Saturday, January 03, 2009

The Manipulator

There is this game I have been playing called The Manipulator, it is a platformer with puzzle elements. You play a Manipulator, someone who can take controle of a person's mind, read their mind and even kill them with your power of through. It reminds me of Scanners in this respects, but also Metal Gear as you have to sneak around guards and take them out before they realise you are there.

The Manipulator will take about an hour for a complete play through, but you can't save your game (this is deliberate). The thing I like most about the game is that none of the puzzles solutions are obscure, or at least I found all the solutions myself through experimentation. There also isn't a tutorial, just some simple text queues for the controls.

The Manipulator is a surprisingly mature game with many lessons for budding game designers (note the narration, visual setting, environmental setting along with the audio and the simple control scheme).

If you are quite smitten by The Manipulator, you might want to try Messiah (David Perry, 2000) or Oddworld Abe's Oddysee (1997), which have a very similar gameplay concept of playing a weak character with the ability of possession to solve progression obstacles.