Title: Monument Valley Develop: ustwo Platforms: IOS Universal Price: $3.99 ---
I shared my thoughts on the Monument Valley beta in January, but even that small taste was enough to make the game one of my most anticipated of 2014. Now that it has finally released and I've experienced the full finished product, I truly believe that Monument Valley is the epitome of what IOS gaming should be.
This is an experience that puts visual artistry and atmosphere first, a complete journey without filler or padding. Each chapter feels distinct, unique, special in its own way. As you guide Ida through this abstract world of long-abandoned structures, you'll encounter impossible mechanisms and structures to push, pull, and rotate, utilizing Escher physics to navigate this mysterious world. Without the touchscreen, Monument Valley just wouldn't be the same; the tactile nature of IOS devices allows for an intimate connection with the world as you manipulate the environment with your fingertips. The whole experience is a masterfully-crafted mix of wonderful artistry, compelling music, immersive tangible mechanics, and subtle narrative.
My trip through Monument Valley lasted two hours, but it was a journey that I didn't want to end in a world I wanted to see more of. It's a game that uses the tactile tangible nature of the touchscreen to its fullest potential, that is simple yet engaging and compelling. At a time when clones and clones of clones flood the charts and tear the spotlight away from the games that deserve it, where IAP and free-to-play practices are rampant and only seem to grow more and more ubiquitous, Monument Valley is not just a great original premium IOS game. It's a great game regardless of system or platform.
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