Unmechanical: Extended takes you underground to a desolate world for an exploration puzzle adventure game. The story begins with a charmingly sweet little tin helicopter robot and his tin family gliding freely in the clear countryside air. Suddenly and unexpectedly the ground opens up and our innocent flying machine is snatched and bundled below the earth’s surface by a strange mechanical structure. Kidnapped, alone and scared, he’s thrown into a new world of cold rock, metal structures and walls of breathing flesh. Your task is to guide him back to the lush meadows and home. The different environments that lay ahead really make this an eye opener and make the journey of escape a captivating experience. There’s no text and no dialogue which makes this journey even more intimate.
Controlling your little flying friend is simple and a delight. Swooping under metallic structures, wading through deep murky waters and gliding through pipes and tubes is a joy. Endearing this little chap is, which makes your route of escape that more urgent. Apart from these simple manoeuvring skills the only extra feature helicopter man has is a tractor beam that can be used to scoop up various objects; you’ll be using this fancy extra helping hand a lot.
Preventing a swift exit, the game rains down puzzles and challenges to block your path. These puzzles are where Unmechanical Extended shines. While some puzzles are more complex than others, most can be worked out pretty quickly and without the need to phone a friend or a Youtube guide. The diverse challenges that lay ahead are always fresh and never samey. Each puzzle is a real treat to crack, and they cover a whole spectrum of different thought processes. From placing mirrors to reflect laser beams to placing explosives to dislodging rocks, each troublesome problem is only a few head scratches away.
The game does offer a single clue to each puzzle if you’re stumped. I did find myself using this a lot; I’m not a huge fan of the puzzle genre but this game really had me. Intrigue, suspense and pure addictive gameplay really make this a game that everybody needs to experience. The backdrops of cold steel structures, pools of cloudy waters and the lonely atmosphere take you to a different world. Even though you’re deep underground the game never makes you feel claustrophobic; there’s ample room to roam around and enjoy your stay. The audio is simply brilliant, the sound of steel hitting steel, moving clogs and roaring hot burners all create a unique setting.
The down side with Unmechanical is that it is a short game – two sittings and you’re done. If you want to 100% the game, however, it will require a second playthrough.
Grip Games have dug deep and given us a new, updated and improved version of the original Unmechanical game with a console-exclusive new story episode called “Extended”. Similar to the brilliant Machinarium and LIMBO, PlayStation 4 now has something just as special.
Lizard Rating 8/10