Sometimes a title will pop up which will seem so ordinary on the surface. It is a game you may overlook as the genre may not appeal to you however, The Bridge is something truly special, a hand-drawn experience that will aesthetically appeal to a lot of gamers.
Released by The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild (August 2015), The Bridge is similar to most puzzle platformers in that you progress through challenges of varying difficulties, all to find the key which unlocks the next stage & whilst this may remind some gamers of older puzzle games like Ilomilo or The Adventures of Lolo, The Bridge tackles the genre in its own way.
We start as an unnamed man who is woken when an apple hits his head. If you thought of Newton when you read that statement then you may like this game which relies on logic & physics to provide the entertainment, all presented in a greyscale world which is more vibrant and visually satisfying than a lot of titles.
The actual physical controls are very simple. There is little that the player needs to learn and there is no tutorial, instead the player is able to control the rooms themselves.
Ability to guess the right rotations & manipulate the game into doing what you want it to do is the challenge here, gravity can be your enemy or friend and whilst not violent (Rated: E for everyone), there are things that can harm you as you move through its storyline.
The beauty of this game is in its design. The rooms are geometric and repetitive. They twist & turn on themselves in a very organic manner, one moment you could be walking through an Escher kitchen & the next you could be greeted by a Cubist library, making the Bridge a very intriguing game to play.
The puzzles are thought-provoking and the very art style appeals to me. I love hand drawn games, the symmetry in some of the levels is very satisfying and for a 2D world, it is incredibly stimulating and inviting to look at.
The soundtrack further adds to the appeal, instruments like flutes are the only sounds you will hear, as the story is presented largely in text form. combined with the art itself, it creates a game which can be so frustrating & addictive but ultimately, is a very soothing experience, providing a calm contrast to the more battle royale games around.
Gamers can play this for free if they have the Game Pass, or purchase it for $7.99 USD, and that is a great price for something as strange & wonderful as this.
There is no online co-op, no scores and whilst there are achievements, this game really is just you & your thoughts in a very quiet world where competition has no place and you need your intelligence to progress.
You may only play it once but I highly recommend you do, especially if you are a fan of more subtle games that do require you to think. I myself will continue to play this, I want to see more of what this Dali world gives me and just enjoy the aesthetics whilst being frustrated by its puzzles & rolling objects.