By: Derek Yu

On: October 19th, 2009


Amanita Design’s Machinarium was released last Friday. The game is superb. It’s a beautiful adventure game set in a unique world populated with all kinds of lovable, crazy robots (the protagonist is especially endearing). In my opinion, the visuals are peerless – every room is gorgeous, and filled with little details and surprises that ignite the imagination. The puzzles can get pretty difficult, but by and large I found them to be relatively intuitive and well-done. They’re quite varied, too, and include a mix of hotspot-hunting, inventory-management, timing, and mini-games.

Machinarium marks a very high point in the adventure-gaming and I highly recommend it. Even people who are put off by the slow pacing of most adventure games should try it, as there’s no dialogue in Machinarium and you are sucked into the game itself very quickly (even the title screen is fun!). You can play the demo right in your browser on the game’s website. The full game is $20.

TIGdb: Entry for Machinarium

  • Anthony Flack

    “Peerless” – good description!

    It is so beautiful you could just cry. I am positively aching with aesthetic appreciation here, and I can’t remember the last time a game did that (SotC, probably). Machinarium is not only better-looking than most game art, it’s also better-looking than most game-inspired art.

    It’s like a game that you’d normally only get to play in a strange, beautiful half-remembered dream. Not something you’d expect to encounter in actual reality…

  • Alex

    Don’t compare this game to Shadow of the Colossus, Anthony. Machinarium is actually a good game, not a piece of shit like SoTC.

  • Dinsdale

    Worth every cent.

    I know we’re supposed to toss our objectivity aside for this one (I was expecting Samorost with better visuals) but Machinarium really is a great, great game! Complete adventure game.

  • Dinsdale

    Alex, good thing you have a very strong urge to publicly share your opinions, else I might have blissfully escaped an increase in blood-pressure. Thanks for doing your part!

    Anthony also is overreacting a bit there, but it is a good game.

  • Pilmer

    I’m totally nerding out over the soundtrack. I don’t listen to video game music too often (except for the occasional Earthbound tune) but floex’s soundtrack is seriously one of the best I’ve ever heard, and it fits the visuals perfectly. Reminds me a lot of mid-90s era Mouse on Mars. Getting the mp3s packaged with the game is a big incentive to buy straight from Amanita.

  • Lord Tim

    Game of 2009.

    I can’t wait until I forget the puzzles so I can play it again and enjoy it oh so much.

  • Anthony Flack

    Over-reacting, maybe, but it’s pretty damn rare that a game’s artwork will elicit that kind of response in me. I’m normally jaded as all hell.

    Alex is obviously wrong about SotC, but just to be clear, I was referring only to the visuals here. SotC was the last time I saw a game so pretty and evocative that I just wanted to pour my eyes out into it.

  • makosanders

    “It’s like a game that you’d normally only get to play in a strange, beautiful half-remembered dream. Not something you’d expect to encounter in actual reality…”
    Wow, so I’m not the only one who dreams seemingly impossibly beautiful games?

  • ctankep

    Muramasa anyone.? Anyhow it’s interesting to note the connection between detail / art / and the kind of emotional response it elicits.

    Makes me wonder about visual acuity and how we take it all in / methinks of the old notion that we only actually perceive 30% of the surroundings versus 70% from memory. Perhaps something similar is true with regard to an emotional realism from games ..?

    Ie. we just don’t invest or expose ourselves emotionally to games where our visual system shuts down due to expectations or pre-conceptions already experienced ..

  • ctankep


    Your dreams are only as good as your realities, imagined, consumed or otherwise ..?

  • Rohow

    I still can’t get access to my preorder :( i’ve d/ld the .exe a few times now and still no joy.

  • negative zero

    man…gotta love that art. props to Amanita.

  • Melly


    Send them an e-mail, they should be able to sort it out. Servers were taking a hit for a while there.

  • jack

    Some of the scenarios gave me the feeling of The Neverwood, great game indeed

  • Ilya Chentsov

    Love the screen/sketch pairing in relevant posts.

  • Dinsdale

    Also, spoilers! I didn’t know I have to get him a barrel!

  • ptoing

    Just bought it and played a bit, very nice. I like this a lot. There need to be more games with drawn art like this.

  • Radosaur

    Bought it as well, it’s the prettiest game I’ve ever seen. And I mean it.

    But now I really, really want the soundtrack, it’s absolutely amazing.

  • Lambchops

    If you buy the game direct from the devs you get the soundtrack MP£s thrown in as well. Not sure if they are going to offer it separately or not rhough.

  • Kyo

    It was brilliant.

    I thought most of the puzzles were pretty original, which is quite a feat. I actually laughed out loud a couple of times, and I pretty much never do that over a game (Psychonauts springs to mind).