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Short, sharp slice of unique point-and-click action
Price: Free (IAP of £2.99/$2.99 to unlock second chapter)
Size: 560 MB
Platform: iPhone & iPad
Point and click games have enjoyed something of a renaissance on iOS, with both original titles and ports of old games. The latter can often be a little clunky, but so much of that is down to the reduced screen size and the incredible detail these adventure games go into. The true success stories, meanwhile. have worked to reimagine the genre.
The Silent Age was one of the first to really address this, designing sweeping, side by side environments that simply required a player to move left or right to open up a new area. This meant each screen could become far less cluttered. Office Quest takes a similar approach. And, alongside its muted color palette and 70s-style artwork, the game is another that successfully mixes the old with the new.
The premise of this somewhat blandly-titled game is that you’re an office worker. A bored office worker. And all you want to do is play hookie. The opening of the game requires you to simply escape from the office, out of the gaze of your superior after the arrival of an intriguing, flying red dot. From the initial stealth escape, the game then employs a series of challenging puzzles as you try to source items to give to others to pass through the bowels of the office.
The inhabitants of the office itself are also bizarre, each wearing an animal suit of some kind, which goes largely unaddressed.
Office Quest is free to download, but after about 20-30 minutes, you’re asked to unlock the next chapter for $2.99/£2.99. Usually, we’d say this is fine – it’s a great way to suck players in, while providing a chance to sample the game before paying. However, this only really works if there’s much more of a game to unlock.
The second chapter largely features the office worker exploring tedious tunnels, before finally featuring a surreal final stretch which hints at a much better game. Before you know it, it’s over, the chapter barely longer than the first. There’s a promise of new levels of course, but this almost always relies on the success of the initial release. We liked Office Quest – it’s artwork is refreshing and the puzzles switch between simple item use, to devilishly hard shape-based challenges. But we’re not convinced there’s enough here to create the demand for more levels.
Having said that, it would be a shame if more wasn’t made – so we’d absolutely recommend giving Office Quest a shot during the free chapter, and then if it’s your bag, make sure you support the developer through the second chapter. That way, together, we can hope that at some point in the near future we get some semblance of a completed narrative.
- Original design
- Good mix puzzles
- Lacks a proper narrative
- Oh so short