Enhance has released some of the greatest and most unique puzzlers to date. Tetris Effect: Connected took the iconic title to all new heights, combining music and gameplay to create an awe-inspiring experience, while Rez Infinite rebooted and perfected a classic. Developed by THA Limited, Humanity looks to follow the same path and deliver a puzzle extravaganza like no other. With its quirky concept and distinct design, could this be your next addiction?
As a dog, your task is to guide the mindless horde of humans toward a pillar of light. Although there are light narrative threads to give purpose to your objective, the game places its addictive gameplay at the forefront. Themes of the afterlife and purgatory permeate to give the game an otherworldly, ethereal atmosphere, however, its focus on innovation and gratifying conundrums is what makes the game truly special.
A Modern Maze
Levels are small with interesting and delightful concepts. Each area includes a spark of imagination that continues to surprise throughout the runtime. Puzzles start simple. You place markers on the terrain to avoid obstacles and guide humanity to your desired location. However, new elements are quickly introduced, allowing you to toy with gravity and direct the crowd to leap and climb through progressively harder areas. Although the number of commands that THA Limited introduces in quick succession might sound daunting, its implementation makes it easy to get to grips with. Each stage gives you access to the abilities you require to complete the level. This means you don’t get overwhelmed with mechanics and can focus on how to utilize the tools at your disposal.
Positioned throughout are large, golden characters which often require elaborate routes to collect them all. While a certain number of these are needed to progress, collecting them all will unlock additional customizable and other extras. This adds a nice layer of strategy and replayability to the game. Due to this, trial and error is commonplace and fortunately, Humanity includes systems to support this. You can quickly restart a level, wiping all markers or leaving them there to tweak for the subsequent journey. This is a great option as it allows you to easily meddle until you solve the puzzle.
The difficulty slowly increases throughout as levels get more complex. Due to this, there is a real sense of achievement when you complete areas that house an array of complications. Inbuilt within the game is a solution video. While I would have preferred a hint system to guide you rather than just the answer, this does add a level of accessibility. Instead of scouring YouTube to learn how to complete a puzzle, you’ll be able to overcome issues in the game which increases engagement.
In addition to the 80-plus stages is a level editor. All the mechanics are at your disposal which will undoubtedly lead to some incredible creations. Games that allow you to create your own content tend to thrive and often produce even more imaginative experiences than the main game. Already, an array of interesting ideas are populating the servers which adds longevity. So, whether you want to create or try out the oddities that emerge, this mode is definitely worth keeping your eye on.
You can also play each level in VR. The relaxing ambiance and hypnotic soundtrack make this an absolute joy in the virtual realm. The world shrinks to appear almost like a toy beneath you. Due to the overhead perspective, you can easily scan the area to work out the optimal path to your destination. Although the VR mode doesn’t drastically alter the experience, it does add an additional level of immersion. While this mode engrosses you in the conundrum, it was the impromptu multiplayer which was a highlight. As I played, my family slowly gathered, offering suggestions on how to complete the stage. Although there isn’t a traditional multiplayer mode, the game lends itself to communal sessions and even excels in these scenarios.
Humanity is weird and wonderful. Like all great puzzlers, its premise is simple and the challenge steadily grows. THA Limited continues to innovate throughout the entirety of the game and manages to couple each triumph with jubilation. The odd difficulty spike may leave you perplexed, and a hint system rather than a complete solution would have been beneficial, however, this puzzler is one of the best in recent times and is a must for fans of the genre.
***PS5 code provided by the publisher***
- Innovative Ideas
- Continues to Evolve
- The Solution Video
- Ambiguous Narrative
- Some Difficulty Spikes