Metrico is all about data, the data you are inputting into your Vita, this data is used to solve minimalistic screen-sized puzzles. This game is spread over multiple worlds that introduce new data inputs in a variety of minimalistic art styles.
Full disclosure time, I am not a huge fan of puzzle platformers or puzzle games. I never beat Thomas Was Alone or Clone in the Dark and I generally stay away from parking games or physics puzzlers on my phone. Portal and Portal 2 are the only other puzzle games that I saw to the end. I do not like getting stuck or trying something for a time without knowing if I am even on the right track.
With short levels and quick respawns Metrico is more accessible to gamers like me. You can probe and experiment with no consequences in order to pick apart the puzzles. I love the amount of puzzles and how varied they are without introducing too many variables. The puzzles are fun to do even after you have figured out what makes them tick. I even found a few of the puzzles making me laugh from their novelty. The art style and musical score are perfect for the game making you feel like you are inside of a computer program moving columns and rows with your movements and different inputs. The game starts out strong when you fully understand that every movement you do is affecting your surrounding which is oddly unique.
At the halfway point is where Metrico gets a little repetitive. Here’s where a voice-over or story a la Portal or Thomas Was Alone would really make this game hard to put down all the way through. I think Metrico’s puzzles are more fun and engaging than Thomas Was Alone however. The last few worlds are really great when they really start leaning into the Vita’s unique inputs and it was a joy to figure out and play through. I preferred taking on three or four stages at a time and it is a great game to leave suspended and then come back to when you have a few minutes. The puzzles are very clever and varied without ever being too obscure. I only had to cheat on the internet once and it was my mind getting into a rut and not seeing something obvious.
Puzzle games can feel like you are just solving puzzles instead of shooting zombies, using puzzles as another gameplay to do between cutscenes or dialog. Metrico’s puzzles engaged me and kept me coming back for more on their own merit. Metrico’s avatar feels stiff and unforgiving, but I quickly realized in the midst of the puzzles that this makes the puzzles more straight forward. The avatar strict movement and lack of variance helps you know that your platforming prowess is not getting in the way of you solving a puzzle. In that way Metrico is more a pure Puzzle game than Puzzle Platformer, rarely does a puzzle require speed or exact movement to solve it.
Metrico is engaging, thoughtful and fun. It is a puzzle game with a low barrier of entry and situated in a way that makes it less frustrating and time consuming as other puzzle games. It is a solid exclusive for the Vita’s ever growing library of games.