Puzzle games can be difficult to pull off. You need solid mechanics that can be altered in subtle ways to change things constantly. Imprint-x, by Morgondag, not only keeps you on your toes and guessing, but it adds an interesting narrative to boot. To top it off, the price is very affordable.
There’s a robotic virus attacking what appears to be inter-planetary miners, putting them in comas and laying waste to the work force. It’s up to you to hack into their minds and free them from the Wardens. While you won’t delve much deeper than that, there’s a great sense of mystery in imprint-x. It has a 2001: A Space Odyssey feel that drives you forward into the unknown.
Each puzzle consists of pressing buttons in the correct sequence. It’s so simple yet not, and once you’re past the first few beginner stages you’ll quickly learn how difficult and clever this game can be. You only have so many button presses (functions) in each stage, so screw up too much and you lose a life. Completing enough stages will net you more lives, granting them faster the better you do. It’s still a bit of a race though, because I can guarantee you’ll get stuck at some point. Overconfidence is a killer, and random button presses will only get you so far.
“Even the paths to show your progress for each patient are cool, consisting of what looks like tree branches or a neurological network.”
Boss or end stages change things up as well, often involving a more rhythmic demand for functions. Just when you’re getting comfortable, imprint-x has a habit of changing up the game significantly while using the same mechanics. By the time I reached my first boss, I was hooked. Overall, there’s a great sense of satisfaction and a feeling of intelligence you get from moving ever forward and delving into the minds of the sick.
Visually you tend to get a single object in the middle of the screen which needs to be opened or put back together. The colors and drawn look of these objects against the dark and mysterious cosmos really stands out in a good way. Your mind isn’t going to be blown by particle effects or hyper-realistic shaders, but it looks great and suits the gameplay. The soundtrack good too, and available as a separate purchase for anyone looking to add it to their collection. Something that really impressed me, despite being simple yet again, was how elegant and easy to navigate the UI is. Even the paths to show your progress for each patient are cool, consisting of what looks like trees branches or a neurological network. It all just fits the theme and nothing seems out of place.
With almost nothing to complain about and a very low price, the only thing left to ask for with imprint-x is more options an more levels. For a PC game, there are hardly any options at all which is a tad disappointing. You do have your classic options like windowed mode and resolution settings, but that’s about it. In that sense it does feel more like a browser game, but let’s be real here, it costs roughly five dollars. What’s packaged in is more than fair.
If you like puzzle games and brain teasers, imprint-x is absolutely for you. I would even go so far as to say that if you have friends who enjoy physical puzzle boxes but don’t stray too far into the digital realm, this could be the game that gets them hooked. So do your part and delve deep into the subconscious, ridding minds of their Wardens and bringing peace to your patients. Imprint-x is definitely worth a buy.
***A PC code was provided by the publisher***
- Low price
- Lots of puzzles
- Simple and elegant UI
- I want more
- Very few options