ClueQuest: Mechanics of the Heart

By | May 1, 2022

Online, Apr 2022

Rated 4 out of 5
Toby says:

Okay, sure, April is a pretty weird time to be reviewing a Valentine’s themed game. The real reason is of course that I got to it later than planned, but I’ll claim the excuse that a game based around romantic love is suitable for any day I’d the year.
All Cluequest’s games share the same fictional universe of secret agents and cartoon mice, but in this one, instead of foiling a dastardly plot, you’re helping a robot get to grips with human emotion. That sets the tone for the game: somewhere between sweet and saccharine, depending on your tastes.
If you’ve played any of the company’s other printable games you’ll recognise the format: a black and white PDF of puzzle materials divided into chapters, with a web interface that provides linking narrative via text and video, and a place to enter your answers. Mechanics of the Heart also shares the series’ high level of quality. Every puzzle made logical sense; the game consistently hit a sweet spot where it was tricky enough to be interesting without being confusing or frustrating; and they continue to come up with fresh puzzle ideas.
I’ve commented on other cQ printable games on how much pre-game paper cutting there is to do; Mechanics of the Heart has some, but a pretty reasonable amount. It also takes care to prompt you to do all the preparation beforehand, and considerately pauses the timer between sections in case you ignored that instruction.
Before starting the game you have the option to customise it. This is an entirely optional extra which has no impact on the game’s puzzles. Since you’re entering words and phrases without advance knowledge of how it’s going to use them, the results can be a little hit and miss, but it’s a cute opportunity to add in a surprise for the person you’re playing it with.
If Valentine’s Day leaves you cold, you might not be won over by the stylings of this game. However, whether you find it pleasingly cute or overly cutesy, you’re unlikely to be let down by the puzzle content. Still, for best results save this one for when you and someone special are in a lovey-dovey mood. 4 / 5
Pris rated this:4 / 5
Disclaimer: We played this game on a complementary basis. This does not influence the review or rating.

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