Unmechanical began life back in 2012 and has since been released across multiple platforms, including Steam and App Stores. Now it has been brought to the newest generation of consoles in the form of Unmechanical Extended. We are definitely seeing a massive rise in games being ported to the new consoles, especially from the mobile sector, and I for one am not completely sold on the idea of this current trend. My reasoning behind this is that we are simply getting the same games playable on a bigger screen. Some ports work while others definitely fall flat on their face, simply because what works for one platform does not always make for a good experience on another. However, I have been pleasantly surprised by Unmechanical Extended and I will tell you why further down the page.

As far as storylines go in gaming, they can either make or break a game from the off. Unmechanical goes for a definitively more simple approach. There is none! Unmechanical Extended leaves you to your own devices throughout the game barring a small introduction cut-scene at the start. So how do I explain it to you? I will make up my own version! You are a small hovering bot gently gliding along under the power of your rotor blades. Accompanied by some mates you all decide to cruise around looking for spare parts to build that tank you have all been dreaming of for a while. Suddenly you are sucked into a pipe, dragging you down further and further from the surface, and all without any of your so-called “mates” even losing a rotation of their blades. Sucked down into the deep heart of a mechanical world you must now find your way out. The only tools you have are an electro-magnet type thing that enables you to lift objects, and how smart the dim-witted gamer is holding the controller. That is Unmechanical Extended in a nut shell. From this short introduction you are on your own so to speak, with no tutorials, long-winded explanations, and requiring a few more brain cells. It starts out simple enough as you move around rocks and the like getting to grips with the whole mechanics of the gameplay, which I have to say are simple but extremely effective, you move and you can move items, how simple is that!

This is where the simplicity ends as Unmechanical Extended soon ramps up the difficulty level, everything in this title comes down to being short but very sweet. Some of the puzzles you encounter as you travel through this extremely well designed world may have you scratching your head a little, but it is never enough to frustrate or annoy you into submission. This factor makes the game completely enjoyable from beginning to end, even if the “extended” end comes quicker than you would have liked. Graphically Unmechanical Extended is pure quality, from the simplistic design of our friend the flying Kinder Egg, to the cogs turning in the background of the environment. Simple but quality is how I would describe Unmechanical Extended if I had to do it in three words. You are never bombarded with an annoying soundtrack that eats its way into your brain until you wake up sweating in the middle of the night humming it to your better half. Instead the sound effects are subtle but effective and are carefully selected and used as and when needed. I found that while the game uses the old added puzzle types such as pressure pads and reflecting light, they never seemed over done or over relied upon in any one area too much, giving each puzzle its own unique feel and flavour. Getting these wrong or bashing your mechanical Kinder Egg into a wall or even water, makes no difference in this title as you are never punished for it, allowing you to experiment without having to repeat sections you have already completed. This was a definite plus for me as there is nothing worse than a puzzle game with bad checkpoints. Unmechanical does have a clue system in place for those among you that are getting stuck in a certain puzzle, simply press Y.

Unmechanical Extended will not be a massive challenge to those gamers that are followers of this genre, but it will exercise the grey matter at times. A few things I do have reservations about are that the game is short even with this being the “Extended” version, it can easily be done in a matter of a few hours. Also, I really don’t feel like it gave me a satisfying conclusion to the whole thing, it feels as if the ending is missing. The whole time you’ve been fighting your way to the end and when you reach it, you are left saying “Is that it?” I love the use of the ambient sounds, subtle music, intriguing puzzles and the 2.5D environments, but I am heartbroken at the conclusion. It has been plain from the start that the developers were aiming at quality over quantity, and it works for Unmechanical Extended, but it is missing that one last piece of the puzzle, a bloody good ending. Some gamers may well be at odds with its lack of any real narrative or storyline, but if you give this little gem a chance you will be cruising your way through some of the most beautiful environments, while solving delightfully devilish puzzles along the way.