moving on to the next level.

Gameplay

The gameplay is very simple. You must guide your robot friend through cubic mazes all while twisting the levels and moving various slides and levers up and down or left and right to bring the aptly named robot B to the goal of the level.  Along the way, you must avoid pitfalls and dangers that will keep B from reaching his goal.  The overall layout and design of the game and its menu screen make it a perfect game for the Switch.  The menu to choose your levels is set up like a book so moving from the different types of levels is as easy as swiping the screen as if you were turning the pages of a book.  The levels are featured on cards that you must turn over and reveal as you complete the level before it.

Controls and Features

Mekorama’s controls are easy enough to learn. The game allows for play on your tv screen or in handheld mode on the Switch.  I found the handheld mode to be much more intuitive as you can use the touch screen to turn the puzzles rather than the use of the thumbsticks to move a cursor on the tv. You can use the thumbstick as a cursor on the screen to pick your levels then press the A button to choose what you want to play or use the touch screen of your Switch and your finger to do the same thing.  You also will need to slide blocks and twist the 3D cubic models that your robot is walking on all to reach the small red button on a star block that denotes the exit to the level.  The game allows you to use your fingers to pinch the screen and zoom in or out on the puzzle you are working on.  This is a great control feature as some of the puzzles are easier to navigate once you can get a closer look at them.

The game features a total of 100 levels that are divided into four different categories.  These include 25 Easy Levels, 25 Medium Levels, 25 Tricky Levels, and 25 Hard Levels.  The levels begin small and simple but grow in complexity as you move throughout the game.  As if 100 levels were not enough the game has a fifth page that allows you to make your own levels. By clicking on one of the Custom level cards you are taken to a screen with the various building blocks from the game and allowed to create a puzzle for you or your friends to try your luck at.

Music and Art

    The game has a unique and soothing music style that is repetitive and fits the gameplay both stylistically and aesthetically.  The art style is vibrant and subdued in such a way that the puzzles and the robot take center stage.  Set against a blank backdrop the puzzles contain only a few needed colors to represent the related cubic design.  The block of grass is green, water is blue, dirt is brown, blocks are gray or red to represent different types of building materials, and slides and switches are a bronze color to set them apart.  All of these colors contrast greatly with your robot who is accented in yellow to help him stick out from the puzzle you are guiding him through.

Final Thoughts

Overall I found the game to be enjoyable and a fun game to pick up and play a level or two here or there.  It helped that B the robot reminded me of any number of robots from movies or cartoons like Wall-E and Johnny Five.  My only complaint would be the need to unlock the puzzle levels.  In order to reach the more difficult levels, you had to work your way through all of the easy levels first.  I feel that some players may benefit from being able to choose the ability level they wanted to start on and move from there.

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