A brand new turn-based puzzler, Abdullah Firat’s Hexanome has players outsmarting the AI in as few moves as possible. Its cerebral and serene nature create a unique atmosphere, but does it prove to be a worthy challenge?
Spread across 76 different levels made up of four “packages,” the goal of Hexanome is simple: collect all of the squares. This seems easy enough – the grid-based gameplay means that players just need to move a set amount of turns to get what they need. However, there is a constant threat that lies behind every move: the AI. Every time you make an action, the AI does one as well. Its weapon of choice is blockable cells, which prevent players from progressing.
Things start out simple enough, with players simply outmaneuvering a set amount of blockable cells to come out ahead. However, new concepts are quickly introduced. Later levels have players controlling multiple devices, using squares to freeze the AI’s action for that turn, hitting switches to undo these blockable gates, or even making a set amount of moves to open one of these dark-colored gates up.
It’s a lot to manage, and the playing field for most stages is a bit on the large side. Despite this, it oftentimes feels like there is only one main solution to each puzzle. Though this doesn’t allow for the chance to think outside the box, using the parameters the game requires can be entertaining. Finding out the way everything clicks offers a feeling of satisfaction is enjoyable, but it would have been nice if there was a way to see a hint beforehand, as some of the puzzles are a bit more on the obtuse side. An undo button is available at a moment’s notice though, and every move can easily be undone without penalty.
The game prides itself on its minimalistic aspect. Everything is made up of gray, white, and black, and the atmospheric music purposely does not stand out. It doesn’t seem to have its own personality, but everything does have a nice, clean style to it. The title was originally a mobile one, and though there are some sections of text telling people to “swipe,” the transition to a mouse for movement works as it should.
There is no leaderboard for this title, but there are achievements tied to completing each stage in a set amount of moves. Those that keep their movements swift will be able to receive a black dot next to their stage name on the menu – it’s not much, but it’s still a nice touch nonetheless.
Hexanome is a minimalistic puzzler that skews on the side of obtuse. Throwing players to the wolves without much direction is a bold move, one that will make or break this game for a number of people.
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