kalmis's Zen Bound 2 (PC) review

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  • kalmis has written a total of 101 reviews. The last one was for Lume

It's like Qix. Well kind of

Zen Bound 2 is a sequel to a early iPhone hit game  Zen Bound. The term game used lightly here. Sequel hitting Steam with low price sparked my interested to check this out. Before venturing any further it can be safely said that Zen Bound 2 is much more of a video game than the first Zen Bound was.

For anyone who has not played the first game, the premises of Zen Bound 2 is following: A rope is nailed to a three dimensional item and players task is to rotate the item and wrap it with the rope. Think of this as a modern 3D version of good old Qix. Only different being this is more of a puzzle game instead of a arcade game that Qix was. Tricky part comes in the three different task levels. These range from easy which is obtained by get at 70% cover. Medium 85% cover and hard being 99% cover. As the difficult level implies it is relative easy to get a easy coverage but way harder with full 99%. Especially later on the game with more complicated items and settings. The length of rope that can be used for each item is limited which makes player think hard how the cover the items best. Other gamey aspect is the ending. Each rope must be finished to a one specific nail. Often this is placed in such way that can only be covered from one direction.

Levels are divided into three different modes. There is one mode where the rope automatically colours the item when you rotate it. The second one is a rope-bomb mode. In this mode, small pellets are placed in the rope in varying distances. When these pellets are tied to the item they will explode and colour a larger  area.The last mode comes in form of nail-bombs. In this mode, the item is covered with nails and only by tying the rope to a nail the bomb will explode and colour a larger area as well. In this mode, the plain rope wrapping does not  change items colour.

The 3D items are mostly wooden items that look like from a sample gallery on 3D Max or something. The only moving object, well besides the item itself, is of course the rope. Rope has real life physics and will come off sliding if used in wrong angle. The general feel of the game is very relaxed as the Buddhist word on the title implies. Stage selection is displayed in form of a trees and Japanese paper lights. Music varying depending on the level this low-key relaxing as the visuals.

Idea behind Zen Bound 2 is very simple but still lot of fun. If you are after a slow pace puzzle then this is the thing. Despite the slow pace the game-play will become challenging on more difficult items especially when going for the 99% cover. Game has 200+ items where each bondage action takes from few minutes to ten of minutes. Finishing this with 100% on all will take a while. Steam achievements with varying difficulty has also been added. 

 Interesting and different puzzle if nothing else.
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