Machinarium Archive

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Machinarium Heading to PSN

A little robot has lost his girlfriend.

Revealed at the GameCityNights event last Friday, creator Jakub Dvorský announced that the point-and-click adventure, Machinarium, will be coming to the Playstation Network later this year.

Developed by Amanita Design and released back in 2009 for the PC and Mac, Machinarium’s story is based around a Robot named Josef who goes on an quest through a scrapheap city to find his lost girlfriend. Josef’s story is told through thought bubbles above the characters head; a silent pictorial story.

The developers have also announced that the game will be coming to tablets, in particular the Blackberry PlayBook which will be released in North America next month.

[From: Casual Gaming]

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TV and Lust Podcast: Episode 8

Has 2D gaming gone completely the way of the dodo?

In this episode of the TV and Lust video game podcast, Craig, Fran, Chris and Seth discuss Atlus’s upcoming horror-erotic action adventure game, Catherine, and Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep’s snubbing of PSN. This week’s topic delves into 2D and 3D visual styles in gaming. The team has been playing Chrono Trigger DS, the Ivy the Kiwi? demo, Machinarium and The Conduit.


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News Items
No Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep For PSP Go Owners
Persona Series Getting HD Title
Microsoft is Ready to Ban Halo: Reach Pirates
Sonic’s Mushroom Hill Zone Looks Lovely In 2.5D

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Machinarium First Impressions (PC/Mac)

Experience a new point-and-click puzzle adventure; Machinarium

With the artistic visuals of LIMBO wetting my appetite last month, I went on a grand search for some creative and imaginative puzzle games and I came across a true masterpiece; Machinarium. Created by Czech Independent Studio Amanita Design, this point-and-click puzzle adventure oozes innovation and possess some of the best hand-drawn visuals I’ve seen within a game in a long time.

The story is based around a robot called Josef who has been dumped on a scrapheap, this is where he re-assembles his broken body and sets out to the city. Throughout the game you’ll see parts of the story come together in the form of speech bubbles above the characters head. These silent pictorial stories will give you an idea of the plotline which I felt was extremely intuitive but also a creative way of telling the story.

This game is very much a 2D side scrolling puzzle platformer from the point-and-click genre. Gameplay is based on environmental puzzles and brain teasers; using items around you to complete the level, some of which have to be combined to make more useful objects. The character also has a limitation; it can only collect items within the character’s reach, so you’ll have to explore the level to pick up objects which will be needed to complete the stage.

Hints are given, but only one per area, so use it wisely. By clicking on the light globe in the top right corner you’ll be given a small clue, these hints are shown within the speech bubble, this hint is in simple pictorial form. You can also gain a more useful hint by playing a small shooter game in the form of shooting spiders and dodging bricks, this will unlock a full picture hint which is extremely useful as the puzzles get relatively challenging as you progress through the levels.

In terms of presentation, these gorgeous, imaginative and inventive visual styles and backdrops reminded me very much of the artistic works of games such as Heart of Darkness, Abe’s Odyssey and Metal Slug; these art styles alone really drew me into this universe. I loved the combination of static visuals with moving elements, for example, dripping water, steam, moving robots, opening doors just to name a few aspects I came across. I also felt the game held a certain steam punk and industrial style to the artwork which I grew attached to.

To coincide with the impressive art style, comes a complimentary soundtrack. The musical approach to this game is wonderful; ambient and techno sounds mixed with the sound effects of the environmental surroundings. This audio helps to keep this game enjoyable, charming and memorable.

My overall impressions with the game were very positive, the art style alone was solid, the puzzle solving was challenging at times but extremely well done and the characters and storyline was intriguing and inventive in execution. This is one point-and-click adventure you shouldn’t pass up.

Check out my unboxing of the Collectors Edition below:

[Direct Video Link]

Machinarium is available for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
The online demo can be found at http://machinarium.net/demo/
For more information head over to http://amanita-design.net/