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Filament is out now and might be my favourite puzzle game of 2020

By - | Views: 10,250

Filament, a stylish narrative puzzle game set aboard a seemingly abandoned spaceship has officially released along with Linux support from Beard Envy and Kasedo Games. Note: Copy provided by GOG.com.

There's barely an introduction as you dock with The Alabaster and have the ship's pilot, Juniper, call out for assistance. Stuck in the cockpit and asking for your help, you're pushed through puzzle after puzzle of mind-bending yet stupidly addictive puzzles as you attempt to find out what happened.

As far as puzzle games go, Filament is seriously sweet and engaging. It has such a friendly feel and atmosphere to it that you won't want to put it down. Mechanically initially quite simple too, accessible with easy controls as the majority of it is just you walking around objects with a wire attached to link everything up but it's also crazy difficult in the later parts.

The truth is out there. Somewhere.

There's been a few of the puzzles where I'm not kidding you, I was stuck on for multiple hours. There's no real sense of failure here though. You can go back to the start of a puzzle quickly, or simply rewind a little at the touch of a button. It handles the complexity of it quite wonderfully. Even though you can't really fail, you still get a great sense of achievement in Filament when you do finally nail-down that puzzle solution. The rush from spending 20 minutes running around and getting tangled up, to then have it suddenly click felt amazing.

Check out the release trailer:

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What certainly helps ease any frustration is not just the simple controls, it's also the multiple paths you can take. You're free to explore each section of the ship a little bit, with different rooms having different sets of puzzles for you to access so you can come back to one later. This is great too, as I mentioned it initially seems simple mechanically but it lures you into gradually more complex features. It's not simple in the later levels. Well, it is, in the sense that you're just running a wire around a ton of puzzles but it tweaks that simplicity constantly.

As you progress you need to deal with: different wire and node colouring, wrapping the wire around a specific node to open a little gateway through a wall to correctly position yourself to wrap it around another, certain nodes needing to be activated in a certain sequence, there's even times you literally need to wrap yourself up in a circle of it all to keep the wire powered. What else? Oh well there's times you're even switching between multiple little robots. So it's easy to have your brain just melt away. So when you're stuck (and you will be), being able to leave and go somewhere else was great.

One odd issue in the Linux version was encountered: it seemed to be unable to detect and load any language so the whole menu was sort-of broken with no text anywhere. A quick re-load and then it was fine. Strange but only happened once. Apart from that, through all my hours of play it was great!

With an initially pretty straightforward puzzle mechanic that just keeps on giving and twisting your brain, a dose of wonderfully atmospheric audio and a soft yet quite beautiful art style, Filament is a puzzle game that's really worthy of your time and monies. Fantastic. Loved it.

You can find Filament on GOG.com, Humble Store and Steam.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
11 Likes, Who?
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About the author -
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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly.
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4 comments

Eike 27 April 2020 at 5:11 pm UTC
And to wishlist you go.
Also 64 positive reviews of a total of 64.
ZigZag 27 April 2020 at 10:50 pm UTC
I'm loving it, the puzzles are very well done
Philadelphus 28 April 2020 at 8:58 am UTC
This game is absolutely amazing. I first heard about from the post here a few months back, and got in on release. I've already put…*checks*…uh, 14 hours into it. I may have stayed up far too late a few night craving that sweet, sweet dopamine hit for finishing a puzzle and getting some tidbits of the surprisingly compelling story (still trying to figure out just what on Earth "Arnold" happened to the crew). The puzzles are, as Liam mentioned, all variations on a very simple theme, but they all work quite well and the ability to jump around as you like between different types definitely helps stop that feeling of being unable to make progress.

There are also an absolutely insane amount of secrets which unlocked extra hidden archive messages scattered throughout the game. There are some obvious ones, with collectible cards you can find with numbers on them, but I've started finding well-hidden ones in the environment. I solved a sliding puzzle (which doesn't slide in-game) using GIMP, and even found a tray of seedlings which served as a password! I've still got lots to find, too, so I imagine I'm going to be playing this game for quite some time.

I can't forget to mention the music, which is lovely. Very peaceful and soothing, and loops perfectly, so it never gets too tiring. (Though for some reason I'm always surprised when it changes between floors of the ship! ) I'm really glad I shelled out for the Marmalade Edition which comes with the soundtrack.

Summary: if you want a beautiful-looking game with relaxing music which will fry your brain with addictive and ingenious puzzle design which requires real thinking to solve but will make you feel like a genius when you do, then you really should check out this game.

(In a cute nod to the story, if you join the developers' Discord server, you get your very own color-based code name assigned. )
Sparhawk 29 April 2020 at 7:28 am UTC
Added to my wishlist
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