Escape the room, multiple times…
Size: 92.1 MB
Platform: iPhone / iPad
Developer: Rusty Lake
Those Rusty Lake fellas aren’t known for playing by the rules. The studio, which produces a whole range of room escape games, chopping and changing between names and approaches to puzzle design, but always with the same location, characters and distinct art style.
They’ve done around 15 titles now, but the world really came into its own a few years ago with Rusty Lake Roots. Whereas the earlier Rusty Lake Hotel took the studio into new territory from its series of very playable but uninspiredly named Cube Escape games, Roots took you through the historic bios of its weird, human, and anamorphic characters. The game was massive, too. Hours and hours of different rooms.
But in Samsara Room, the studio takes steps both forward, and back. On the one hand, it steps out from under the Rusty Lake moniker, while simultaneously pairing the game back to a more focused, nuanced, less sprawling affair.
In Samsara Room, as you can guess, you’ve just got to escape the one room. It employes its usual 2D technique where you’re presented with a scene that can be zoomed in on in various places to allow you to interact with objects and characters. Then you can move, effectively in 360, to see different 2D scenes on each side of the room.
It sounds like a pretty small game, no? Well, it may be smaller than Roots, but the developers use their trademark ingenuity to ensure you escape that room multiple times before you truly do escape it.
So what does that mean? Well, on first opening the game, you’re in a room with a grandfather clock, a table with a phone, a shelving unit, and a few other bits and pieces. You’ll need to prod and probe the room to collect a series of items that open up the next room – which is both the same, and different. We don’t want to give much more away than that… but the recurring theme here is enlightenment. Will completing this game lead you towards it? We’re not so sure, but the well-paced, suitably tricky journey you’ll go on is quite the ride.
Everything about this game reflects the universe previously created, and the music is no different. It’s minimal, but eerie, its creepiness matching the art design. It continues with its retro themes, the wallpaper of these rooms are quite inspiring in this throwback era. In conclusion, Rusty Lake has done it again. And it’s completely free, to celebrate 5 years of Rusty Lake games. If this is your first time discovering this games studio there’s a whole world already there for you. So what are you waiting for?
- Unique design
- Challenging puzzles
- Ongoing mythology
- Not as clear a narrative as previous games