June 06, 2013

Quell Memento PS Vita Review

A new puzzle game is out for the PS Vita, but is it worth your time?

There are not that many puzzle type games available for the console, which makes Quell Memento a bit of a rare gem. Tagged as being an "enchanting zen puzzler," the game instantly wraps you in a bit of a mystery. If you define the title, it basically means "to suppress a memory." But whose?

Set within an old abandoned house, the player restores order to the jumbled memories of the last occupant, and in doing so embarks on a haunting journey of self-discovery and reflection.

You quickly utilize the touch screen of your Vita to dust off a picture as the voice of an old man hints at his memories. The game then begins, which is basically a series of puzzles in which you slide a bubble around a map to collect pearls, gems, and other trinkets to complete a level. Once you successfully collect everything, the screen will tell you how many moves it took you to finish. There is a counter on the side that shows you how many moves is considered "Perfect."

The game does a nice job of easing you into the difficulty with a few directions, and then the game begins to earn its stars. You will find yourself mentally planning out your steps in how to complete the level in the minimum number of moves, and desperately seeking out the hidden gems and occasionally the hidden level, called "Timekeepers." This makes for a great bit of replay to master each level.

You earn "coins" for perfecting levels which can be used for various things, like unlocking clues on how to complete a level if you are ever feeling a bit lost, or locating the hidden gems. Need real help? You can buy coins off the PS Store.

And you can always check the leaderboards to see how you compare to others who have played.

As you complete a set of levels, the old man will tell you a little more about his suppressed memories. Just enough for you to want to hear the next, and so you race off to complete the next levels.

The sounds and music in Quell Memento are very chill, and help to draw you into the mystique that the puzzle game is wrapped in.

The controls are easy to get. You use the touch screen to swipe a direction you want the bubble to go. There is also the option to use the sticks and buttons, but it feels more organic using the touch controls.

There are many puzzle types for you to solve as you progress to keep the gameplay fresh. At first you collect  pearls, next you'll be activating lights, illuminating diamonds, and more... There are also over 150 levels to get through. That ought to keep you busy for awhile.

The game has trophies, 12 of them. They are a challenge to achieve, and not just to "complete a level." You will find yourself trying to beat the game goals, and also reaching for the trophy challenges. Once again, this extends the life of the game.

The Verdict:
If you like puzzle games, you will enjoy Quell Memento. The mysterious atmosphere and puzzle variety will draw you in, and you will spend time planning out your strategies to ace levels and find all the hidden pieces. And for $5, you get a great value for your buck.

Quell Memento receives an 8/10.
Justification: Price is $5, gameplay is varied and perfect for mobile gaming, puzzles are creative, sounds are perfect for the mood of the game.

What do you think? Have you played the game? Want to try it out? Comment below and let us know.

Game info: Genre: Family, Publisher: Fallen Tree Games, Ltd., Rated: E for Everyone.

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