If you’re not already familiar with The Room games, they’re a series of creepy puzzle games just dripping with atmosphere. The premise is similar to Myst- you’re in a strange environment, and through investigation and puzzle-solving you try to figure out just what’s going on. The controls are intuitive (if sometimes imprecise on a smaller device) and if you have the opportunity to play them in a dark room with headphones they’ll suck you in and immerse you in its rich blend of “Ah-HA!” and “What the hell…?”
Playing the game
The Room Three is a more than worthy successor to the franchise, adding more polish to an already very shiny series and giving you even more content than its predecessors. Not only are there more areas than in previous games, there are also different endings involving extra hidden puzzles. There are a couple of moments where it’s hard to see how to proceed, but they’ve used just the right mix of sneaky cues and the occasional (and completely optional) hint popups to keep the game flowing smoothly.
The visuals keep up the established atmosphere wonderfully and look amazing on the Retina display. There can be a lot going on at times but my phone handled it with no problems or loss of frame-rate.
I said earlier that the controls are intuitive, and that’s really the best word for them. The double-tap to zoom in and pinch to zoom out are the only gestures that aren’t 1:1 analogs for what you’re actually doing- turning cranks and opening doors is as easy as using your finger as if it were your character’s hand.
I found that I had a little trouble tapping on the exact bit that I wanted to work with once or twice, but that may just be because I played the previous games on my iPad Mini (2nd gen) and this one was all on my iPhone (6s Plus). It was a slight annoyance and distraction, but very quickly forgotten as I focused on yet another piece of pseudo-eldritch mechanisms to proceed to the next area.
A dark, Myst-esque puzzle game full of atmosphere and intriguing devices. Begs to be played in one sitting, regardless of how late it is. Check out the developers at http://www.fireproofgames.com/
I love this series, and if you haven’t played the others I highly recommend you pick up all three. The first two are on both iOS and Android, and the third is currently iOS only with an Android version coming soon. The Room Three is a universal app (it works on iPhone and iPad) and cost me about $6 including tax. I completed it with all endings in about 5 hours.
Buy it if you are looking for a challenging puzzle game with some Lovecraftian pseudo-alchemy thrown in for good measure.
Skip it if you are looking for high-action gaming, or if you plan on doing anything else for the next few hours.