Samorost 3 ($4.99) by Amanita Design is the latest exploration adventure puzzle game from the makers of Machinarium and Botanicula. If you love a good point-and-click adventure, then Samorost 3 is worth taking a gander at.
Life is great, but it can be super stressful at times. For me, personally, I find relaxation in playing video games, specifically the ones that don’t add more stress to my life (you know those kinds of games). I’ve gone through a ton of different titles, but the types of games that help me mellow out are definitely puzzles, and even more so when they’re an adventure with exploration involved. I’ve been a fan of Amanita Design when they first released Machinarium several years ago, because their unique art style and charming characters captivated me. So naturally, when I saw that they were back at it again with Samorost 3, I had to check it out for myself, even though I did not play indie hits Samorost 1 or 2.
Like their other titles, Samorost 3 is visually stunning. Players will find themselves in a distinctive world in space that is full of gorgeous, lush environments that make you feel as if you are truly there, complete with depth-of-field effects. The artwork for each area is insanely detailed with fine textures and the colors range from dark and rich to vibrant, soft, and dreamlike hues as you make your way through the game. The animations of your space gnome character, as well as other living beings, are buttery smooth and fluid, and everything is just bouncing with their own personality and charm. The ambient soundtrack in Samorost is atmospheric and truly engaging, so you’ll want to whip out your favorite earbuds for an immersive experience. And since the game revolves around a magic flute to listen to special tunes from objects, sound is a pretty big part of this game.
Like most other games of the genre, you’ll find yourself dropped into a beautiful world without too much direction. You control a little space gnome who ends up with a magic flute, and you set out on a journey to discover the flute’s origins. In Samorost 3, there are nine total alien worlds that you’ll be able to discover and explore, with each of them having their own special alien life form inhabiting it. And since it is also a puzzle adventure game, there will be plenty of challenges that you’ll come across that need to be solved before you can move on.
The controls in Samorost 3 are simple enough to understand, and if you’ve ever played any point-and-click adventure in the past, then you know how it works. You can zoom in or out of an area by doing the pinching gesture. Dragging your finger across the screen lets you pan the scene left or right. To have your space gnome move, just tap on where you want him to go to. If it’s impossible, he lets you know by shaking his head. You can interact with other objects and characters in the environment by tapping on them and seeing what happens. When you see an object with pulsating white rings, that indicates that you can drag the magic flute from the top right corner to the object, and your gnome will listen to the tune of the object. This is the key to discovering the various alien life forms that you can find. In order to get far into the game, you will have to explore and interact with everything that you can on the screen.
I’m not always into these types of games, but Samorost 3 did catch my attention over the past few days (after all of the excitement of new iPhones, of course). I found the game to be rather relaxing, even with the tricky puzzles that you come across. Plus, the graphics are truly exquisite and even look realistic with the blurred depth-of-field parts in the foreground. The music and sounds are top notch, and this is a great game to just kick back and relax with after a long, hectic day.
The only thing that could be improved is the lack of text to describe all of the menu options when you pause the game, as I don’t think all of the icons are clear enough, and it is entirely possible to accidentally reset your progress if you aren’t careful. Hopefully the developers can consider this and improve it in a future update.
I recommend checking out Samorost 3 if you’re a fan of exploration adventure puzzle games and like Amanita Design’s previous titles. You can find Samorost 3 on the App Store as a universal download for your iPhone and iPad for just $4.99. There are no in-app purchases.