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#1 Posted by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

I've got some stressful things going on in my life, so I'd like to play some nice, relaxing games with worlds to lose myself in from time to time. What I'm looking for is something like Myst: a nice looking world to explore and a good atmosphere, little to no fighting and lots of puzzles to solve. What games like that are around these days? I've played some of the most obvious titles, like The Witness, Obduction, The Talos Principle, but what might I have missed? I've got a PC and a Switch.

(Also, if there already are threads like this that I've missed just point me to them and I'll be on my way.)

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#2 Edited by ajamafalous (13815 posts) -

Quern is really good; it feels like the closest thing to a modern Myst to me (even more than Obduction did)

I also think FEZ scratches the same itch, but it might not be what you're looking for

A friend of mine has recommended INFRA, but I haven't played it myself so I can't speak to whether it fits or not

EDIT: Maybe Antichamber or FRACT OSC? Though they're more strictly puzzle games than the world immersion/exploration of the others

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#3 Posted by mbr2 (644 posts) -

Kario. It's definitely flawed but I like it.

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#4 Posted by Rorie (5672 posts) -

Monument Valley might work if you have a decent phone, but there's very little world exploration going on in that. The Room series is also pretty similar in that there are a lot of puzzles but you're kind of locked on rails.

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#5 Edited by BeachThunder (15130 posts) -

I guess it depends on how much puzzling you want. There's definitely a continuum between first-person puzzle games and walking simulators. I'm also assuming you've played the Portal Games.

  • Antichamber is fantastic and mindbending.
  • Fragments of Euclid is also pretty mindbending and it's free.
  • SOMA (potentially with the enemies turned off?)
  • Ether One is wonderful and heartwarming and went under a lot of people's radars.
  • Magrunner: Dark Pulse - another thing that went under some people's radars. Portalesque, but also Lovecraftian.
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#6 Posted by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

@ajamafalous: I've played Fez and I liked it, but it's not quite what I'm in the mood for now. (Also I got kinda lost and fell off it after a while...) I looked at a trailer for Quern and it really felt a lot like a new Myst game! I'll look into it.

@mbr2: I hadn't heard of Kairo before, but I'll check it out and see if it's what I'm looking for.

@rorie: I actually finally got around to playing Monument Valley just tonight! It was nice, but I would have preferred a little more challenge. I like the "puzzle box" kind of games too, if they're well made and the atmosphere is engaging enough. And I've loved The Room series this far so I'm looking forward to the latest one coming to Android so I can play it.

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#7 Edited by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

@beachthunder: That reminds me - I actually have Antichamber already. Think I bought it in some Steam sale but never got around to playing it. I probably should fire it up and give it a chance... Out of the others you mention I've only heard of Soma. But Ether One being "wonderful and heartwarming" sounds promising. I could use some of that right about now.

But there needs to be a balance between the puzzles and the exploration. I don't want it to be just a story that I go through.

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#8 Posted by Rorie (5672 posts) -

@beachthunder: That reminds me - I actually have Antichamber already. Think I bought it in some Steam sale but never got around to playing it. I probably should fire it up and give it a chance... Out of the others you mention I've only heard of Soma. But Ether One being "wonderful and heartwarming" sounds promising. I could use some of that right about now.

Ah, Antichamber is great. It's very abstract and I think the resolution support on PC was a bit weird the last time I played it, but I remember liking it a lot.

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#10 Edited by ripelivejam (13138 posts) -

There was a space adventure/puzzle game where it seemed you were limited to one room and they gave npcs in it FMV eyes (not Tacoma). Name escapes me.

e: Cradle. Looks fascinating and it's been on my wishlist for awhile, but puzzle/adventure really aren't my type.

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#11 Posted by flagranterror (70 posts) -

As @rorie mentioned I highly recommend The Room series. They are all excellent puzzlers and really nail the atmosphere they try to create. Not scary, necessarily, but unsettling. The feedback you get from doing the puzzles is great too, they considered a lot with their sound design.

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#12 Edited by depecheload (620 posts) -

Antichamber is great.

The Room is horrible. It's basically "slide things until something happens."

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#13 Posted by Thevamp25 (303 posts) -

Obduction, it's made by the creators of myst.

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#14 Edited by therealtakeshi (55 posts) -

You got good taste (that I also share)! I also like adventure games in that style, so with that in mind, here's a bunch of recs I didn't see mentioned as I look in my Steam library:

The Turing Test is pretty cool, though I haven't quite finished it yet. Clearly inspired by Talos Principle, though less open. Challenging puzzles!

Cradle is shortish (3-5 hours) with some discordant puzzle elements, but its worldbuilding is *phenomenal*. It's fresh and unique and I love it!

Asemblance is mysterious and a little scary, and has great worldbuilding if you're the type that digs the details (like seemingly random notebook papers on a desk that actually have plot elements).

Slime Rancher has a cute, low-combat world. Less puzzley, more base-buildy, but might be up your alley.

Dreamfall Chapters is more of an adventure game with light puzzle elements, but it's got a neat story and great atmosphere!

Thumper might be a bit of a departure, but it's great if you're the type who finds the same joy in perfecting mechanics as in solving a puzzle.

The Sexy Brutale has a different take on puzzles than you've mentioned, but it's unique and swanky and cool!

Linelight is a pure puzzle game with a slick look and great soundtrack.

Abzû is very light on puzzles but has a super chill and pretty world.

NaissanceE sold me by the Quick Look, but I didn't actually play it? The look might be your thing though!

Have you experienced Jazzpunk?

And some quickfire recs: Q.U.B.E. Director's Cut, Quantum Conundrum, Vertiginous Golf, Grow Home, Fract OSC, The Stanley Parable, Rochard, Vessel, Scribblenauts Unlimited.

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#15 Posted by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

@depecheload said:

The Room is horrible. It's basically "slide things until something happens."

It's a puzzle box! More like "slide things around until you figure out how they fit together". They're not for everyone I guess, but I've played all of them and really enjoy them. Also, the "not scary, but unsettling" atmosphere that @flagranterror mentions is very good. I'm looking forward to playing the latest title in the series.

@therealtakeshi That's quite a list, thanks! I see some titles that I have on my wishlist, but most I'll need to look up. (Also some that seem interesting, but might not be for me. Like Thumper. It looks amazing, but I'm not sure I have the mindset for it.)

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#16 Posted by flagranterror (70 posts) -

@depecheload: I disagree, but that's the way I feel about most fighting games, except replace "slide things" with "mash buttons."

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#17 Edited by fetterdave (274 posts) -

Rime is on Steam now, right?

Oh, also on Switch now, cool.

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#18 Posted by whitegreyblack (1950 posts) -
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#19 Edited by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

@ajamafalous: I ended up buying Quern and so far I'm enjoying myself a lot. I agree that it feels very close to a new Myst game. It's not running super well for me but it seems like they're working on improving the performance. And apart from that I like it, both when it comes to the puzzles and the atmosphere. Thanks!

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#20 Posted by DrBroel (206 posts) -
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#21 Posted by ajamafalous (13815 posts) -

@ajamafalous: I ended up buying Quern and so far I'm enjoying myself a lot. I agree that it feels very close to a new Myst game. It's not running super well for me but it seems like they're working on improving the performance. And apart from that I like it, both when it comes to the puzzles and the atmosphere. Thanks!

Glad to hear you're liking it! Shame it's not running well, though.

(Did you also play Obduction on PC? That ran way worse for me than Quern did)

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#22 Posted by jammar (33 posts) -

Try The House of DaVinci, should be available on android

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#23 Posted by HomeMadeTshirt (20 posts) -

@ajamafalous:Yes, I played Obduction, and it had its problems too: the one that bothered me the most were the long load times between worlds.

Quern on the other hand is stuttery, especially in some areas. They released a patch yesterday that was meant to make it run better, but they had to pull it back due to glitches. :/ It's a bit distracting but not game breaking, so I think I'll just keep playing.