If you just heard it as a concept, Shadowmatic seems like a game that is virtually unplayable. Forming figures out of shadows is not an initially attractive premise. However, Shadowmatic proves that mere words are never enough in relaying an experience, especially, a wonderful one.

Shadowmatic is priced at $2.99, somewhat "steep" for a mobile game, but it is outright worth it considering the highly original gameplay and the hefty content that comes with it. Though, I am not a fan of the Pack of Hint-points packages. They are priced at $0.99 (20 hints) $1.99 (50 hints), $3.99 (120 hints), and $7.99 (280 hints). Yes, it is a sort of shortcut for those lazy people and it does betray the already polished nature of the game. It might deter some people from purchasing the game knowing that there are in-app purchase packages for sale inside an already paid app. You do not need the hint packages at all. Fortunately, the game does not revolve around trapping you to buy them. Shadowmatic is all about discovering the figures, and your trance-like journey into such experience.

There are over 70 levels, and each of them is amazing. You are given 3D objects and you are going to spin, twist, twirl them until they form a figure from their shadows. You are not actually given on what image you should be forming, and there goes the challenge. First, you start with manipulating just one object and then you get a pair (and then more) of abstract objects to manipulate. Controls are what you expect from this kind of game, you swipe to rotate objects, and when it comes to two or more objects, you have to pin the lower-left side screen button in order to switch between the objects, and use your two fingers to rotate the objects without destroying their positions.

Shadowmatic is visually appealing. There are no explosions or bright glowing lights, what you have is just the light and the shadows, and a blurry backdrop. And this simplicity is what makes this game beautiful, “Less is more” is never been truer in this case. Apparently, the music of this game is also for sale in iTunes, and why am I not surprised? The music in this game is ambient, similar to what you hear playing in an expensive spa. Shadowmatic’s music is transcending, it will enhance your focus. You will achieve the gaming trance, where nothing in the world matters, only the shadows and the light.

You are going to be scored by the time you finally “guessed” the image. The lesser the time it took you to get it right, the bigger the score. You are also rewarded with a hit point for finishing a level. There are four hint levels, the first one (1 hint point) will give you the word or a phrase that implicitly hints at the hidden silhouette’s practical, visual, or any other properties or functions. The second hint (2 hint point), is another word or phrase that provide more context. The third hint (4 hint point) is the name of level, which is also the name of the object being guessed. And the final hint (8 hint point) will outright give you the image you are expected to project. There are also additions like possible figures to discover aside from the main objective. This will give you an additional hint point, and some bragging rights.

Shadowmatic relies on its simplicity and its amazingly calming nature. You could play this game on a commute, and find yourself right at your destination without even realizing that you are traveling. Do not be afraid of the price it is more than worth it, do not bother with the hints packages, you do not need it.
5.0 / 5.0
review by Jasper Nikki | Apr 22nd 2015

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