** Runner up for Most Innovative Game Design on the Indie Showcase at Casual Connect USA 2013! ** Nominated for a Unity Award 2013 for Best 2D Visual Experience! A truly unique puzzle experience that embraces simplicity, elegance, and challenge. Strata paints a simple yet engaging puzzle game onto a sophisticated canvas of color and sound. Test the limits of your brain by completing complex weaves of color to solve a puzzle. The point of the game is to strategically layer colored ribbons to match a pattern. Using forethought and strategy you must sequence your moves correctly. Over time patterns emerge and your tactics may evolve, but Strata will keep you on your toes with increasingly difficult puzzles.
There is a good concept here with a very low price point and a polished presentation. However, spending significant time with it reveals deep flaws.
The difficulty curve is bumpy while still remaining relatively shallow. There is a general trend upward as the matrix sizes increase, but levels with obvious patterns or lots of free spaces are scattered before and after ones that are more difficult. When a trivial level comes after a tougher one, the former comes off like uninteresting filler. This feeling is amplified by the sheer quantity of levels. A smaller selection of puzzles that graduate into real brain-twisters would have been more meaningful than over a hundred that...well, don't.
The audio never changes. The only visual variance comes in the colors of the ribbons. (I am not sure how well a colorblind person could play this game.) Coupled with the issues above, I found it difficult to maintain interest in Strata for more than a few levels at a time. This might be fine for a mobile game, but is unsatisfying on PC.
As a neutral note, all the trailers and screenshots say that there is a fifth set. Despite fully perfect-ranking sets one through four, I saw no sign of it.
A throwback to the dedicated puzzlers of the 90's, like Honeycomb Hotel.
This is one of those games you need to play fullscreen in a quiet room to really get the full experience. The art is minimalistic and the brightly coloured ribbons accent the view more and more as you progress into the larger levels. The music is very calm and suits the game very well.
In terms of actual gameplay, the main mechanic is intuitive and something I don't personally remember being done before, so props to the devs for that. The ribbons are a really fresh take on grid-based puzzlers and make some some surprisingly deep puzzles. And since there's more than one way to solve most of the puzzles, your free to form your own style of play.
For the price, I highly recommend picking up this gem if you're into casual puzzle games, or if you just want to chill out.
Very relaxing game. Well done.
A relaxing and beautifully designed puzzle that is a refreshing change from most games. I'd give it a 10 if it remembered the configuration settings that open before it starts and it went straight to my last level instead of the settings window and the game beginning. Otherwise, well done!