Mightier


This game pleasantly surprised me. I thought it was a really cool combination of player creativity and puzzle solving. The puzzle solving didn’t get too hard, yet the different challenges kept me interested. All in all, Mightier entertained me for quite some time.

In Mightier we enter a different universe where technology has advanced quite significantly. You play an Actionaut and your mission is to collect Datagon components to reassemble an important galactic cruiser that has exploded. After you’ve collected 2 Datagon components with the help of Engineer 254, you lose communications with this colleague and you have to take over his job, becoming Engineer 255. You’re stationed at the command centre, where you can control a giant laser that will raise or lower platforms by heating embedded crystals.

Although they tell you that you’re now Engineer 255, you continue to play the part of Actionaut as well. Every level starts at the command centre, where you can print out the schematic of the current level, solve the puzzle, scan the solution and transmit this to the giant laser. You can also visit the design lab and edit or view gadgets, Actionauts and plants. Then you take over the part of the Actionaut and have to collect the Datagon components by moving through the landscape. The game can also be played without using the printer or scanner.

Mightier’s puzzles combine traditional puzzles (i.e. non-game puzzles) with actual platform games. The puzzles are presented to you in a schematic (as you can see above). Then you’ll have to draw lines around the embedded crystals (the blue numbers) in order for your Actionaut to be able to reach the Datagon components (the stars). This schematic also shows enemies (explanation mark) and butterflies, which you can also collect. As you progress through the game the puzzles get harder (see screenshot below) and different sets of embedded crystals are added.

The numbers indicate the level of either the embedded crystal or the Datagon. It is your job to create a path for the Actionaut towards these Datagon components. You do this by drawing shapes around the respective embedded crystals. These then, with the help of the giant laser (see screenshot below), will raise to the level of their number, taking the shape that you’ve just created.

In the command centre you can also visit the Design Lab. This is a really cool feature in the game that totally amazed me, since I didn’t know that it was in there. In the design lab you view the different gadgets and plants you’ve discovered and you can also edit them! So when you take over the part of the Actionaut you actually play with your own designs and creations. In the screenshots below you can view my creations.

my Actionaut

Jetpack

Jetpack

Peacnik

Peacenik

I enjoyed playing this game. It’s a casual game, yet the puzzles become challenging. There’s a lot of explanation at the beginning, which at first was difficult to grasp, since there are a lot of new terms introduced. But this tutorial also helps you understand the game a lot more quicker and I think they’ve integrated it in the game nicely, without it getting too long or stupid.

Although at first Migthier totally rubbed me the wrong way, since it advertises itself with sentences like “Step away from the computer!” and “Don’t be stuck staring at the screen!”. I think that insults all the gamers out there. I don’t feel the need to step away from my computer or stop starring at the screen and I don’t want to play games that make me do that. Luckily for Mightier, they expected some gamers to feel like this and made it possible to solve the puzzles without leaving our beloved computer.

It’s definitely an innovative game in its genre. It involved new and different ways of puzzle solving and player creativity. I think it’s worthy of its place among the innovation award finalists of the IGF 2009. You can download this game at Ratloop, where you can also find more information about the company that designed it.

For an overview of my articles on the IGF 2009 go here.

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